Citizen Craig: Ultimate Honour For Aussie Sport's Best Bloke
Win the Bathurst 1000 and you become a folk hero in the NSW town of 35,000, which for the record is the 15th most populous town or city in NSW.
Win the race six times, as Craig Lowndes has done, and you basically own the place.
Win it six times while being a thoroughly good bloke, being awarded an Order of Australia Medal for services to both your sport and the community through your road safety work, as well as voicing an app for Bathurst Council which shares motorsport stories around the iconic Mt Panorama circuit, and there is one one course of action left.
You become a citizen of Bathurst.
Lowndes will be officially awarded honorary Bathurst citizenship at this year’s Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, which runs from October 4 to 7 and will be broadcast on Network Ten.
This will be the motorsport legend's last Great Race as a fully-fledged full-time Supercars Championship driver -- although he does intend to return as a co-driver.
Regardless of whether he adds to his wins in 1996, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010 and 2015, this year's race will be all about Lowndesy.
Lowndes is 44 these days, and although this is his last full year in the Supercars Championship, which he has won three times, he remains in good form. The likeable Queenslander currently sits fourth in the drivers championship, and finished third at his most recent start in the Sandown 500.
So who knows what this Bathurst legend and soon-to-be citizen can pull off at Mt Panorama this year?
“I’ve always said, and I haven't been shy saying, that I always want to win at Bathurst over a championship," Lowndes said this week.
That's the kind of talk that really gets Bathurst locals frothing like the champagne on the podium after the Great Race.