Brodie Kostecki will make his Supercars return in New Zealand next week.

The 2023 champion missed the opening two events of the season due to a saga with his team, Erebus.

He was reportedly seeking an exit from the team, but will now line up on the grid in Taupo from April 19-21.

The Sporting News explains the key details.

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What happened to Brodie Kostecki? Supercars champion to return to Erebus 

Kostecki's Erebus return was confirmed in a team statement in early April.

"I’m excited to be back behind the wheel again, I needed some time away to prioritise my health," Kostecki said.

"I’m grateful for the support, privacy and time [team owner] Betty [Klimenko], [CEO] Barry [Ryan], and the team have given me."

The team's CEO was pleased to have his top driver back on board.

"On behalf of Betty and the team, we are pleased Brodie is ready to drive again," Ryan said.

"Having Brodie back to work alongside Jack as he becomes more familiar with our cars will be a positive for our entire team."

MORE: Has there been an Australian F1 world champion?

It is still unclear exactly why Kostecki stepped away from the team, with Kostecki simply stating the need to "prioritise his health". 

According to Fox Sports, there was a falling out between Kostecki and Erebus team bosses – including CEO Ryan – last year.

There was an expectation that the 26-year-old was prepared to sit out the entire 2024 Supercars season until he secured a release from the team. 

Todd Hazelwood drove in Kostecki’s place at the Bathurst 500 and Melbourne SuperSprint alongside new Erebus teammate Jack Le Brocq.

Hazelwood will now return to duties as the team's endurance co-driver.

(Getty Images)

The public nature of the saga saw key sponsors withdraw their support.

Coca-Cola Europacific Partners – who held naming and livery rights for two years – pulled out, along with Shaw and Partners and Southern Cross Truck Rentals.

According to speedcafe.com, Coca-Cola won't renew as a sponsor despite Kostecki's return.

Erebus team boss in tears over Brodie Kostecki saga

In an interview alongside team owner Betty Klimenko in Feburary, Erebus Motorsport CEO Barry Ryan broke down in tears discussing the dispute at the time.

"We respect the privacy of Brodie," Klimenko told Fox Sports.

"Because of that, we can't say anything. Really, we need to look forward and talk about Todd [Hazelwood] and Jack [le Brocq]. But as far as Brodie is concerned, we can't say a word."

Ryan then shared that the online abuse combined with the recent passing of his best friend's wife had been challenging.

"The biggest thing for me is my wife and daughter making sure I'm not going to hurt myself or do something silly," he said.

"There's been so much hate and I'm not that sort of person. I'm not a bully. I don't do anything but care for people. 

"In the whole process of this I've had one of my best mate's wife pass away. I've been in intensive care hospitals with him and trying to support him. It's just been hard."

2024-02-22T20:21:18Z dg43tfdfdgfd