By Chris Dobie


Toll Holden Racing Team driver Mark Skaife, today concluded that 40
years is a very long time in motorsport ! This was after inspecting a
replica of the first Holden to win at Bathurst in 1968, parked alongside
his 2008-spec VE Commodore racer in Mount Panorama ’s pit lane.

original 1968 Holden Monaro GTS327 was driven to a historic victory by
Bruce McPhee and Barry Mulholland, who led home a trifecta of Monaros to
post the first of Holden’s 25 victories in the 40 races since at the
legendary Western NSW circuit.

father, Russell was a mechanic and worked with McPhee on his race cars
– the Skaife family hailing from Wyong on the NSW central coast as did

a five-time Bathurst 1000 winner and five-time V8 Supercar champion,
Skaife – who was just 18 months old at the time of the ‘68 victory
– said the road car-based racers of 40 years ago were a very different
beast to today’s purpose-built racing cars.

cars were very lightly modified and the engines had to be run in
properly. The cars were more like a showroom car of today,” he said.

suppose it (the 1968 win) shows the difference in the way racing was
conducted in those days, because a local dealer, like a Wyong Motors,
could assist in building a car that could win Bathurst .”

Skaife, who remains friends with McPhee, said the win 40 years ago by
the locally-backed Monaro was a big deal. “The whole of the Central
Coast was just ecstatic at Bruce winning it,” he says “He was a
fantastic competitor at Bathurst .

helped Bruce for several years with his cars, right back from when I was
an apprentice. My Holden utes were full of oxy bottles and all the gear
for Bathurst .”

Skaife and co-driver, reigning V8 Supercar Champion Garth Tander will
drive the #1 Toll Holden Racing Team VE Commodore in the 2008 Supercheap
Auto Bathurst 1000, to be raced this Sunday, and are among the favorites
to win. 

Years Apart – Mark Skaife with both Bruce McPhee’s 1968
Bathurst-winning Holden Monaro GTS 327 and the #1 Toll Holden Racing
Team VE Commodore that he and Garth Tander will drive in Sunday’s
Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000




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