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'Rivers' worried Supercars front-runners in Sydney

So-called 'rivers' flowing across the Sydney Motorsport Park surface had the top three on edge in the closing stages of last night's wild wet weather Supercars race.

Supercars field on a wet track

Photo by: Mark Horsburgh, Edge Photographics

The final heat of the Sydney SuperNight provided a unique spectacle, Supercars staging its first wet weather race under lights.

However the enthralling affair didn't play out in a full, the race red-flagged with seven laps to go after the safety car had been called to recover Jake Kostecki's crashed Holden.

Officials ultimately decided not to restart the race.

While there was far from universal agreement that abandoning the race was the right call, the top three were somewhat predictably in favour of the decision.

According to race winner Jamie Whincup, the issue was the build-up of water, both standing and flowing across the track, once cars weren't lapping at speed.

"It was what you saw on the TV. It was fairly torrential,” said the seven-time series champion.

“I don’t think it gets much worse than that. In the dark, teeming down.

“There was quite a decent river across the track at Turn 4 and Turn 1 was getting a bit how-ya-going with all the puddles and everything. It was a matter of just tip it in and hang on.

“As I said after the race, the driver in me wanted to keep going but the team owner thought it’s sensible [to stop]… we’re coming back next week, we can’t tear up six or seven cars and have a grid of about 18 next week.

“I believe it was the right call in the end.”

Anton De Pasquale, who finished second, agreed that parts of the track had become too water logged to consider a restart.

“Pretty sketchy, especially once the Safety Car got called, then it really started bucketing down and getting pretty wet,” said the Dick Johnson Racing star.

“It was on the verge. Most of the track was alright, but there were two or three [corners] that were pretty bad, just rivers across the track and you sort of became a passenger for part of the corner.

“You never want that. Especially a restart in that, something’s going to go down for sure.”

Chaz Mostert, who went from the back of the grid to third in a remarkable drive, doubled down on post-race comments that the spray was actually better under lights than it is in the day time.

However he also conceded that the rivers flowing across the track were straying into "dangerous" territory by the time the race was stopped.

“The spray for me was actually the best it’s ever been in that kind of wet weather conditions,” Mostert explained.

“In the day time when you have the spray that far back it’s so glarey that you really get whited out in the eyes. Here, you see the spray, but you can still see the track limits with the yellow lines and stuff like that.

“I think just before the Safety Car got called at the end it was actually probably perfect timing, more [because] there were a couple of corners that were just getting too dangerous, Turn 1 especially.

“It didn’t matter what line you took there, it felt like you were about to go off into the grass and there were a couple of other rivers through the track as well.

“Kudos to Supercars for calling that. Obviously, the fans in the stands want to see a fantastic finish, but safety, and cars, and all that stuff, it was the right call.”

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