The once famously close Stefanovic brothers were last week barely speaking after it emerged they are both desperately trying to resurrect their careers – by jockeying for the same job.
Both Peter, 37, and Karl, 44, are understood to be working the phones as they try to muster support to secure Nine's coveted US bureau chief role.
"The boys used to speak every day and Pete used to rely on Karl for advice, but not any more," claimed one close family friend.
The new rivalry broke out last week after Nine's veteran US bureau chief Robert Penfold announced he was stepping down from his role, reigniting tensions between the pair.
Karl was shocked when he learned that Peter has been in secret talks with long-time mentor and close friend Robert to secure the role that could salvage his career
"Karl has waited for years for Rob to step down and he never, ever expected Pete to be one of the frontrunners for the job – there's definitely a showdown coming," says one Nine insider.
It's been a shocking year for the Stefanovics after the "bloodbath" at Today, which saw both brothers lose their jobs on the show, and Peter's wife Sylvia Jeffreys take a reporting role on A Current Affair.
"Pete learned his lesson after Ubergate and is genuinely remorseful about the fallout from bitching about his colleagues, which almost cost him everything," says our source.
"It taught him that he can't afford to live in Karl's shadow, and after months in the wilderness, he's ready to take on Karl and back himself – and my money is on Pete."
WATCH: The awkward moment a Today show guest brings up Ubergate with Karl Stefanovic. Post continues after video...
According to one insider at Nine, Karl had no clue that younger brother Peter has been positioning himself to fill Robert's shoes for months.
"Karl sees the job as a ticket out of here – a reinvention role where he can escape all the media scrutiny with new wife Jasmine [Yarbrough] and live the American dream," says our source.
"But Pete wants it for the right reasons. He's an experienced foreign correspondent, and he sees it as a chance to prove himself and help Sylvia break into the US market.
"Rob has been a mentor and dear friend to both Sylvia and Pete and attended their wedding two years ago, but did not attend Karl and Jasmine's lavish Mexico wedding."
When news broke last week that Robert, 68, was stepping down, Karl was "straight on the blower" to his boss at Nine, Darren Wick, claims another staffer.
What Karl may not have known is that his boss had already posted an advertisement calling for applications from both Nine staff and reporters on rival networks.
"Pete may have left the building, but he's got a very good chance, having previously spent three years working the bureau under Rob, who rates him highly," says the source.
"Karl, however, sees himself as the best broadcast journalist in Australia, if not the world, and he is going to fight for this job."
A move to the US, where Jasmine, 35, once modelled, may also help grow her fledgling fashion business Mara & Mine.
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Australian Women's WeeklyJan 23, 2020