Drivers defend Bathurst 500 Safety Car finish

25 Feb
‘At the end of the day, safety's the key. There's a car hanging out of the fence at the Cutting, we have to be going slow'
  • Saturday race ended behind Safety Car after crash

  • Aaron Love crashed at The Cutting with three laps to go

  • Leaders commenced penultimate lap when Safety Car was called

Saturday’s top three finishers have defended the end of Race 1 at the Thrifty Bathurst 500, which ended under yellow conditions after a late-race crash.

The 40-lap encounter finished under the bp pulse Safety Car after a second crash at The Cutting for Blanchard Racing Team rookie Aaron Love.

At the time, Chaz Mostert was coming at Red Bull Ampol Racing teammates Broc Feeney and Will Brown in what loomed to be a grandstand finish.

However, just as the front-runners started lap 39, the Safety Car was deployed again after Love hit the wall at The Cutting for second time. It sealed a win for Feeney, from Brown, and Mostert.

More trouble at the Cutting for rookie Love

Speaking after the race, Feeney suggested there was no alternative, given the proximity of marshals attending to Love’s stranded car.

“Unless you extend the race, I don't really see what we could have probably done there at the end,” Feeney said.

"There were people on the track at the end. Obviously they pulled the Safety Car off, so the Safety Car doesn't lead us over the line. But, I'm not too sure what they could do there.”

Brown, who ended up second after a pit speed limiter error, waved away suggestions of bringing in a NASCAR-style green-white-chequered format, saying it would only encourage more carnage.

"I think, unfortunately, it's just gonna happen every now and then, you know,” Brown said.


"If someone crashes on the last or second-last lap, you're gonna finish under Safety Car. That's sort of how it is, unless you had to do one green lap at the end of the race or something like that.

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"But, you're sort of doing that for TV, which is quite risky for us, a lot of people trying to bomb each other on the last lap. But, yeah, I think it was just unfortunate that it happened when it did.”

Last weekend’s Daytona 500 also ended under caution after a crash at the start of the final lap, something that wasn’t lost on Mostert.

The two-time Bathurst 1000 winner, however, was adamant that safety of the marshals and drivers was paramount.

“You can't be critical of Supercars in this situation,” Mostert said.

"I watched the [Daytona] 500 at the start of the week, and I think they had one car go across the line before they threw the caution because it started the last lap. So even that finish kind of got robbed to a point.

“But, at the end of the day, safety's the key. There's a car hanging out of the fence at the Cutting, we have to be going slow, and we have to be under Safety Car conditions.

"So, no, they didn't get the grandstand finish they wanted, but tomorrow is another opportunity."

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