Still a chance: Greatest title-winning comebacks

11 Oct 2021
When the season resumes, Jamie Whincup will be 276 points behind

When the 2021 Repco Supercars Championship resumes in Sydney, Jamie Whincup will be 276 points from the championship lead.

Shane van Gisbergen scored 11 wins from 19 starts across the opening seven rounds of the season to create the hefty margin.

Whincup, conversely, won just once - in Tasmania - and is the only driver within a full round of points of van Gisbergen.

  • 10 biggest title-winning points margins

  • The greatest comebacks: Lowest grid spots for race winners

If Whincup wins an eighth drivers’ title from here, it would be the greatest comeback in history with regards to points deficits.

The chances are slimmer beyond Whincup; Cameron Waters, Chaz Mostert and Will Davison are 412, 420 and 421 points behind van Gisbergen respectively.

The 2021 season will resume at the Bunnings Trade Sydney SuperNight on October 29. There are a maximum of 1545 points left to win across the final five rounds.

Supercars are back in Sydney

The first three Sydney events will feature a trio of sprint races worth 100 points for victory, with five additional points to go the driver who sets the fastest lap.

The Beaurepaires Sydney SuperNight will feature two 250km-long, 150-point paying races.

The season will end with the Repco Bathurst 1000, which will be worth 300 points for the winner.

Just three times has a driver come from 200 or mores points down to win the championship.

Ambrose had a poor start to his 2003 campaign Pic: AN1 Images


Whincup has done it twice - en route to his first title in 2008 after an early-season Hamilton disaster, and to his sixth championship in 2014.

In 2010, Whincup also ceded a 204-point lead to James Courtney, who worked his way into a points lead he wouldn’t surrender after Whincup hit trouble.

Whincup led after every round in 2011, bar after the 10th round in Bathurst, where a mechanical drama - coupled with second for Craig Lowndes - saw the series lead swap hands.

Van Gisbergen has led the standings ever since he crossed the line to win Race 1 at the season-opening Repco Mt Panorama 500.

Whincup was 213 points down in 2014, and won by 583 points

Scott McLaughlin led his entire title-winning campaigns in 2019 and 2020 - but even he knows how to lose a title.

McLaughlin famously lost the 2017 title in Newcastle to Whincup, who was 129 points behind the Kiwi after the eighth round in Ipswich.

Van Gisbergen himself knows how to mount a comeback. In 2016, he was 137 points behind Whincup after the ninth round at Sydney Motorsport Park.

Van Gisbergen’s 2016 comeback is one of nine times an eventual series champion has overhauled a deficit of more than 100 points.

Van Gisbergen was, at one stage, 137 points behind in 2016

10 biggest post-event points deficits overhauled to become champion (since 2000)

Jamie Whincup, 2014: 213 points behind Mark Winterbottom, Perth (Rnd 5 of 14)Jamie Whincup, 2008: 208 points behind Mark Winterbottom, Ipswich (Rnd 7 of 14)James Courtney, 2010: 204 points behind Jamie Whincup, Hamilton (Rnd 4 of 14)Marcos Ambrose, 2003: 144 points behind Jason Bright, Phillip Island (Rnd 2 of 13)Shane van Gisbergen, 2016: 137 points behind Jamie Whincup, Sydney (Rnd 9 of 14)Jamie Whincup, 2017: 129 points behind Scott McLaughlin, Ipswich (Rnd 8 of 14)Russell Ingall, 2005: 115 points behind Marcos Ambrose, Ipswich (Rnd 7 of 13)Rick Kelly, 2006: 101 points behind Craig Lowndes, Bathurst (Rnd 9 of 13)Jamie Whincup, 2011: 100 points behind Craig Lowndes, Bathurst (Rnd 10 of 14)Scott McLaughlin, 2018: 93 points behind Shane van Gisbergen, Adelaide (Rnd 1 of 16)

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