Bathurst has new king after 'disgraceful' ploy
SCOTT McLaughlin is king of the mountain for the first time in his career in a Bathurst 1000 of extraordinary drama.
The 2019 Bathurst 1000 came down right to the wire when a safety car gave McLaughlin some breathing room with just three laps remaining as rivals Shane van Gisbergen, James Courtney and Jamie Whincup breathed down his neck.
In a fight right to the final corner, McLaughlin held off van Gisbergen by just 0.68 seconds. James Courtney finished third while Jamie Whincup just missed out on a spot on the podium.
"I can't believe I bloody won the Bathurst 1000," McLaughlin said after earlier breaking down in tears immediately after crossing the finish line.
The extraordinary finish was overshadowed by three huge moments of drama that earlier saw the race reach boiling point.
On a day of high drama, McLachlan was able to win his first Bathurst crown as:
- Star ford rival Chaz Mostert wiped his own teammate Cam Waters out of the race when they had both been on track for a podium
- Whincup and Red Bull Racing took the safe approach of refueling with 10 laps remaining, while McLaughlin's team rolled the dice by staying out with a low fuel load; and
- McLaughlin's Shell V Power Racing Team were accused of "disgraceful" sportsmanship when driver Fabian Coulthard held up the grid behind the safety car to allow McLauchlin to pit with some breathing room when half the field went into pit lane during a safety car in the run to the finish. The man who finished second, van Gisbergen, was the man most held up by Coulthard's stacking of the grid. Supercars legend Larry Perkins texted Neil Crompton during the race to say Coulthard's sportsmanship was "disgraceful".
Here's how it finished:
1 - Scott McLaughlin/ Alex Premat
2 - Shane van Gisbergen/ Garth Tander
3 - James Courtney/ Jack Perkins
4 - Jamie Whincup/ Craig Lowndes
5 - David Reynolds/ Luke Youlden
6 - Fabian Coulthard/ Tony D'Alberto
7 - Mark Winterbottom/Steven Richards
8 - Scott Pye/ Warren Luff
9 -Rick Kelly/Dale Wood
10 -Lee Holdsworth/ Thomas Randle