Bathurst 1000: Saturday Notebook
As we’re getting down to business time on track, it’s time to wind up the off-track antics, with our final serving of the Bathurst Notebook series for 2023.
Don’t forget to keep firing through your Hots/Nots/Whats on the socials to @theracetorque, with our patented Power Rankings to follow early next week.
And on that note, we wish you a very happy Bogan Christmas Eve.
Additional Content: Bathurst Notebook Series
60th Celebrations in Full Swing
This tasty collection can be found this week just inside the gated Supercars paddock area.
Wait, that’s not right…
Also included on display is the Jamie Whincup ‘Kate’ VE, wearing its 2012 winning colours.
Except for one minor detail – the Caltex on the mirrors has been subbed out for Ampol.
Fuel wars are real, and they are changing history…
Porsche lounge in the air
PORSCHE’s stunning new teams lounge is on full show at Mount Panorama this weekend, literally hanging on the edge of Conrod straight just past the bridge after the Chase.
Porsche’s new lounge this year is much larger than the previous model, which means a significant amount of scaffolding has been used to build a platform to support it.
The building projects out over the large – and somewhat deep – drainage culvert that runs between the circuit and the support paddock, fuel compound and sheds that run along the inside fence on driver’s left.
The result is a significant feat of engineering that began construction Monday last week, with the balance of the structure itself commencing its build on Wednesday last week, to be finished in time for teams to use on set-up day.
The lounge travels to each round with several semi-trailers carrying it and the Porsche garage marquees to every event so teams have consistency wherever they are racing.
Deconstruction commences on Monday morning with the entire structure to be moved to the Gold Coast in time for the next round in two weeks time.
The Porsche lounge is expected to serve more than 1,600 cups of Coffee this weekend as it caters for the 30-strong Carrera Cup field, friends and family and associated hangers-on like TRT who are angling for a Flat White or two…
By Richard Craill
Notable in their absence from the passenger ride hot lap session is the regular fleet of Mustangs and other new Fords, with a mixed bag of cars taking to the track instead, including local dealership service loan cars.
Is Ford possibly upset with Supercars?
More Museum Goodness
Seriously, we cannot get enough of the National Motor Racing Museum – here are some more goodies for you to froth over.
What a place.
Meanwhile: Just outside the Museum…
…is the collection of historic police vehicles, which debuted at the festivities downtown on Wednesday.
There are some absolute crackers in this lot.
How ‘The Cutting’ got its name
We’re going to take a stab in the dark here, but it’s because the road is deeply etched into the side of the Mountain.
It’s actually quite impressive how steep the wall rises to driver’s left, conversely…
…the drop on the other side is genuinely terrifying.
Also note, the old TV camera position, and the new temporary structure adjacent to each other.
Camping Scene: Saturday
The famed Bathurst Hilton is having its last hurrah in 2023 in its current form after decades of attendance in the paddock camp area.
It will be strange not seeing the landmark come to life once more.
While the 7,500 public campsites around the venue booked out in record time, there is still lots of camping being hosted on private properties around the precinct.
The ovens used to pre-heat the brake components are nothing special – most teams run absolutely stock standard kitchen variety examples.
Photo: Ruined in the name of Safety
This is forever one of our favourite track walk photos, but this year, it was somewhat ruined by this reflector, which has remained in place dating back to the Bathurst 12 Hour at the start of the year.
Big race fans
A block away from the track in a quiet cul-de-sac opposite the TRT residence for the week, this is the scene.
Clearly, some families who move to the base of Mount Panorama are not race fans, and nick off for race week, while others are absolutely all-in on motorsport.
Arise Sir Wilko
It was fantastic to see a true legend of the Channel 7 broadcast of Bathurst from the 1980s and ’90s, Garry Wilkinson, trackside to receive his V8 Media Association Hall of Fame induction.
Stay tuned to the On the Grid Podcast this week for an in-depth chat.
At his induction ceremony hosted in the Hino Hub, Wilko found a novel place to store his cane…
If you kept going down the escape road at Hell Corner about 200m, on the left is this farm with a rather industrial-sized bee-keeping setup.
The property also has a rather large firewood stockpile, which no doubt would have made a roaring trade this week.
It’s a street circuit…
We noted early in the week that this property has made good use of the marshal’s point that is located at the end of their driveway, but using the shelter to store their garbage bins, presumably outside of race weekends.
Animals on the Mountain
Best eats in Bathurst
Back on Wednesday, we noted that the best tucker on top of The Mountain is served up by the Bathurst City Red Tops canteen at McPhillamy Park.
Want proof? This bacon and egg roll was $7, and sets the standard in quality and value for the entire Australian motorsport tour.
The media centre has a particularly festive feel around it this year, with thanks to Repco.
Craig Lowndes: Still Got It
It has been notable that during the autograph signings, the draw of Craig Lowndes in the Supercheap wildcard has dwarfed those of the regular competitors, although the line next door for Simona De Silvestro was also sizeable.
Saturday morning life on the infield
Of note is the rather large new shed at the Mount Panorama Winery, plus the ever-present Shu Roo.
Spring has Sprung
This ever-so-cute baby plover can be found between the Porsche hospitality centre and the race track on the run into Murray’s Corner.
Terrifyingly, its parents are never very far away…
Mistakes have been made, and corrections issued
TRT: A Man Down
Sadly, this weekend, The Race Torque is a man down in the Bathurst media centre, with Dale Rodgers missing in action. We’re missing you buddy, and can’t wait for you to be here in 2024 for 1000 visit number 38.
FROM THE INTERNET…
No Context Needed
Good Doggo Loves it
Look out Tom Cruise!
ICYMI: The Bathurst 1000 on TRT
Race Week Lead Up:
The weather is warming up, people suddenly taking up hand sanitiser
Not being able to sleep before Bogan Chistmas, the gastro getting around the paddock
It’s Top Ten Shootout Day!
As yoinked from the internet – apologies, we’ve forgotten the original artist, this is too good not to share again…