The top ten touring car team-mate clashes
A classic saying is that your team-mate is your worst enemy – and it has certainly been proved true on several occasions in the touring car world.
Join us as we take a look into the top ten clashes from the touring car championships that we cover.
10 – James Courtney vs. Garth Tander – V8 Supercars – 2015
What’s worse than taking out one team-mate on the first lap? James Courtney unfortunately discovered in 2015 that pushing two of your team’s cars off the road is the quickest way to be taken off multiple Christmas card lists. Driving for the Holden Racing Team (Walkinshaw Racing) with Garth Tander, Courtney was squeezed into the first corner and ended up coming together with Tander’s #22 car. To make matters worse, the two HRT entries managed to tag the Walkinshaw-prepared car of Lee Holdsworth as well, putting all three cars to the back of the order on lap one.
9 – Agustin Canapino vs. Néstor Girolami – Super TC 2000 – 2015
Peugeot team-mates Agustin Canapino and Néstor Girolami came together on the very last lap of the 2015 Super TC 2000 race at Rafaela. Canapino had caught his team-mate after a late safety car period and the two made contact at the final chicane, handing victory to independent Ford driver Mariano Werner. Girolami was later awarded the victory as Canapino was deemed guilty for the incident, and Werner was disqualified due to an illegal rear wing.
8 – Chaz Mostert vs. Cameron Waters – Supercars – 2017, 2018 & 2019
Possibly the two team-mates with the most history of running into each other in the Supercars Championship would be Tickford Racing’s Chaz Mostert and Cam Waters. With their first incident coming at the 2017 Bathurst 1000 as both drivers were in contention to win the race, a pattern started to emerge when an ambitious pass from Mostert on Waters’ co-driver David Russell took the #6 machine out of the 2018 Great Race.
Making a hat-trick in 2019, Mostert’s move from the team was all but cemented when he made contact with Waters again at the end of Conrod Straight, taking both cars out of the top five in a race where the team could’ve maximised points. Although the pair are friends off-track, the three incidents would’ve tested the relationship, if not Waters’ patience, until Mostert departed Tickford for Walkinshaw Andretti United at the end of 2019.
7 – Steve Robertson vs. Paul Radisich – BTCC – 1996
The 1996 British Touring Car Championship season turned out to be dreadful for the Ford team with an uncompetitive and unreliable Mondeo. And the season could not have started in a worse way as Steve Robertson spun his car and collected team-mate Paul Radisich. Two brand new Ford Mondeos were left stranded next to each other in the most embarrassing way.
6 – Yvan Muller vs. Alain Menu – WTCC – 2011
There was plenty of inter team rivalry in the extremely competitive Chevrolet line-up of Yvan Muller, Alain Menu and Rob Huff for the 2011 World Touring Car Championship. And the first incident between them came as soon as the third race weekend at Monza when Muller had caught Menu on the last lap of the first heat. Muller tagged Menu, sending the Swiss driver into the gravel and retirement. The Frenchman was penalised with a suspended ten-place grid penalty for two events. There was more to come throughout the season, with Muller and Huff clashing at Donington Park.
5 – Matt Neal vs. Gordon Shedden – BTCC – 2011
The Honda duo of Gordon Shedden and Matt Neal looked set for a 1-2 in the British Touring Car Championship races at Oulton Park in 2011. But it all went wrong at the very last corner of the last lap. Neal made an over ambitious move on his team-mate in greasy conditions, resulting in two Hondas in the gravel and Chevrolet driver Jason Plato sailing past to claim victory. Neal later described it as “a horrible mistake” and apologised to his team-mate.
4 – Yvan Muller vs. Jason Plato – BTCC – 2001
The 2001 British Touring Car Championship season saw a furious fight between Vauxhall factory team-mates Yvan Muller and Jason Plato. The inter team rivalry had begun the year before when Plato had to let past Muller while leading early in the season. The 2001 fight culminated at Silverstone when Muller slowed down on the last lap due to apparent fuel shortage. As Plato passed him, the two made contact, a controversy that split the team in half and further worsened the relationship between the two drivers.
3 – Will Hoy vs. Andy Rouse – BTCC – 1992
One of the most iconic team-mate clashes is the one of Toyota drivers Andy Rouse and Will Hoy during the Brands Hatch GP races of the 1992 British Touring Car Championship. The duo fought furiously for the lead with Vauxhall’s John Cleland right behind. As Hoy passed Rouse back for the lead heading to Dingle Dell, the two made contact and went off into the barriers. Hoy labeled it a racing incident while team-mate and team owner Rouse was left fuming. Meanwhile, Cleland inherited the lead and later stated he nearly went off track laughing after witnessing the two team-mates fall over each other.
2 – Julian Bailey vs. Will Hoy – BTCC – 1993
Second place on our list once again features Will Hoy and the Toyota team. Although this time without Andy Rouse and blame not to be landed on Hoy. Instead it was ex-Formula 1 driver and team-mate Julian Bailey who made a very optimistic move on Hoy while fighting for the lead, resulting in a spectacular roll and retirement for Hoy. The incident gave us the iconic words of the legendary BTCC commentator Murray Walker: “The car upside down is a Toyota!”
1 – Tony Longhurst vs. Paul Morris – ASTCC – 1994
Number one on our list is the only clash in this list that resulted in acutal fisticuffs took place in the 1994 Australian Super Touring Championship races at Winton. Tony Longhurst Racing team-mates Tony Longhurst and Paul Morris held a massive lead over the remainder over the field but came together in spectacular style towards the end of the race.
The two went side-by-side and interlocked wheels, sending them both off in to the barriers. Team owner Longhurst jumped out of the car before it had even stopped to hit his team-mate through the side window. Longhurst was disqualified from the event after the incident, handing victory to Morris. The two reconciled quickly after the incident, with Morris often saying that Donald “Don” King was on the phone for his team-mate and boss.