Race 11 of the Repco Supercars Championship was red flagged after Scott Pye suffered a big crash at the end of the first lap at Wanneroo Raceway.
The Reds were deployed around 12:11 a.m. local time / 2:11 p.m. AEST, as the field moved under the safety car on lap three, with Commodore ZB No. 20 de Pye sitting next to the front straight.
Fortunately, the Team 18 driver was able to get out of the vehicle under his own power and walk away.
However, the stoppage was necessitated by damage the impact caused to a door halfway along the pit wall.
Replays showed Pye tangled up with Jack Le Brocq in the back half of the field as they exited Turn 7 (last corner) at the end of the standing lap.
It looked like they had made front-to-back contact as they exited the large exit curb, before Pye continued to cross the track to the drivers right as they accelerated along the straight.
However, Matt Stone Racing’s #34 entry overlapped and the #20 car was flipped onto its nose once it reached the edge of the track, spinning it into a hard hit with the pit wall.
The Team 18 car is highly unlikely to return to action today at the Bunnings Trade Perth SuperNight.
Pye said of his physical condition: “I’m fine, just disappointed.
“There must have been a slight overlap, it had to be the quarterback at the front bar, like so small.
“Sometimes people forget they can lift too so I don’t know I thought I was clear and tried to defend but obviously I wasn’t but f### he just didn’t raise.
“It was huge so we went out today. It was such a hit.
Le Brocq was more certain that there was an overlap.
“I just came out of the last corner and had a bit of an overlap there and Scott just kept crossing,” he said.
“I don’t know, it’s not good to see damaged cars, but at the same time we’re all racing, it’s just a shame I think.”
On suggestions from Pye and Team 18 boss Charlie Schwerkolt that he should have lifted, Le Brocq replied: “I guess you can, but half the time he’s going to do the same thing and how much how many times will you try to drive us out of the way?
“It’s unfortunate to see but it’s one of those things, we’re here to race and unfortunately if you try to get people off the track unfortunately it could happen.
“I don’t want to see damaged cars, it’s the last thing we want in the pit lane…”
Schwerkolt, who had felt the MSR rider “could have backed off”, reaffirmed Pye’s suggestion that the #20 is out for the rest of the weekend.
“It’s huge [damage]“, he remarked.
“I think the whole birdcage… a massive, massive hit in that left-back, so I don’t see much going on there.
“I think we’re just trying to get him in the truck and regroup for Winton.”
Cameron Waters (Tickford Racing) was in the lead at the time of the pit stop, having jumped pole sitter Will Davison (Dick Johnson Racing) from outside the front row.
Lee Holdsworth (Grove Racing) sustained significant damage to the left front corner of his #10 Mustang in a separate clash with Thomas Randle (Tickford) as the field raced into Turn 2 on the first lap.
Race control said no further action would be taken following the incident, as a new lower control arm was fitted to Holdsworth’s car while proceedings were suspended.
A reboot is expected around 1:00 p.m. local time/3:00 p.m. AEST.
Updated 2:52 p.m. AEST
The clerk of the course indicates that the “best effort” will be a five-minute signal at 1:00 p.m. local time/3:00 p.m. AEST.
Updated 2:56 p.m. AEST
Five-minute signal at 1:00 p.m. local time confirmed.