Fast Facts: Penrite Oil Sandown SuperSprint

  • Repco Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 15/03/2021
  • By Will Dale, V8 Sleuth

1) This year's event marks the 51st held at Sandown in ATCC/Repco Supercars Championship history. No other venue has hosted more rounds than the Melbourne circuit with its championship race history including both endurance races and sprint events. This weekend marks the championship's return to the storied venue for the first time since the penultimate round of 2019.

2) It has been 10 years since Sandown last hosted a single-driver championship round, which was the penultimate round of the 2011 season. Only eight of the 24 drivers on the 2021 grid have previously competed in a single-driver event at the circuit: Jamie Whincup, Shane van Gisbergen, Will Davison, Mark Winterbottom, Fabian Coulthard, David Reynolds, James Courtney and Tim Slade.

3) David Reynolds will reach a career milestone in starting his 350th Repco Supercars Championship race in the final race of the Penrite Oil Sandown SuperSprint weekend. The Kelly Grove Racing driver made his championship debut at the venue in 2007. While he won a non-championship qualifying sprint to secure the ARMOR ALL Pole Position for the 2018 Sandown 500, Reynolds' best championship race finish at the venue is a third place in the main driver qualifying race at the 2019 Sandown 500 – which was a championship race on that occasion.

Whincup and Lowndes won the 2019 Sandown 500

4) Fabian Coulthard will move to 15th on the all-time championship race starts list at Sandown, surpassing his countryman Greg Murphy. Sandown also marks the Team Sydney driver's 204th championship round start, which moves him level with former team boss Dick Johnson for equal 17th on the all-time list.

5) The list of active drivers to have won Repco Supercars Championship races at Sandown has a curious omission: current points leader Shane van Gisbergen. The Red Bull Ampol Racing driver's best results are a trio of second placings, the most recent of which came in the 2018 Sandown 500. All up, five drivers on the 2021 grid have won championship races at Sandown: Whincup (9), Winterbottom (2), Davison (1), Courtney (1) and Cam Waters (1).

6) The record for the lowest grid position for the winner of a single driver race at Sandown in ATCC/Repco Supercars Championship history has stood for a long time – 56 years in fact! Norm Beechey won the 1965 ATCC at Sandown from 14th on the grid. It was the first time the track hosted the ATCC.

7) The last nine Repco Supercars Championship races held at Sandown have all been won by cars starting on the front row of the grid. That means the Sandown 500 from 2013 to 2019 plus the Saturday afternoon grid-setting sprint races in 2019 which counted for championship points.

Winterbottom and Mostert led a Prodrive one-two in 2015

8) IRWIN Racing's Mark Winterbottom has finished all 23 Repco Supercars Championship races he's started at Sandown. Unsurprisingly, his finishing record is the best at the circuit of anyone in the 2021 field!

9) The most Safety Car periods in a single driver Sandown championship race is five, which occurred in Race 2 in 2002. Won by Marcos Ambrose, the race was a 96-lap single driver race which doubled as the final race of the season.

10) Jamie Whincup will hit an unusual milestone at Sandown: cars driven by him (including cars he's co-driven in endurance races) will have travelled 100,000km in Supercars Championship races when he completes his 54th lap of racing across the weekend.

The Repco Supercars Championship field will return to Victoria for the Penrite Oil Sandown SuperSprint across March 20-21. Tickets are on sale now.

The event will be broadcast live on Foxtel and will be streamed on Kayo. Check out the full weekend schedule here.

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