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Top five touring car moments in Perth

Ahead of the Repco Supercars Championship’s annual trip out West, the Repco Garage has highlighted the top moments since Wanneroo/Barbagallo/ Raceway (depending on what era you grew up in) first hosted its inaugural round during the 1973 season.

BONUS: 1978 – MHDT domination

Peter Brock’s return coinciding with John Sheppard assuming control of the Marlboro Holden Dealer Team proved a dynamic operation. This was no more highlighted as Brock, teammate John Harvey and West Australian Wayne Negus gave the mighty squad a to then unprecedented podium lockout at Wanneroo. To achieve this, Brock charged from 12th on the grid to take the win as the three factory Holden Torana A9Xs completed a victory lap line astern.

1983 – Allan Moffat’s pit stop

Realising his underpowered Mazda RX-7 was going to struggle on the climbs and straights of Wanneroo Raceway as it was known back then, Allan Moffat put together a crafty plan to half fill the Japanese pocket rocket at the start to ensure he not only kept pace, but built a margin to his V8 rivals. The plan was successful as Moffat avoided a spinning Peter Brock late in the race to seal an unlikely, though strategic victory.

1988 – Wild weather causes chaos

Starting in wet conditions although a question mark remained about weather, a sudden rain storm arrived to cause chaos on lap 14. Trouble was found particularly at the final corner where Jim Richards half spun his BMW M3 following Larry Perkins in the factory Holden Commodore. Allan Moffat was next to go off at Turn 1 precariously close to a photography, while Richards finally beached it. Next, the two leading Shell Ultra Hi Sierras went off at the final corner in what were now torrential conditions. Others such as Colin Bond and Tony Longhurst also speared off. The red flag was required as conjecture surrounded when it was displayed and how the race was to be restarted. In the end it was deemed drivers to line up as the start grid, with the Shell Ultra Hi Sierras finished first and third, with Bond second.

2005 – Fuel added to Mark Skaife and Marcos Ambrose rivalry

It was all out war between Mark Skaife and Marcos Ambrose after the latter secured two Supercars titles before announcing at the start of the 2005 season he was moving to NASCAR. Skaife had dominated prior and wanted the mantle back, however it all came to a dramatic end at Barbagallo Raceway. Both shared the front row and proceeded to collide heading into the opening corner, with Skaife heading into retirement and Ambrose skating through the sand trap, serving a penalty before finishing inside the top five. Check out the strong words said during the post-incident interviews.

2011 – Karl Reindler and Steve Owen in start line fireball

A stall by Karl Reindler led to a spectacular fireball on the main straight after an unsighted Steve Owen ploughed into the rear of the Brad Jones Racing Commodore. A driver’s worst nightmare, Reindler stalled at the start of the race and Owen following David Reynolds closely, speared into the rear of the stricken Commodore when the future Bathurst winner took avoiding action. Fire engulfed both cars as officials and crew members from other teams worked to put out the flames. Both drivers have emerged and continued to drive at future rounds.

2013 – Lowndes breaks the record

Craig Lowndes has an enviable record in Perth, so it was fitting the three-time title winner achieved a record breaking 91st Australian Touring Car Championship/Supercars win. Mark Skaife previously held the record at 90 wins, but it was Lowndes eclipsing this in what was a Triple Eight Race Engineering 1-2 in the opening race of the weekend. He added a further 19 wins before retiring from full-time racing at the end of 2018, but continues as an endurance driver to this day.

2023 – SVG and Brodie Kostecki do battle

It was a battle for the ages as the two title contenders and tough racers went at it in an eagerly expected match up. Brodie Kostecki was playing defence late in the opening race against a rampant Shane van Gisbergen last year, withstanding the Kiwi’s taps until the closing stages. Eventually van Gisbergen moved his way through, but arguments in pit lane started about the manoeuvring and contact made on Kostecki, but nothing came off it. Kostecki ended up with the last laugh in Adelaide anyway.