The 2019 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship featured several heavy hits, including for some of the category’s front-runners.
While drivers walked away unscathed from their various impacts, the same could not be said for their cars, with two Bathurst-winning chassis written off late in the season.
Supercars.com looks back at the five biggest incidents of the year, presented in chronological order.
Macauley Jones, Adelaide
As ever, the street circuits proved punishing in 2019.
Rookie Jones suffered the first big hit of the season on Saturday morning in Adelaide when a brake failure pitched him into a spin at the end of the back straight at 230km/h.
The CoolDrive Commodore made rear-first contact with the tyre wall, which lifted the car off the ground and into another 360-degree spin.
Damage to the car ruled Jones out of the day’s action and, while repaired to complete Sunday duties, a workshop tear-down revealed chassis damage that meant it was parked for the remainder of the year.
“It was obviously a massive accident, probably the biggest one I've ever had," said Jones at the time.
"It's never a good thing when you lose brakes, especially at the end of a straight. You're going at such a high speed there that it's probably lucky the wall was so far away.
“It felt like it was in a bit of slow motion going backwards down the road. It's never a fun thing when you can't see where you're going, and you're going at that speed.”
Tickford teammates, Bathurst
While there were harder hits during the season, the clash between Tickford teammates Chaz Mostert and Cameron Waters in the closing stages of the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 takes the cake for embarrassment.
Mostert clipped Waters as he attempted to take third place around the outside into the Chase on lap 123 of 161, sending both into a spin and out of contention.
It was the third year in a row Mostert had been responsible for ending Waters’ Bathurst hopes and their second clash in as many events, following a tangle at Pukekohe.
Forced to the garage for repairs, Waters was understandably furious, while Mostert returned to the track and set a new lap record, before publicly apologising via a team statement.
Team boss Tim Edwards later surmised that you simply “can’t” stop teammates from racing each other on circuit.
“[Chaz] knows better than that,” he said “He knows he made a mistake. I don’t need to tell him he made a mistake, he knows that and I’m sure he will try to avoid making a mistake in future.”
Anton De Pasquale, Bathurst
De Pasquale’s second Supercars season had started with a crash of his own doing in Adelaide; collecting the Turn 8 wall in qualifying, much to the dismay of team boss Barry Ryan.
But it was Mount Panorama that bit the Penrite Racing youngster hardest, spearing into the Reid Park wall on lap 126, ending the racing life of Erebus’ 2017 Bathurst-winning chassis.
The cause of the crash was a stuck throttle, believed to have been caused by a loose item in the cabin fouling the pedal.
“It was a big hit. I surprisingly feel alright afterwards considering how big a hit it was,” said De Pasquale following the race.
“[The throttle] jammed like 70 percent, which you go through there at close to zero percent, so a fair bit of speed.
“There’s nowhere to go, there’s no room for any of that, so in the end the car’s totalled and we have to build a new one.”
It was a troubled Bathurst for Penrite Racing, with Luke Youlden having suffered a heavy crash in the #9 car on Thursday, requiring an overnight rebuild.
Chaz Mostert, Gold Coast
Two weeks after his Bathurst blunder, Mostert’s year took another spectacular blow at the Vodafone Gold Coast 600.
The last driver to run in Saturday’s Top 10 Shootout after topping qualifying, a clip of the wall at the apex of Turn 9 pitched the Supercheap Mustang hard into the outside fence.
It ended Mostert’s weekend on the spot, with the team declaring the chassis a write-off, subsequently wheeling out its spare car for the driver at Sandown.
“I just made the smallest mistake and it bites you,” lamented Mostert.
“There’s no excuse. We were nowhere in the middle sector, I shouldn’t have really made that mistake, but I just really struggled with the feel of the car under me to start with.
“In saying that it’s our job to drive around those things and try and do a time. I just failed today, it’s pretty simple.”
Scott McLaughlin, Gold Coast
The Surfers Paradise circuit wasn’t content with writing off one Ford Mustang; Sunday qualifying claiming Scott McLaughlin’s Bathurst-winning chassis.
In the dying stages of the session, McLaughlin overcommitted into the first chicane, clipping the exit tyre wall on the left-side, which fired him hard into the right-hand concrete.
That 43G impact tipped the Shell Ford onto its side, sliding down the road on its doors before finally coming to rest at Turn 4, where Shane van Gisbergen stopped to check on his rival.
McLaughlin emerged unscathed and passed a concussion test, but was later admitted to hospital for further checks, which he passed after a scare.
“We tried to do a Shootout lap there and I just clipped the wall,” he said. “It surprised me. When it hit, by the time I was on my side, I was like jeez... it all happened real quick.”
McLaughlin missed the Sunday race, where he was poised to seal the championship, delaying the inevitable until two weeks later at Sandown.