Drama at the front: Eight times the leaders collided

29 Mar
Twice in two races, the leaders collided in Melbourne. Here are more recent instances of drama at the front of the pack

In two of four races at the recent round in Melbourne, drama struck at the front of the pack as the leaders collided.

In Race 5, Matt Payne and Cam Waters crashed out in dramatic fashion disputing the lead, handing victory to Broc Feeney on a platter.

A day later, Payne was hit by Chaz Mostert, with the latter penalised. The clash opened the door to Nick Percat, who sailed through to claim his first win since 2020.

Following two dramatic clashes at the Grand Prix, Supercars.com highlights some other recent instances of drama at the front of the pack.

Darwin 2011

Four into Turn 1 ends in chaos

A late Safety Car restart led to a dramatic Turn 1 squabble involving major names, with long-time race leader Mark Winterbottom sent into a spin after a four-wide collision. The clash opened the door to Rick Kelly, who won the race after starting 11th.

Ipswich 2014

Caruso and McLaughlin collide

With 11 laps to go, Michael Caruso made his move, resulting in contact with the right-rear of the Scott McLaughlin's Volvo. Where a Nissan or Volvo win seemed a certainty, both drivers were dumped out of contention, resulting in a Triple Eight one-two.

Tasmania 2015

Reynolds' race ruined at Turn 1

Craig Lowndes and David Reynolds launched off the front row, but at Turn 2, the two drivers’ hopes were ruined almost before it began. Lowndes tipped Reynolds into a spin in front of the field, just seconds after the lights went out. Lowndes, who copped a penalty, fought through to finish sixth, with Reynolds recovering to 11th.

Bathurst 2016

The dramatic 2016 redress

The 2016 Bathurst 1000 had one of the most controversial endings in Great Race history, following a collision between effective leaders Jamie Whincup, Scott McLaughlin and Garth Tander. An overtake attempt by Whincup sent McLaughlin off at The Chase, and in a rejoin, a Whincup redress led to contact that saw McLaughlin and Tander crash out, and the Triple Eight star penalised. The penalty saw Will Davison/Jonathan Webb win the race.

Sydney 2017

McLaughlin and van Gisbergen collide in Sydney

One of the most dramatic run-ins between Scott McLaughlin and Shane van Gisbergen came while they were disputing the lead in Sydney. On a late restart, van Gisbergen out-foxed McLaughlin, who tipped the #97 into a spin at Turn 2. Both drivers, who were fighting for the title, were later embroiled in a war of words. Van Gisbergen was found to have breached the restart procedure, while McLaughlin was penalised over the clash.

Gold Coast 2017

Frontrunners collide on the Gold Coast

Fighting for the effective lead, Jamie Whincup's co-driver Paul Dumbrell locked a left-front into Turn 1 and drove into Chaz Mostert's co-driver Steve Owen, sending the Falcon spinning. Dumbrell was handed a 15-second penalty, with Mostert/Owen recovering to win the race.

The Bend 2020

Whincup takes out McLaughlin

Scott McLaughlin and Jamie Whincup were fighting for the 2020 title, and while it seemed destined to end up in McLaughlin's hands, the two collided in dramatic fashion disputing the lead at The Bend in 2020. Whincup was penalised, before McLaughlin was later penalised over a separate incident.

Townsville 2022

De Pasquale turns SVG at the final corner

The 2022 Townsville finale victory appeared headed the way of Shane van Gisbergen, but Anton De Pasquale was catching the Kiwi. At the final corner on the final lap, a desperate De Pasquale lunge led to van Gisbergen being tipped into a spin, before van Gisbergen games ensure De Pasquale, who crossed the line first, was penalised.

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