“Not Being Able to Say Much”- SVG Left Disheartened as Supercars Rival Faced With “Sad Situation” Repeat

Published 02/01/2024, 6:33 AM EST

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Turmoil has taken over the Supercars championship. A few days ago, defending champion Brodie Kostecki was confirmed to opt out of racing for Erebus Motorsport. As per the recently surfaced reports, following a fallout with his team in August last year, the 26-year-old has decided to act upon his thoughts. With both of their drivers leaving the team, Erebus is in a tough spot for the 2024 season.

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It remains to be seen if Erebus releases Brodie Kostecki from his contract, which was due to end in 2024. Should that happen, the #1 Camaro driver might even lose his opportunity to race for Richard Childress Racing in the intended five Cup Series races. Amidst the different reports emerging from Australia, 3-time Supercars champion and latest NASCAR import Shane van Gisbergen has experienced a deja vu. The 34-year-old tweeted his experience of a similar situation from a decade ago.

Shane van Gisbergen has been tested by Erebus Motorsport as well

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At the end of 2012, Shane van Gisbergen announced that he’d retire from Supercars racing owing to a lack of enjoyment. However, SVG had signed a fresh agreement with Stone Brothers Racing before making the announcement. The multi-year contract would last for three years of SVG’s services. Initially, SBR complied with Gisbergen’s wishes and released him from the 3-year contract.

However, in early 2013, SVG shocked everyone with a surprise move to SBR’s rival, Tekno Motorsport. SBR rebranded to Erebus Motorsport the previous year and realized the move violated its termination agreement with the Trackhouse Racing driver. The clause prohibited him from racing in another Supercar vehicle in 2013. The matter was eventually resolved outside of court in 2014.

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Brodie Kostecki’s situation is somewhat similar to SVG’s. Having been in the position, the Auckland Native tweeted his sadness as he wrote, “What a sad situation to read about in Australia right now with @BrodieKostecki . I went through a similar situation 10 or so years ago – Not being able to say much, plus the team and media setting the narrative out of your control is not fun.”

Yesterday, Erebus Motorsport confirmed that Brodie Kostecki won’t be racing in the Supercars season opener, the Bathurst 500, while also iterating that the driver is not leaving the team altogether. With his NASCAR debut coming through the alliance between RCR and Erebus last year, it remains to be seen if Kostecki will drive for the Cup Series team in the five races as announced earlier. Kostecki may also leave the Supercars circuit to race in NASCAR in a full-time role. However, for now, what’s clear is things are not as bad between the two .

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Erebus Motorsport hints at no bad blood with Brodie Kostecki

Brodie Kostecki’s U-turn came as a shock for everyone. Sitting out a race as a defending championship is undoubtedly a tough decision to take. Replacing Kostecki is Todd Hazelwood, who is confirmed to drive the #99 Chevrolet in the Bathurst 500 later. With Kostecki’s exclusion, Erebus loses a big chunk of its firepower on the race track.

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However, in a contradicting response to the surfaced reports that suggested Kostecki’s departure, Erebus stated, “Contrary to media reports, Brodie Kostecki remains part of the Erebus Motorsport family and is a valued member of our team. Brodie has indicated he’s not in a position to take part in the opening round of the 2024 Supercars Championship.”

Supercars CEO Shane Howard also showed solidarity amidst the team’s struggles. He said, “On behalf of everyone at Supercars, we wish Brodie all the best, and we sincerely hope to witness his return to the Repco Supercars Championship in the future. In the meantime, we extend our support to Erebus as they navigate the start of the 2024 Repco Supercars Championship with Todd Hazelwood and Jack Le Brocq driving for the team.”

When Shane van Gisbergen announced his decision to join NASCAR as a full-time driver, Triple Eight Racing began its search for a replacement. Its search ended with former Erebus Motorsport driver Will Brown. Brown has moved to fill SVG’s boots for the title rivals. Following Brown’s decision, Erebus signed Jack Le Brocq as its new driver for 2024.

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While its two drivers have more than 250 starts and two wins between them, a successful championship defense seems like a distant reality. With Kostecki supposedly following in SVG’s path, Supercars might have to rely on young talents to deliver the goods sooner than later.

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Written by:

Ansuman Abhisek

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Ansuman Abhisek is a NASCAR Writer at EssentiallySports. Even before he made his way into the world of motorsports, he had already made a name for himself in the sports journalism field by working as a writer for a few media houses. Now, having covered multiple Cup races live, he has often been the first to report on-track incidents and also provide his readers with an in-depth analysis of the same.
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Edited by:

Ariva Debnath

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