Throwback Thursday: 2004 Supercars at Darwin

Mark Skaife goes off after contact with Marcos Ambrose. Picture: Network 10

In 2004, the fourth round of the Supercars series headed to the top end, where the championship heated up after several controversies surrounding eventual championship winner, Marcos Ambrose.

The Holden Racing Team pair of Todd Kelly and Mark Skaife sat on the front row for the first race, with Skaife leading the pack into Turn 1.

A few laps into the race, Skaife’s lead was under threat, trying to hold off his team-mate, as well as Ambrose and Jason Bright.

Skaife ran wide at Turn 4, which allowed his team-mate Todd Kelly to pull up to the outside of Turn 5, when they made light contact with Bright and Ambrose that sent Todd Kelly’s #22 off the road, dropping valuable track position.

On the final lap of the race, Ambrose was shadowing his rival Skaife, before having a bold dive at the final corner to go for the win.

The move didn’t pay off, as Skaife was sent off into the gravel with a broken steering arm, and Russell Ingall swept to the inside of both of them to take the win, with Todd Kelly coming in second and Ambrose in third.

“That was very nice of them to leave all that gap for me, don’t you think?” Ingall said on the radio after the win.

Both Skaife and Ambrose were fuming after the incident, blaming each other.

The results of Race 1 meant that Ingall would line up on pole, with Todd Kelly beside him and his team-mate Ambrose in behind him, and Skaife starting down the back.

Ingall and Todd Kelly had a drag race down to the first corner when Ambrose battled to stop his car which sent him straight into his Stone Brothers Racing team-mate in Ingall.

Ingall spun while Ambrose went to the front.

Bright, who was right behind the incident, also sustained light damage to the front of his car.

The race continued under green flag conditions, now with Ingall, Ambrose and Skaife all trying to claw their way back through the field after Ambrose served a drive-through penalty.

Rick Kelly would eventually beat his Brother Todd Kelly to the win, for his third career victory.

At the start of the third and final race of the weekend, Craig Lowndes, who started in fifth spot, stalled on the grid, luckily getting going without being hit by another driver.

Todd Kelly would bring home the win, while Ambrose was able to fight his way back into second in a photo finish with Steven Richards.

Richards would hold the championship lead heading into the next round.

The Repco Supercars Championship is in Darwin again this weekend.

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