On this day: Bright and BJR win on Anzac Day

  • Repco Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 25/04/2021
  • By James Pavey

The 2014 visit to New Zealand carried much more weight than usual, with the category staging its first race on Anzac Day.

Prior to the race weekend at Pukekohe, which will host the penultimate round of the 2021 Repco Supercars Championship in November, a championship race had never been contested on Anzac Day in the category’s 55-year history.

A year earlier, Jason Bright scored Brad Jones Racing’s most emotional victory as the 1998 Bathurst winner clinched the maiden Jason Richards Trophy.

WATCH: BRIGHT’S ANZAC DAY WIN

12 months later, Bright and BJR returned to claim another emotional Pukekohe win, this time on one of the most revered days on the Australian and New Zealand calendars.

Jamie Whincup capitalised on a good start to leave pole sitter Bright in his wake as the lights went out.

Whincup loomed to race away to another win, before a power steering issue relegated him to 24th by race’s end, seven laps off the pace.

The race ran time-certain due to a long early Safety Car following a high-speed accident for David Wall.

Side-to-side contact with Chaz Mostert at the back of the circuit saw Wall spin in front of the field, leaving behind a heavily-damaged Dick Johnson Racing Falcon.

So heavy was the accident, that Wall was ruled out for the remainder of the weekend.

Bright took the flag ahead of Shane van Gisbergen and Craig Lowndes, who extended his championship lead following Whincup’s drama.

Whincup wasn’t the only big name to fall by the wayside; Mark Winterbottom, who was second in the standings, spun at the hairpin and finished 13th.

However, the day was about Bright and BJR, which combined to win, to date, the only championship race to be held on Anzac Day.

''It was a special day for two reasons, it was Anzac Day and it's also about remembering JR [Richards],'' Bright said after the race.

''Last year was very special when we knew the trophy was going to be named after him.

''We wanted to come here and win it, everyone in the team wanted to make sure one of our cars brought it home and we were fortunate enough to do it.

''Coming here this year there was a bit of pressure off because the first one was so special, but we still wanted to bring it back to Albury.’'

The championship will return to New Zealand in November for the ITM Auckland SuperSprint.

The 2021 season will continue at The Bend Motorsport Park for the OTR SuperSprint across May 8-9.

The event will be broadcast live on Foxtel and will be streamed on Kayo with highlights on 7 and 7 Plus.

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