Bathurst can usually be relied upon for many things: Great weather, great racing, great scenery and a great big punch-up between the warring Ford and Holden fans. The 2011 Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 race for V8 Supercars was no exception, although by the time the final laps were being played out it was clear that on this day the spoils were going to be won by a Holden team, but which one?
As this clip begins the Holden Commodores of Garth Tander/Nick Percat and Craig Lowndes/Mark Skaife are locked in a fearsome scrap for the lead, with Lowndes chasing Tander. There are three laps to go and the gap is at around one second. But such is the nature of arguably Australia’s finest circuit that there’s nowhere to hide; driving defensively for three laps is unlikely to end well.
Mr Tander looks like he was aware of this and so abandons any notion of closing the door and instead just goes for it. So what we end up with here are two cars going hell-for-leather for three laps driven in the manner one might attack a qualifying lap on fresh tyres. The crowd may have been denied the close Ford-Holden battle at the end that it craved, but what they did get was two top V8 Supercar pilots doing as fine a job of celebrating this year’s FoS theme as anyone.
As ever with V8 Supercars the television coverage is first class. Add to the mix a pair of howling and very powerful V8s running through ‘spool’ differentials (meaning that both rear wheels turn at the same rate at all times), hopping, diving and squatting around Bathurst and entertainment is guaranteed. The punchline is that as this clip starts with both cars almost bumper-to-bumper, they have already been racing for a cool 158 laps …