NED's Iconic Bathurst Moments

NED's Iconic Bathurst Moments

It’s enduro season in Supercars again and following the Sandown 500 all roads lead to Bathurst. It also means that we’ve launched the 2023 edition of our Sounds of Bathurst Limited Edition Australian Whisky, a whisky sound aged to the roar on V8 Supercars around Bathurst.

Taking inspiration from Bathurst’s history and relentless quest of innovation, this year we used audio from the 2022 Grove Penrite Racing team, as well as audio from Greg Murphy’s iconic Lap Of The Gods in the Commodore and the 2013 Richards/Winterbottom race-winning Falcon. We think it’s resulted in our best Sounds of Bathurst to date. Whether you’ve just ordered your bottle and are waiting for the courier or have it on hand and are looking for some inspiration to open it, here’s a collection of the NED team’s favourite Bathurst memories.

Moments in Bathurst history that stick in the mind, an emotional and invigorating YouTube rabbit hole to go down while sipping on a whisky. Whatever happens in 2023 for the 60th anniversary of Bathurst, we’ll be making more great Australian sporting memories with a NED Australian Whisky in hand.

Team Orders And An Iconic Image

A “crushing” Ford victory by the Moffat Ford Dealers Team in 1977 will always be remembered for the site of two XC Falcons flying down Conrod in tandem, Moffat and Jacky Ickx (the latter a Le Mans 24 Hour and F1 Grand Prix winner also) in the #1 taking the win from the #2 of Colin Bond and Alan Hamilton.

It would emerge after the race that team owner Moffat had invoked team orders to ensure that the #2 stayed behind the ailing #1, ensuring victory for the team boss and one hell of a finish line photo. It might have been different if they both didn’t have over a lap to the chasing LX Toranas of Larry Perkins and Peter Janon, and Peter Brock and Phil Brock, but either way those who think team orders are a modern conundrum may well be pointed to the famous 1977 finish.

Dick Johnson Hits The Rock

While leading the 1980 much has been written about Dick and The Rock. How’d it get there? Did someone put it there? (Note: 43 years on it was most likely an accident, a rock rolling down the hill onto the track after a punter tried to make a makeshift bed.) What we know is that it took Dick out of the race, having juts put a lap on Peter Brock, and it resulted in one of the most emotionally-charged interviews we’ve ever seen at the mountain.

“Dick, the switchboards at all the Seven stations across Australia are jammed of people who are so upset at what has happened. Believe it or not, they are ringing and pledging money to help you.”

In The Wet In 1992

The 1992 race will always be best remembered for Jim Richard’s iconic “you’re a pack of arseholes” line on the podium, but the drenched finale of the race is just as memorable.

Rain caused absolute havoc as the Nissan-dominated epic drew to a conclusion and anyone stuck on slicks when the heavens opened an absolute passenger. With cars strewn across the mountain, one of the most enduring images of the race is the pile-up on conrod at the exit of Forrest’s Elbow.

Even crawling down the hill became impossible as the mountain took victim, after victim, after victim, after victim… Skip to about 12 minutes into the above video for the iconic podium presentation of “Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit” from the crowd and a stern response from Richo.

1997’s Hero Of Bathurst

1997 was a controversial year for the 1000, a TV rights turf war resulting in two runnings of The Great Race. Whichever side of the fence you were on the spirit of Bathurst was evident and the Super Tourer edition provided one of the endearing memories courtesy of Tony Newman and Dwayne Bewley and their Fastway-sponsored Peugeot 405. With engine cutting out at the Chase on the last lap, Kiwi Bewley – physically and emotionally spent – would go on to literally push his car over the finish line cheered on by thousands of fans.

Iconic commentator, the late Murray Walker, was as his best, echoing the crowd with “Keep it going mate, keeping it going mate – go, go go!” and then summing up the national sentiment when officials tried to intervene with, “They’ll be taken apart by Australia if they don’t let him finish!” The epitome of what Bathurst is and what it means to us all.

The Lap of The Gods

Poor John Bowe. His 2.07.956 in the 2003 Top 10 Shootout should have been good enough for pole according to all common sense, but no one was ready for what Greg Murphy was about to produce. Motorsport is technical, it’s engineering, it’s data, but Murphy turned it into ballet.

He danced his VY Commodore across the top of the mountain to obliterate the track record and set a 2:06.859 – over a second quicker than Bowe. All JB could do was laugh and shake his head along with the rest of the country.

Murphy vs Ambrose

“These two do not like each other and they are going to have some serious words!” Icons in the eyes of their fans and begrudgingly acknowledged as geniuses by the opposing camp, not many people have bad words to say about Greg Murphy and Marcos Ambrose. Their fierce rivalry is best remembered for that incident in the cutting in 2005.

On lap 145 with the end in site, the two tangled causing an incident that blocked the track and will go down in Bathurst folklore forever.

Chance Of Bathurst Glory Overrides Common Sense

When The Bathurst 1000 became a round of the Championship rather than a stand-alone event from 1999 onwards, there was trepidation from some sections of the fanbase. ‘Bathurst is Bathurst,’ they would say, ‘no one wants to see a drive consolidate a top five finish to bank championship points when they have a chance to win it! Let it be its own classic, a race of itself above all others’.

Well, if anyone was ever thinking that teams should play it safe and bank championship points in the face of glory, they’ve repeatedly forgotten to tell the teams. In 2005 the allure of another Bathurst win proved too strong for Jamie Whincup who, despite having a garage screaming at him to save fuel, put it all on the line to arrive agonisingly short and run out of fuel on the final lap.

He would fall into the clutches of the hard charging Chaz Mostert who would claim his first Bathurst 1000 victory in one of the most iconic Bathurst finishes ever, remembered best by Holden and Ford fans screaming on the hill and screaming at their TVs around the country. They knew they didn’t have the fuel, there was probably a safe second place on offer by coasting, but they went searching for a Bathurst miracle that never materialised. “Save more fuel. At this stage we’re not gonna make it. I need maximum save, you’ve got two seconds to the car behind, maximum save mate, we are not gonna make it. We’re just gonna have to chance it.”