Bathurst chaos: You’ve got to laugh

Written By Unknown on Minggu, 12 Oktober 2014 | 20.01

Break-ups in the in the new road surface has forced officials to halt the the Bathurst 1000 for just the third time in the race's history.

Track officials look to repair the track at Turn 2 after the race was stopped, during the Bathurst 1000. Source: Getty Images

THE suspension of Australia's greatest motor race, the Bathurst 1000, had teams and fans alike stunned.

With 100 laps to go, officials parked the cars at the start/finish line while repairs were made on a damages section of the Mount Panorama circuit.

A patch of new tarmac at turn two was breaking up heavily, causing a number of accidents at the high-speed corner.

Nissan co-driver Taz Douglas twice went into the wall at Griffins Bend, with the Fords of Paul Morris and Scott Pye also crashing at the same spot.

Never before had the 1000km classic been red-flagged for track repairs.

Under a new rule introduced this year, all entries were allowed to return to the grid with teams allowed to work on their cars — other than refuel or change tyres.

Douglas said he lost control after missing the corner's apex and sliding onto the loose bits of asphalt.

"As soon as I was on those marbles, I was just a passenger," he said.

"I knew that I was going to be a little bit off line, so I slowed right down, and even on the marbles there's nothing you can do.

"I was actually out there in my stint thinking `Geez, I'm glad I won't be driving the car at the end because it's going to be a handful'."

Volvo's Scott McLaughlin was leading the race before the stoppage after 61 laps.

McLaughlin was third on the grid but got the jump on Holden's pole sitter Shane van Gisbergen and defending champion Mark Winterbottom of Ford.

The multi-million dollar new track surface had already bitten several cars in nearly every practice and qualifying session on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Holden Racing Team's Garth Tander and Warren Luff were the biggest casualties, forced out of the race with irreparable damage to their No.2 Commodore.

A brake failure sent the car into the wall with Luff behind the wheel in Saturday practice, flipping it on its roof after colliding with the rear of Lowndes' car which also crashed.

The race resumed after an hour delay.

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