HE might have stepped away from a full-time seat more than eight years ago, but Steve Richards laughs that he "never retired from Supercars".
Not when he still has the chance to race at Mount Panorama in the Bathurst 1000.
And not when he is still winning the race he loves as a co-driver.
Of Richards' five wins in the Great Race, three have been in a co-driver role and come this Sunday when he partners Mark Winterbottom in the iconic enduro, it will mark his 27th start.
"I probably thought, when I was younger, I thought I'd come back every year and have a drive but then, as you get older, the reality sets in that it's not going to be forever, you're not going to be able to come back," Richards said.
"So for me, this place, coming back here is special.
"It's always great to get back here, the moment you roll in and see Mount Panorama in the back ground."
While there is no doubting Richards' passion for the race, he is not alone in his views on both the 161-lap challenge and the 6.213 kilometre circuit. He says that is part of what makes Bathurst the event it is.
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"It's a special place for the drivers, our whole industry has been built around this one race, and no doubt the fans love it as well," he said.
"It's just the place, the place for what it has brought to the fans and the teams and the drivers over the years, over 70 years, is just amazing.
"The legacy of the place is undoubted, it lives on. From young kids in go-karts to old blokes like me, to guys like my dad who have retired, it has been a special place that has made our life."
Craig Lowndes, the man who Richards won the 1000 alongside in record time last year, holds the Mount in just as high esteem. The Bathurst public love him as well, having awarded him honourary citizenship last year.
"It really is an amazing track, we all talk about how challenging it is, a bit over six kilometres of road or bitumen that we've got to try and conquer," Lowndes said.
"It's 1000 kilometres, 161 laps, you don't know what the conditions of the race are going to be, it could start sunny and end wet or vice-versa, there's all those elements you've got to contend with as the day goes on."