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Mount Panorama
Tuesday, June 25, 2024


DICK Johnson Racing’s decision to pair Will and Alex Davison for the 2021 Repco Bathurst 1000 gives the brothers their fifth shot at achieving Great Race glory together.

Alex, 41, had long been on standby to co-drive the #17 Shell Mustang in the event that Scott McLaughlin was unable to return to Australia from his base in the United States.

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The Davisons already command a significant place in the long history of brothers to have shared a car in the Mount Panorama endurance classic.

They previously paired up at Erebus Motorsport (2014/15) and 23Red Racing (2018/19). A fourth place in their first hitout together remains their best finish as a pairing.

Since the first running of the race at Bathurst in 1963, a total of 21 pairs of brothers have teamed up at least once, and one of those partnerships netted the ultimate prize.

V8 Sleuth takes a look at five other famous brother pairings in Bathurst history, as well as a handful of the lesser-known runners.

Ian and Leo Geoghegan

The Geoghegan/Geoghegan Cortina in 1965. Pic: an1images.com / Trevor Thomas

The Geoghegans hold the record for the most Bathurst starts as brothers having combined a total of six times between 1963 and ’69 in a series of fast Fords.

They received the chequered flag as winners in 1967 but were later demoted a lap and dropped to second place after a lap scoring error was discovered.

Peter and Phil Brock

The Brock/Brock Torana in 1976. Pic: an1images.com / Dale Rodgers

The Brock brothers teamed to finish third under the Team Brock banner in 1976 following Peter’s split with the Holden Dealer Team, and then recorded fourth a year later with Bill Paterson Racing.

Phil was also famously scheduled to drive what turned out to be the winning #25 HDT car in 1983 but did not get a run in the race after Peter Brock and Larry Perkins took over following the retirement of #05.

Neal and Rick Bates

The Bates/Bates Corolla in 1992. Pic: an1images.com / Graeme Neander

Best known for their rallying exploits, the Bates boys are not only brothers but identical twins and teamed up for the Bathurst 1000 on three occasions.

They shared a Toyota Corolla in the 1991 and ’92 races and then reunited in Mark Noske’s INXS-backed Ford Falcon in 2003, which proved to be the last Great Race for both drivers.

Geoff and David Brabham

David and Geoff Brabham with Sir Jack at Bathurst in 1997. Pic: an1images.com / Dirk Klynsmith

The sons of triple Formula 1 World Champion Sir Jack Brabham both had stellar international careers of their own, and also hold the distinction of being the only brothers to win the Bathurst 1000 together.

They won in their only start as a pairing, the 1997 AMP 1000 for Super Tourers, after Diet Coke BMW teammates Paul Morris and Craig Baird were disqualified for breaching the maximum driving time regulations.

Todd and Rick Kelly

Rick and Todd Kelly finished second in 2006. Pic: an1images.com / Dirk Klynsmith

Todd and Rick teamed for Bathurst just twice in their careers; the first controversially as part of a swap within the HRT/HSV driver ranks in 2006 that netted a second place in Rick’s Toll HSV Dealer Team entry.

Their other campaign together came in the first year with their own Kelly Racing squad in 2009, before a rule change declaring that full-time drivers could no longer pair up ended their hopes of continuing together.

What of the rest?

The Lusty brothers first teamed up in 1984. Pic: an1images.com / Dale Rodgers

Any discussion of brothers teaming up at Bathurst should include mention of two of the most familiar privateer families from the race’s history, the Lustys and the Gulsons.

Graham and John Lusty paired on five occasions in Commodores between 1984 and 1993, while Ray and Paul Gulson combined four times between 1972 and 1979, once in a Falcon and three times in Alfa Romeos.

Kel and Allan Gough are also notables having shared a car in the Great Race three times, co-driving Holden Geminis each year from 1977-79.

While some races have featured as many as three brother combinations, just once since 1991 has there been more than one pairing; in 2015 when Drew and Aaren Russell joined the Davisons on the grid.

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