'Unreal' fireball, scary 290km/h head-on as THREE huge crashes rock Bathurst
This Bathurst 1000 weekend has delivered a host of massive crashes even before Sunday’s race arrived, and Saturday offered up three scary crashes from three different categories.
First it was S5000 open-wheeler category which saw a 290km/h head-on crash at The Chase.
Then there was a TGRA 86 Series four-car crash with one car bursting into flames.
Then the Super 2 series saw another nasty shunt as a car slammed into the wall and ended up accelerating head-first into a tyre barrier.
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MASSIVE CRASH IN S5000
The Chase is the fastest stretch of tarmac in Australian motorsport - and when drivers crash there, it’s always scary. Saturday was no different, as four cars flew through the dirt.
In the first lap of a S5000 Tasman Series race, Joey Mawson was trying to get past Jordan Boys (who would win a Super2 series race later in the day) heading into the chase at nearly 290km/h.
But he clipped the rear of Boys and sent him spinning across the sand and back across the track, throwing up a mountain of dust for following drivers to contend with.
Roberto Mehri was forced to run wide at the corner and across the grass, but managed to continue. Mawson recovered from his spin and limped on as a Safety car was called.
But Japanese driver Yoshi Katayama, blinded by the cloud of dust, ran straight off the track and into the prone car of Boys in a monster shunt. The race was red flagged but eventually restarted.
It’s not the first time Mawson and former Japan F3 champion Katayama crashed, having both wiped out in Friday’s race. Katayama found the wall at Griffins Bend, before Mawson crashed out at The Cutting.
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CRAZY FIREBALL CRASH
There was another massive crash in the TGRA 86 Series, on the first lap of Saturday’s Race 2. Lachie Bloxsom lost his rear end at The Dipper and spun out, causing chaos in a multi-car crash that left one car on fire.
Kai Allan made heavy contact and his car lit on fire – only to quickly extinguish itself in bizarre fashion.
One commentator declared: “That’s remarkable. That’s unreal!”
Ryan Hadden took huge contact on the driver’s side door, while Michael Sherwell also crashed out as a result. Rossi Johnson was another to wreck their car – his having recently been completely rebuilt after a crash in Townsville. Johnson was seen slamming his door and kicking at the car as well as headbutting the front bonnet in frustration.
PAYNE FEELS THE PAIN
Finally, in the Super 2 series, Steve Page suffered a horrible solo crash on the top of the mountain.
Page missed the apex of Turn 8 and smashed the wall at around 180km/h, before sliding along the wall and eventually launching head-first into a tyre barrier.
It was revealed shortly afterwards that he had lost control of his wheels and brakes on the initial collision, with the throttle stuck open – meaning he powered forward into the tyre wall, rather than slowing down.
The packed gallery of fans watching on cheered and roared at the massive shunt.
The race finished behind a safety car, with second-place Broc Feeney doing enough to seal the Super 2 championship. 19-year-old Feeney not only became the first driver to win both the Super 3 and Super 2 series, but also was the youngest-ever victor of both championships (at 16 then 19 respectively).
Feeney will replace retiring legend Jamie Whincup for Red Bull Ampol Racing in the Supercars series next year.