The Bathurst 1000 is one of Australia’s most celebrated sporting events. Since the early 1960s when it debuted as the ‘Armstrong 500’, the event has worked its way into the very fabric of our sporting nation. The race has certainly changed, moving from 500 miles to 1000 kilometres in the 1970s and with different classes competing across the decades, but the essence of the event has stayed very much in place. It’s a race that showcases the legends of our sport and another epic sporting chapter will be added this weekend.
CIRCUIT LENGTH - 6.231 KILOMETRES
CIRCUIT DIRECTION - ANTI-CLOCKWISE
AVERAGE SPEED - 178 KM/PH
MAXIMUM SPEED - 300 KM/PH
FASTEST POINT - CONROD STRAIGHT
The Mount Panorama track is one of the world’s best. It’s a wild mix of two long straights, extraordinary elevation changes and a daunting sequence of corners. The track brings out the best of the nation’s top drivers, ultimate commitment is absolutely essential. At the start of the year, the track was resurfaced, resulting in a grippier track and it is expected that lap times will be faster than ever this season. Could the V8 Supercar track record be lowered once again? Don’t bet against it.
11:05-11:55: Practice One – All drivers
13:15-14:00: Practice Two – Co-drivers
15:10-16:00: Practice Three – All drivers
09:30-10:15: Practice Four – Co-drivers
13:10-14:00: Practice Five – All drivers
10:05-10:45: Practice Six – All drivers
17:10-17:55: Top Ten Shootout
07:50-08:10: Warm up
10:30-1715: Bathurst 1000
Here are the times you can meet the drivers:
13:30-14:30: Autograph session – Kings Pde
09:00-09:20: Team BOC Merchandise Marquee
09:30-09:50: Team BOC Merchandise Marquee
Here's your chance to win $100 to spend at our online store. Just spend $80 or more on Team BOC gear and you go into the draw for a $100 voucher to spend at the Team BOC online store - click here
Round 10: Sandown 500, September 12-14
Andrew Jones started the race from 15th position on the grid. It was a rough and tumble opening lap with Jones and HHA Racing co-driver Oliver Gavin rubbing panels before a more aggressive lunge from the Englishman led to the Team BOC VF Commodore losing its driver’s side door skin. Much worse was to come for the car though when a safety car was called on lap 45 for debris on the track. Just before the safety car was released Jones’ car hit the back of Greg Ritter’s Volvo causing damage to the radiator and sending the car into the pits for lengthy repair work. The car rejoined but on lap 132 with Jason Bright now at the wheel, it fell victim to an errant wheel ripped off Lee Holdsworth’s Erebus in a frightening high speed shunt. The loose wheel caused extensive damage to the front of the Team BOC Commodore and Bright was forced to retire from the race
Team BOC is renowned for its consistent speed at Bathurst and this year, Jason Bright and Andrew Jones are clearly focused on continuing this tradition.
“We always try and concentrate on the areas that really matter at Bathurst,” Bright said.
“You need good high speed balance across the top and you have to get the braking right.”
“I think we’ll have top 5 pace, even at Sandown we had top 5 pace but we had a couple of bad qualifying races and a very difficult main race.”
“I think we’ll be pretty strong, last year I was very happy with the car there, we’ve just got to concentrate on all the same areas and if we get the balance right at the top of the mountain I think we’ll be right.”
Bright has been a regular at Bathurst since 1997 but his enthusiasm for the event is as strong as ever.
“It’s a pretty special, it’s changed a lot for sure but driving on the track you definitely get the same buzz you always had,” he said.
“It’s a long four days up there, there’s plenty of time to think about it and work up to it all.”
Plenty has been said about the track conditions this year on the newly resurfaced Mt Panorama.
Bright drove on the track at the Bathurst 12 hour event in February and is adamant that times should tumble.
“I’d be amazed if the lap records don’t go,” he said.
“We don’t know how hot or wet it’s going to be but if it’s a moderate, dry day, there’s no doubt that the records should be broken.”
Co-driver Andrew Jones made his main series debut at the Mountain in 2002 and is confident that this year will provide another opportunity for success.
“To be able to go up there and really compete is a nice feeling,” he said.
“We had a really good run last year. It was unfortunate that we didn’t end up on the podium but a top 5 at Bathurst against such a quality field is still a good result. We’ll see what this year brings. I still think we’re going to go up there and be competitive but we just need to keep our heads down and work away at it, they’re all long days, we’ll just go through our program and not get too far ahead of ourselves and hopefully end up in a strong position.”
Jones is also competing in the Dunlop series race on Saturday.
“Doing double duty is very, very cool,” he said.
“If there was a third category I could be driving in I’d stick my hand up and have a crack that’s for sure. There’s never a dull moment driving around on a track like that. To be able to have the opportunity to do the double duty and compete in my Team Freightliner DVS rig and then share the car with Brighty is great.”
Team owner Brad Jones sees a distinct advantage in team continuity.
“We’ve got strong driver combinations that are returning together and all know each other really well,” he said.
“Last year we came fifth with car 8 and it was a little disappointing because it looked like we were on for a podium so hopefully we can go a little bit better this year. I think the circuit will be a lot faster since the resurfacing. I see no reason why we can’t be fighting for a podium this year.”
1. Jamie Whincup: 2325
2. Craig Lowndes: 2052
3. Mark Winterbottom: 2046
4. Shane Van Gisbergen: 1982
5. James Courtney: 1964
11. Jason Bright: 1329
1. Red Bull Racing Australia: 4427
2. Ford Performance Racing: 3765
3. Holden Racing Team: 3676
4. Brad Jones Racing: 3185
5. Norton Hornets: 2575
Find us at www.teamboc.com.au and on facebook and twitter @teamboc and Instagram @teambocv8sc.
Published: 07 October 2014.