Home' V8X Supercar Magazine : Feb March 2014 Issue 79 Contents 61
date of Birth
20th May 1981
Height 181cm / Weight 74kg
Children, Oliver (3), Austin (1)
Watersports, golf, training,
Most people think that Mark Winterbottom
made a mistake on the last lap at Bathurst
in October 2013.
As he thundered up Mountain Straight and
into Griffin’s Bend for the final time it looked
as if he had panicked and braked early in a
mistimed move that forced Jamie Whincup
wide as he took urgent evading action. But
In fact, it was a calculated play that
Frosty planned as the best way to break the
invisible link between the two battlers at the
head of the field.
He wanted to make sure he had clear air
across the top of the mountain and a tiny bit
of breathing space before they lunged down
to Whincup’s favoured battleground in the
Chase and Murray’s Corner.
“That was deliberate, for sure,” Winterbot-
tom says. “It was deliberate in where I put
him. I always thought he wasn’t going to
make it around me there. That gave me a
So Frosty had planned carefully and it
worked; he had Whincup right where he
“I thought to myself, ‘I know it’s off-
camber there, so to go around the outside
on the marbles you would have to have an
incredible amount of grip’.”
In the history of Bathurst there has been
only one serious success around the outside
at Griffin’s; that was Craig Lowndes’ rookie
move on the experienced John Bowe during
his first Bathurst start with the Holden
Racing Team in 1994.
Bowe was so shocked that he put up
no resistance and neither did the Holden
Racing Team, which immediately decided to
sign ‘The Kid’ to a long-term deal.
But Bathurst 2013 was very different
and, recalling his frantic battle at the front,
Winterbottom cannot resist a smile.
“It felt more comfortable in the car than
when you were watching it on the TV,” he
says. “I’m obviously glad the way it hap-
pened. That was the way I planned. I was
always good across the top, but he was very
strong into the last corner, so I didn’t want
to have him on my tail for the last corner.”
Frosty says he knew exactly what was at
stake when he put his plan into action.
“You have to have a go,” he says. “He
probably thought he only had one shot. But
it gave me a clear buffer for the last lap.”
As he relives the biggest breakthrough
of his career, Winterbottom also recalls the
“You’re not a blubbering mess but you’re
emotional, for sure,” he says. “You see your
wife there, your kids there, the fans, and
then getting a hug from Richo...
“You always have a feeling that you’re
going to get these things but this time I
really didn’t know until the last lap.”
With the Peter Brock Trophy safely in the
cabinet, how does Winterbottom feel after
finally getting one up on Whincup?
“If he looks at it in hindsight he’d prob-
ably change it,” he says. “So it was good to
push him into that position and give him a
The Falcon is set to die in 2016 but there is also the
prospect of a Mustang on local roads from 2015.
“Obviously Ford hasn’t got the deal long-term but I
feel they are going to stay around,” he says. “You could
never sign a one-year deal pending what the manufac-
turer is going to do.
“If Ford is going to be in the sport they will be with
our team. You’ve got to sign with the team that logically
has that manufacturer backing. It could be a Mustang.”
Right now, there are lots of other things to consider,
including the end of his career.
“When we get to 2018 – I’ll be 37 then – I do wonder,”
he says. “Craig Lowndes is 39 and still doing well. Age
isn’t the thing; it’s motivation. The day you wake up and
don’t want to do it...”
master and apprentice:
winterbottom is joined by
youngster chaz mostert at ford
performance racing in 2014.
leFt: winterbottom’s 2013
title challenge came to an
end following contact with
the wall in the saturday
race at the sydney 500 and
saw him drop to fourth in
bathurst 2013: ThaT lasT-lap showdown
V8X79 p58-61 Winterbottom.indd 61
10/12/13 5:50:18 PM
Links Archive April May 2014 Issue 80 Navigation Previous Page Next Page