The 2021 Repco Supercars Championship will recommence at Hidden Valley for the Merlin Darwin Triple Crown next month.
The Darwin venue hosted two race events in 2020 as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic shook up the calendar.
The two events last season unearthed a new king of the valley, with Scott McLaughlin drawing level with Mark Skaife on the Darwin wins list.
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McLaughlin, who finished 20th in the Indianapolis 500 overnight, won four of the six races across the two events to move alongside Skaife with eight wins.
Skaife’s eighth and final Darwin win came in the 2007 opener, some five years before McLaughlin made his main game debut.
McLaughlin is also by the far the leading qualifier in Darwin, with his record seven poles three more than Skaife, Winterbottom and David Reynolds.
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In total, in 64 races since 1998, 19 different drivers have won races at Hidden Valley.
Holden is the dominant force in the valley, winning 38 races to Ford’s 25, with Nissan claiming a sole win through Michael Caruso in 2016.
It was in 2009 at Hidden Valley that Caruso claimed his maiden main game win, defying a racy Alex Davison on the Sunday.
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Over a decade later, current Shell V-Power Racing Team ace Anton De Pasquale claimed his first win in the chaotic 2020 opener for Erebus Motorsport.
Commodores won 15 of the first 16 races, the sole Ford win between 1998 and 2002 coming courtesy of Jason Bright for Stone Brothers Racing in the 1998 finale.
Of the 19 winners, 14 have won more than one race; Skaife and McLaughlin lead the way on eight, ahead of Craig Lowndes and Jamie Whincup (seven), Russell Ingall (six) and Mark Winterbottom (four).
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Whincup’s 15 podiums best Lowndes (12), with McLaughlin, Winterbottom and Shane van Gisbergen all claiming 11 podiums.
Van Gisbergen is the driver who looms to bring up a career milestone of sorts in Darwin; he needs two more wins to draw level with the late Peter Brock’s marker of 48 victories.
The Merlin Darwin Triple Crown will feature three sprint races. Can any driver draw themselves closer to Skaife and McLaughlin magical eight?
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The Repco Supercars Championship field will return to the Northern Territory for the Merlin Darwin Triple Crown across June 18-20. Tickets are available here.
The event will be broadcast live on Foxtel and will be streamed on Kayo, and will be broadcast live and free on Seven.
Darwin race winners (drivers)
8: Mark Skaife, Scott McLaughlin 7: Craig Lowndes, Jamie Whincup 6: Russell Ingall 4: Mark Winterbottom 3: Todd Kelly, Jason Bright, Garth Tander 2: Marcos Ambrose, Rick Kelly, Michael Caruso, Shane van Gisbergen, David Reynolds 1: Greg Murphy, Steven Richards, Chaz Mostert, Fabian Coulthard, Anton De Pasquale