You know a track is going to be hard when the drivers start putting up the “it’s a huge challenge” talk.
Like when we spoke to Shane “SVG” van Gisbergen about Perth this week and he said it’s one of the hardest tracks… Coming from Shane – we think we’ll take his word for it.
Despite being one of the shortest tracks on the Supercars calendar, the Barbagallo circuit definitely puts the drivers to the test.
It likely brings the hardest 2.42km of racing for both engineer and driver alike as they overcome a track that is “low grip” but “super hard” on the tyres.
“As a driver, you struggle to make the tyres last – that’s the biggest challenge in Perth,” said SVG.
“It’s so slippery, you don’t have much feeling of what the car is doing so you really need the setup done perfectly.
“It’s good in qualifying for the one lap only, but then in the race you want the opposite because you need to look after the tyres the whole race. It’s definitely tough from an engineering and driving point of view.”
And if you’re one of those people who can’t stand sand, you’re not going to like Barbagallo. With sandpits lining the course combined with passing winds, you’re bound to find sand in your ears a week post-race.
As J-Dub puts it, “it’s a nightmare. The sand, there is so much sand, especially if you make a mistake.”
Aside from that, the sunshine and the fans in Perth are always a hit with our drivers, even the travel across the country doesn’t cause any issues – until the way home.
“I like Perth and the people. I find the travel no issue when going over there with the sun but the killer for me is the way home. I avoid the red eye flight like a plague,” said J-Dub.
So, what can we expect from the new Commodore at Perth? Considering that we’ve said it’s going to endure a real test in each of the past four rounds… Can it really be tested anymore?
“This is a really tough call to make, the car has been good at most circuits this season, but Perth is a very different beast,” said J-Dub.
“The track is very challenging to get right which gives you great reward if you get there.”
Says the man with the most poles in championship history at Barbagallo with eight to his name.
“We’ve just come off a tough round down at Phillip Island, so the plan is to regroup and get back on track,” continued J-Dub.
“We won’t be changing our usual strategy though, go hard or go home.”
Fair call J-Dub. We’re all in, let’s do this.