The Motor Race that Stops the Nation

One event on the Australian motorsport calendar stands out above all others. The Bathurst 1000 is one thousand gruelling kilometres, 161 flying laps and 7 high pressure pitstops of non-stop, V-8 powered adrenalin.

For the 3rd year in a row, Trusted Travel were lucky enough to attend the Mt. Panorama race track for the biggest race of the V-8 Supercar season. This year’s race would be particularly special as the last time the iconic Holden brand would race in the top tier of Australian motorsport.

We started our epic trip with a mixed bag of country tourism and popping into the track to watch the old classics race as well as the all-important top 10 qualifying shootout. In the days leading up to the race we had hearty pub lunches in the beautiful historic townships of Milthorpe and Carcoar while gallivanting around the countryside to take in the natural beauty on the NSW Central Tablelands.

But it was the main race on Sunday that we were really there for. Our group sported a mixed bag of Ford and Holden fans as well as one particularly confused staff member who didn’t know where his loyalties should lie. Who would come up trumps? Could the mighty Red Lion of Holden take the crown with the superstar tandem of the Triple 8 Racing Team’s Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes, or would reigning supercars champion Scott Mclaughlin spoil the party and deliver for Ford? The 2020 crown of “King of the Mountain” was up for grabs.

From our ideal viewpoint in the accessible marquee, perched right on the corner of Conrod and Pit straights, Trusted Travel cheered as Australia’s best drivers jockeyed for position. Tragedy struck for Holden when their favourite son, Jamie Whincup collided with a wall and was out of the race. Trusted Travel’s Ford supporters may have been counting their chickens but as is often the case during the great race, fate still had a spanner to throw in the works. For five crazy minutes, the skies opened and on a wet track, 888’s Shane van Gisburgen ducked and weaved his way to the front to give Holden the lead. Van Gisburgen would hold that lead after being stalked on the track by young superstar Cam Waters in his Tickford Racing Ford Mustang.

There were tears of joy and screams of frustration as Holden held on for a memorable victory. Even the most staunch Ford supporters in our group had to admit that it was a fitting send off for Holden but “we (Ford) will be back next year and we’ll be faster next time” said one Trusted Travel participant.

Cameron Moody, a Trusted Travel regular who loves his trips to major sporting events, said “Wow. What a special thing to be a part of. Thanks for an awesome weekend!”

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