Former Triple Eight Supercars owner Roland Dane claims ‘toxic workplace’ behind Brodie Kostecki’s split with Erebus

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Legendary former Supercars team owner Roland Dane believes a “toxic workplace” is behind reigning champion Brodie Kostecki’s desire to leave Erebus Motorsport.

And Dane has called on the Supercars hierarchy to resolve the situation and ensure Kostecki finds a new place on the grid for 2024.

The team announced last week that Kostecki would sit out the opening round of the season, with Todd Hazlewood to race at the Bathurst 500 later this month.

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It set off an ugly chain reaction with three of the team’s biggest sponsors pulling their agreements with Erebus.

Kostecki is still in talks with the team in an attempt to negotiate a split, but has not spoken publicly as to his reasons for wanting to depart.

However, it is understood that Kostecki has fallen out with team management and CEO Barry Ryan and it appears unlikely he will race for Erebus at all in 2024.

Now Dane, former owner of Triple Eight Race Engineering (Red Bull Racing) who led them to nine drivers’ championships as team boss before stepping down after the 2021 season, has called out Erebus over the ongoing saga.

“I will be as clear as I can be. This is not an issue of mental health, as alluded to by Supercars, at least not on the part of Brodie,” he wrote in a column for Speedcafe.

“This is a case of what appears to be a toxic workplace. Other teams and Supercars have seen evidence of this in the past.

“For instance, some 18 months ago an email (addressed to pretty much everyone involved in Gen3 development) emanated from the team in question that was so venomous that the CEO of Supercars was obliged to step in and attempt to smooth the waters. But long-term damage was done. That’s just one example. There are others.

“If a mental health issue is defined as someone being unable to cope with a noxious workplace then maybe I’m wrong.

“But in my judgement the probability is that any mental health issues lie with those that create such a workplace, not those who find it hard to be a part of it.”

Dane called for Supercars to step in and ensure Kostecki finds a drive for 2024.

He wrote: “And so, the bottom line is that it falls to Supercars to be very proactive in resolving the situation that the category finds itself in right now. That entails leadership of the highest level.

“Brodie should be on the grid as soon as possible. If that means a change of team, then make that happen. It’s happened in other categories over the years at short notice.

“There are tools at Supercars’ disposal that they can use. Have the guts to use them if necessary and ensure that the best interests of the sport as a whole are upheld.”

He added: “A team that loses its biggest sponsors overnight is a team in disarray. Let’s not deny it. Nobody planned that to happen. So clearly something is deeply wrong.”

Originally published as Legendary ex-Supercars team owner claims ‘toxic workplace’ behind champ’s ugly split