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Sunraysia Daily Saturday, October 8, 2016
ALL eyes are on Peter Brock's protege Lowndes
ahead of the 56th Great Race.
An emotional Lowndes won the inaugural
Peter Brock Trophy in 2006 by claiming the Great
Now, as the motor racing community marks
the 10th anniversary of Brock's death, Lowndes
will chase Bathurst title No.7.
That would equal Jim Richards' Mount
Panorama haul - and leaving him trailing only
Peter Perfect's remarkable record nine wins on
Oh, and defending champion Lowndes is
combining again with no slouch - Richards' son
Steven, who has bagged four Bathurst crowns of
JAMIE WHINCUP-PAUL DUMBRELL
HE may have won four Bathurst titles and a
record six Supercars crowns but Whincup has
plenty to prove in this year's Great Race.
He is enduring a rare winning drought on the
mountain, not savouring Bathurst success since
And critics say he may only have himself to
Last year Whincup infamously appeared to
defy team orders to pit and passed a safety car,
relegating him from second to the back of the
field with 20 laps left in the Great Race - he
And in 2014 he again ignored his team's
instructions and ran out of fuel on the 161st and
final lap while leading.
SHANE VAN GISBERGEN-ALEX
FLYING Kiwi van Gisbergen has speed to burn
and now plenty of confidence after snatching the
series lead ahead of the Great Race.
He has never won the legendary Bathurst
enduro but has been buoyed by his
breakthrough triumph on the mountain,
claiming February's Bathurst 12 Hour for
From the same Holden team garage as the
lightning quick Whincup, van Gisbergen is
expected to set the bar for drivers this weekend.
THE man dubbed "Frosty" isn't feeling so hot
after a disastrous 23rd finish in the opening
enduro, the recent Sandown 500.
Winterbottom has dropped to fifth in the
series standings after co-driver Canto hit the
wall at a wet Sandown.
But few would discount the defending series
champion's chances of adding to his 2013
Winterbottom has made it clear he wants
to honour workers from Australia's Ford
manufacturing plants that will permanently
close their doors on Friday.
CHAZ MOSTERT-STEVE OWEN
MOSTERT may only be young but he already
knows the highs and lows of Mount Panorama.
The Ford gun pulled off a shock 2014 Great
Race triumph with veteran Paul Morris.
However, his Bathurst title defence ended in
tears - and a trip to the hospital.
Mostert broke his leg in a horror qualifying
crash that ended his weekend early last year.
Mostert's winning hopes now hinge on how he
faces his Bathurst demons 12 months on.
GARTH TANDER-WARREN LUFF
VETERAN Tander has not won a bunch of races
recently - his recent Sandown 500 triumph with
Luff snapped a 72-race winless streak.
But few would be surprised if he added
Bathurst title No.4 this weekend in response
to the recent extraordinary call by his Holden
The once mighty factory flagship told former
championship winner Tander his contract
would not be renewed next year four days after
standing on the Sandown podium.
It is believed a fuming Tander is ready to make
a point on Australian motorsport's biggest stage
RICK KELLY-RUSSELL INGALL
NISSAN'S Kelly may not have threatened many
podiums of late, winning his last Bathurst crown
way back in 2004.
But few are discounting Kelly after teaming up
with fellow two-time Bathurst champion Ingall,
affectionately dubbed "The Enforcer".
Kelly is a baby faced 33 year old - Ingall is not.
The most experienced driver in the field,
former championship winner Ingall - now a
spritely 52 - will line up for a remarkable 25th
Great Race this weekend.
SIMONA DE SILVESTRO-RENEE
SWISS star de Silvestro returns to the mountain
for a second straight year in an all-female team
ahead of her much anticipated full-time gig in
The former Formula One test driver admits
she has plenty to prove before becoming the
first female full-time touring car driver since
Christine Gibson in 1975 next year.
The pair finished last on their Bathurst debut
last year in a Ford as the first all-female team
on the mountain in almost 20 years, albeit after
another six teams failed to finish.
But the pair are fired up to impress on Sunday
after enduring sexist comments from past and
current male drivers during last year's Great
TOTAL FIELD: 27 cars (Holden 14 entries,
Ford six, Nissan five, Volvo two)
TOTAL LAPS: 161
INTERNATIONAL DRIVERS: Two - de
Silvestro (Switzerland), Premat (France).
BATHURST ROOKIES: Five - Shae Davies,
Chris Van der Drift, Matt Campbell, James
Golding and Richie Stanaway.
Who will emerge as the
2016 King of the Mountain
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Photo: David Hewison/Shutterstock.com
THERE are no hard feelings from Swiss
motorsport driver Simona de Silvestro despite
last year’s “Pussy Wagon” controversy at the
However, the ex-IndyCar driver has vowed
not to show any mercy to her fellow male
competitors at Sunday’s Great Race.
De Silvestro and co-driver Renee Gracie were
last year poised to revel in being the first all
female team to contest the Mount Panorama
race in almost 20 years.
Instead their entry was overshadowed by
Ford driver David Reynolds’ now infamous -
and dismissive — description of their team.
Reynolds was fined $25,000 for his jibe.
And although Reynolds’s wallet took a
beating so did the aforementioned all-female
entry, the women finishing last of the cars who
didn’t fall victim to the concrete pitfalls of
De Silvestro admitted she still had to prove
herself against the guys ahead of her full-time
Supercars debut next season, on a three-year
She will be the first female to become a full-
time touring car driver since Christine Gibson
But the former Formula One test driver
claimed she would not be motivated by
Reynolds’ controversial call.
“It doesn’t matter, it is just a comment,” de
Silvestro told AAP.
“As a woman you have to prove yourself.
“However, in every series I have been in I
have proven I am fast and that is the way I will
be accepted again in Supercars - and I know I
can do that.”
De Silvestro was adamant her combination
with Gracie would come good at Mount
Panorama. “We know we have to improve on
our result last year,” she said.
Women ready to fight back
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