Safety Cars punctuate opening 12 Hour stanza

The Safety Car has already made five appearances through the opening four hours in Bathurst.

The race began under a curtain of thick fog in darkness, with pole-sitter Chaz Mostert leading away.

Mostert trailed the Safety Car, which held the field under yellow for 10 minutes.

It would make four later appearances through four hours.

Through four hours, Markus Winkelhock led in the #777 Audi, which started fourth.

Zane Morse crashed the #52 MARC entry across the top in the first hour.

Later, Brenton Grove beached the #4 Porsche at Hell Corner.

As Grove’s car was retrieved, Jack Perkins spin the #19 Mercedes-AMG into the wall at The Chase.

The Perkins car retrieval extended the full-course yellow period.

The stranded Dale Wood #50 KTM at John Hinxman Vista triggered the fourth Safety Car.

All the while, the #17 Audi had worked its way into the lead.

Drivers managed to negate the early-race fog, although the conditions earned the ire of Mostert.

“That’s one of the most ridiculous things I have ever done in a car,” Mostert said.

“That’s so dangerous out there. I feel so bad for the Ams getting in the car now.

“You can’t see apexes, you can’t see walls, and it’s worse when you’re out front, you just don’t have the guy to follow.

“[The fog] changes from lap to lap. It depends where the fog blows into, but Skyline for me is the most dangerous.”

Visibility improved, although rain began to fall just over an hour into the race.

It came just as Perkins slid into the Chase wall.

Fog returned after the third hour, with the Safety Car deployed twice more due to the deteriorating conditions.

The race is scheduled to end at 5:13pm local time/plus one lap.