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Klimenko 'numb' over double title success

Supercars
05 Dec
'To be the hunted is actually quite a compliment... it’s a compliment to my team'
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  • Erebus owner Betty Klimenko "numb" after double title triumph

  • Brodie Kostecki won drivers' title, Erebus the teams' title for first time

  • Klimenko likened title victory to 2017 Bathurst breakthrough

Erebus Motorsport owner Betty Klimenko has been left feeling “numb” after her team’s double Supercars championship triumph.

The 2023 season was a breakout campaign for Erebus, with Brodie Kostecki winning the drivers’ title with a race to spare at the VAILO Adelaide 500.

Kostecki won six races and scored 10 pole positions — both season highs — with Erebus winning the teams’ championship in the final race.

Both title fights went to the season finale, with Shane van Gisbergen and Triple Eight 131 and 170 points in arrears in both battles.

The championships ultimately went the way of Erebus after a hard-fought season, with Klimenko “very tired” when asked about the end of the year.

kostecki klimenko adelaide 2023

With van Gisbergen suffering DNFs in both races, Kostecki’s final margin of victory was 323 points, with Erebus winning the teams’ championship by 176 points.

Klimenko likened the title success to the team's Bathurst victory in 2017, and cited how difficult 2023 had been on a personal note following the passing of her brother Mark.

“There’s nothing to express how you feel,” she explained.

“I thought ‘Yeah, I’m gonna feel wonderful, fantastic.’ I actually feel quite numb.

“It’s been a very up-down year for me, as everyone knows.

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“[Winning the championship] was like Bathurst, I wasn’t expecting it. I was outside chatting away to people and someone said, ‘You better go in there; you’re about to win Bathurst.’ It’s the same thing here.

“It feels like everyone around me has put in a lot of effort and Brodie and everyone else, and I’ve kind of just sat back and enjoyed the view, but I know how hard everyone works.

Kostecki celebrates breakthrough title with epic burnout

“The feeling… I think you’ve got to ask me about four days.”

Erebus led the teams’ championship since the season-opening Thrifty Newcastle 500, while the orange numbers remained on Erebus cars from the moment Kostecki grabbed them at Albert Park in April.

Given Erebus led the way all season and were chased by their rivals to no avail, Klimenko was delighted to be the “hunted”.

“I mean, to be the hunted is actually quite a compliment,” Klimenko said.

“It’s a compliment to my team and everything else.

“We’ve done a lot of hunting, and it would be nice to settle down for a while.”

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