SupercarXtra Magazine issue #118 celebrates the drivers and combinations that went on a winning run in the Bathurst 500/1000.
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Bob Jane and Harry Firth were the original endurance dream team, combining for two wins in the Armstrong 500 at Phillip Island in 1961 and 1962. Their winning form continued when the race moved to the Mount Panorama Circuit at Bathurst in 1963, claiming victory in a Ford Cortina Mk.I GT. The combination split in 1964, though both drivers added to their tallies with Jane winning in 1964 and Firth in 1967.
Peter Brock and Jim Richards was the most dominant partnership in the history of the Bathurst 500/1000; first combination to claim three consecutive wins at the Mount Panorama Circuit between 1978 and 1980. Following Ford’s crushing one-two formation finish in 1977 and after Brock’s return to the Holden Dealer Team in 1978, the Brock-Richards combination won in their first Bathurst outing together. The 1979 victory remains the biggest winning margin with a six-lap advantage cemented by Brock recording the fastest lap on the final lap of the race.
Craig Lowndes followed in the footsteps of mentor Brock with his own hat-trick of consecutive wins between 2006 and 2008. And, fittingly, it started in 2006 in honour of the then recently-departed Brock. Lowndes and Whincup were unstoppable in those years, overcoming the challenge of competitive fields and a late rain shower in 2007. After their bid for a fourth win in a row failed in 2009, the rules that split lead drivers resulted in a Lowndes-Whincup one-two formation finish in 2010.
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