Peter Brock won many races at many different circuits, but he always saved his best for Bathurst.
His record of nine victories (10 if you include the Bathurst 24-Hour) is unlikely ever to be broken, and hopefully never is, as it’s up there with Bradman’s batting average as a unique Aussie achievement.
His career spanned more than 30 years, beginning in the production-based era of the late-’60s when cars had to be nursed the distance and ending in the late-’90s, by which time it was a flat-out sprint in a purpose-built touring car.
Here are five of Brocky’s best Bathurst moments captured on film.
1979 – Lighting it up on the last lap
It wasn’t his first win - in fact it was his fourth - but it was undoubtedly his best. The winning margin of six laps will never be repeated, but it was Brock’s boldness to set a new lap record on the last lap that truly marks it out as special.
Brock had attempted the feat the year before, only to be baulked by an Alfa Romeo coming down the mountain. There would be no such dramas this time capping off the perfect weekend for the Holden Dealer Team.
1986 – In-car commentary
Bathurst is one of the world’s most difficult racetracks, but Brock makes it look it all too easy on RaceCam during the 1986 race, casually commentating a lap in one of the best bits of Aussie race footage ever recorded.
The 1986 race was notable for Brock teaming up with his former nemesis Allan Moffat. Moffat blotted his copybook early by sticking the Commodore in the wall in practice, however the pair ran strongly in the race until an oil cooler problem dropped them to fifth.
1987 – Slipping and sliding in the wet
Brock’s final Bathurst 1000 victory might have been decided in a court room rather than on track, but it was well deserved thanks to an unbelievable spell of driving in slippery conditions.
Pitting early for slicks on a drying but still very wet track, Brock drifts his VL Commodore beautifully between the walls, providing a masterclass in car control.
1991 – Tooheys Top 10 Shootout
Time heals all wounds, and four years after his public acrimonious split with Holden Brock was back at Bathurst in a Holden. His effort in the 1991 Top 10 Shootout may only have netted sixth on the grid, but it’s a lap that anyone who witnessed it will never forget.
Totally committed, eyes on stalks, sideways everywhere, Brock wrestles the VN SS – which in hindsight was a very good looking race car – into submission, but Mark Skaife’s equally epic pole lap in the mighty R32 GT-R was almost 3.5sec faster.
1998 – Brock hitches a ride with Brad Jones
It’s not often you’ll see Peter Brock in the passenger seat, but in 1998 he hitched a ride with Brad Jones in the Audi A4 quattro super tourer to trade some tips.
Brock had officially retired a year earlier but doesn’t look too keen on a new career in the silly seat, nervous laughter covering up the fact that he looks quite uncomfortable, even at ‘demonstration’ pace.
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