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Behind the Scenes: Perth 2019

SuperNight – what a spectacular race weekend!  If only we had the chance to do it again – we are big fans and no doubt you guys are too.  Although we didn’t really get to see the overall big picture of the night racing, we were on the ground helping make it happen.

So here we are sharing the weekend from our perspective, but in all honesty the SuperNight racing from any angle just makes Perth’s behind the scenes more Instagram picture perfect.

 

Knighting:

All hail Car #88.

 

Missing:

PIRTEK Perth SuperNight Event 5 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Perth, Western Australia. Australia. 2nd-4th May 2019.

Did you put in the steering wheel mate?

 

Driver to Engineer:

Can you hear me now?

 

Snacks:

When you’ve been busted stuffing your face before getting caught.

 

Team boundaries:

PIRTEK Perth SuperNight Event 5 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Perth, Western Australia. Australia. 2nd-4th May 2019.

The line in the sand.

 

Pit Tours:

PIRTEK Perth SuperNight Event 5 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Perth, Western Australia. Australia. 2nd-4th May 2019.

and… this right here is the window of the car.

 

Eyes forward:

PIRTEK Perth SuperNight Event 5 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Perth, Western Australia. Australia. 2nd-4th May 2019.

Caught napping, standing up!

 

How many:

PIRTEK Perth SuperNight Event 5 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Perth, Western Australia. Australia. 4th May 2019.

Four.  Definitely need this 4th wheel mate.

 

Mechanic hands: 

PIRTEK Perth SuperNight Event 5 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Perth, Western Australia. Australia. 2nd-4th May 2019.

Spirit fingers.

 

Organised Chaos:

PIRTEK Perth SuperNight Event 5 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Perth, Western Australia. Australia. 4th May 2019.

Where on the grid is JDub?

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Live Diary: Perth 2019

JAMIE WHINCUP – Car #88

 Practice 3Second (Fastest Time: 00:53.4650)

Qualifying – Second (Fastest Time: 00:53.3070)

Race 2 – Second

ChampionshipSixth (937 points)

“Obviously we are very happy with the end results.  I feel like we have won the most improved award as we were very ordinary three weeks ago.  The engineers have done a fantastic job to turn things around and give us competitive pace this weekend, but the next step isn’t a click on the dampers or click a roll bar, it’s a lot more involved.  The team next door has absolutely raised the game and they’re in another league at the moment.  I feel that for the good of the sport it’s up to us to do the same thing.  It’s fantastic to beat everyone else but if we are serious, we need to make some big changes to beat Car 17 at a consistent level.  We feel good about maximising this weekend with the tools we had and when we get back, we will sit down as a team and work out how we can get more tools in the toolbox.”

 

SHANE VAN GISBERGEN – Car #97

Practice 3Fourth (Fastest Time: 00:53.4650)

Qualifying – Seventh (Fastest Time: 00:53.4514)

Race 2 – Fifth

ChampionshipThird (1,024 points)

“During today’s qualifying we didn’t really get the most out of it like we should have.  We were a tenth away from second but that small difference in time makes a big difference in the positions and obviously still hurts.  The race was good, but I couldn’t quite get enough pace in the middle stint which hurt us in the end.  We have now taken a different approach in set up so it will no doubt be interesting at Winton.  It is a different track; twisty and bumpy in comparison to smooth and flowing here in Perth.  The different set up philosophy will it work there?  I’m not too sure but after this weekend it looks like we have taken the step forward that we have needed to be more competitive.”

 

2100:  Long, long day and as the crew gets cracking on packing up the garage so we can head on out of here, it’s time to catch the drivers (who surprisingly have dove straight into helping out with pack up and are on their hands and knees getting the floor stickers off.)

 

 

2020:  Last time we hit the podium was in Tasmania and that seems like donkey’s years ago.

2000:  83 laps seems to be taking forever – anyone else curious to see if there will be any time remaining for SVG do another take over?

 

 

1915: Get a good close look.  That’s right seems like we may have finally got those pit stops right.

 


1845:  Green light and JDub had a cracker start – you want to talk about getting ahead of the game that was next level.

1800:  We’ve been told there will be quite a spectacle put on tonight.  Shame we won’t be able to see the big picture!

1600:  Heading straight into data review and debrief to set up a game plan.

1540:  How he does it we don’t know?  Well maybe the engineers do but if anyone can do it we guess it’s JDub.

JDub – P2 — 00:53.3070

SVG – P7 — 00:53.4514

1530:  Who knew JDub was a fan of Eminem … if you had one shot – one opportunity and you know the rest.

1515: There’snot enough time for commentary and updates with this qualifying format.

 

 

 

1505:  By now we are sure you know how it goes – aim is top ten.

 

1430:  Qualifying is right around the corner but we are sitting Q1 out thanks to this morning’s practice run.

1345:  Seems like we are constantly leaving it to last minute.  Got no nails left and still have qualifying and the race left.

JDub – P2 –00:53.4650

SVG – P4 — 00:53.6262

 

1340:  ATTENTION! ATTENTION! … The bulls have found their wings.

 

1325:  In the mean time we are going to show you some scenes from the garage and there is a lot of rolling around happening.

 

 

1320:  Oh yep not exactly sure what is going on at the moment – we are no doubt scratching our heads, fingers, toes and eyes all crossed – surely the engineers have it all taken care of, I am they do know what they doing right?

1300:  Hear we go – the mayhem is about to begin!

1100:  It’s a good thing we are starting late today and the drivers have had their beauty sleep – way to much driving crammed into this afternoon and late evening it should be illegal!

1000:  How spectacular was yesterday’s night race – we are ready to do it all again tonight except bigger, better and faster!

 

Saturday 4 May

 

JAMIE WHINCUP – Car #88

Practice 218th (Fastest Time: 00:53.8985)

Qualifying – Third (Fastest Time: 00:53.1223)

Race 1 – Fourth

 “We ended up with a decent result tonight in comparison to the last few races.  At the start of the race, the car in front had a bad start so we were able to capitalise and move up to P2.  At the end of day however it’s all about pace.  Pace wins races and gets podiums.  We weren’t quick enough today and unfortunately got passed by car 17 in the pits and then Mostert came through.  Towards the end I had a cracker battle with SVG which hopefully everyone enjoyed.  It’s always cool racing under the lights, makes it more of a spectacle and to see so many people coming out for a night race is great.  Fingers crossed we make the car even better for tomorrow.”

 

 

 

SHANE VAN GISBERGEN – Car #97

Practice 210th (Fastest Time: 00:53.7237)

Qualifying – Sixth (Fastest Time: 00:53.2827)

Race 1 – Fifth

 “The first half of the race was not too exciting and then we tried to get a longer stop to see if we could make up the lost time somewhere in the end.  The start of the race wasn’t all that great as we lost a couple of positions there.  I really need to sort out my starts for tomorrow as previously they have been quick and good but in the last couple of rounds something has changed so it needs to improve and be better.  The atmosphere isn’t too bad but it’s dark out there on the track.  We didn’t really change the set up too much from this morning which is good as we had a much better result at the end of the day.  We are about where we thought we would be but obviously still need to be better to get to the top of the podium”

 

2015:  Quick gathering of words before dinner and debrief.

 

1940:  JDub holds off SVG.

JDub – P4 — 00:54.0289

SVG – P5 — 00:54.1159

 

1925:  Okay now there is something wrong with this picture – JDub and SVG nose to tail with JDub not budging.  After watching SVG’s smooth moves who knows how this is all going to pan out!

1920:  Yep here’s proof.

 

 

1915:  A lot going on from both drivers as they keep pushing the driver in front to get ahead.

 

 

1845:  Racing under the lights – it’s all fire, smoke and sparkles in Perth!

1815:  30 minute signal can only mean one thing – we are 30 minutes away from race time!

1730:  Down time for the drivers – shhhhhhhh do not disturb.

 

 

1615: When you’re done with Q3 and still standing – well done JDub and SVG, that was nail biting! Nice top spots for lining up on the grid for race 1 tonight.

JDub – P3 — 00:53.1223
SVG – P6 — 00:53.2827

 

 

 

1555: Anyone else suffering from anxiety with this three part qualifying? Fingers can’t keep up with typing.

 

 

1555: While JDub takes a 5 second breather, SVG starts to fly around the track. We are looking for top 10 finish.

1535: JDub made the cut.

 

1525: Q1 ready.

1515: We are crossing our fingers for qualifying – need to make it through three sessions to be into the top 10 positions of the grid.

1330:

JDub – P18 — 00:53.8985

SVG – P10 — 00:53.7237

1200: Still not much happening. Did a quick run around for a signing session with our fans and it’s already lunch time. Might need to stuff our faces after practice though.

0900: Night racing got us all over the shop – not used to getting a sleep in and late starts during race weekends.

 

Friday 3 May

 

JAMIE WHINCUP – Car #88

Practice 1 – 1st (Fastest Time: 00:53.4430)

“At the moment it’s early days; it’s only Thursday and as always is the case with practice you don’t know who is running what tyres or anything, but the reality is that in comparison to Phillip Island no matter what tyre we had on, at what stage of the session we struggled to be competitive. With this result we seemed to be competitive early on, so very happy to finish the session in P1. It was a super close session and obviously doesn’t guarantee anything for the weekend. It’s much nicer to roll out of the truck and have an opportunity of a good result this weekend as opposed to the last couple of rounds. The session was tougher than expected as we had a few mechanical issues and some other things that were a little uncharacteristic, but we will try to iron all that out for tomorrow. There is still a lot of work to be done and no doubt after today everyone will step it up.”

 

SHANE VAN GISBERGEN – Car #97

Practice 111th (Fastest Time: 00:53.8015)

It was alright out there on the track. The track is lit well so it’s a lot brighter in comparison to last year when we raced in Sydney, but even so it’s still dark out there when you are driving around. Everything seems to be going by much faster when you’re out there probably due to the grip level on the tyres due to the resurfacing and obviously because it’s dark. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the best run in the practice session, so we have a lot to figure out heading into tomorrow’s qualifying and race.”

 

1945: Catching up with drivers and we all know that tomorrow is another day to try out a few more things.

1915: Somehow JDub has done it and found the rhythm that’s needed. Don’t bet on it yet only was practice but hopefully practice makes perfect.

 

 

1840: Rolling out for first practice. Lights, Camera and DRIVE!!!

 

 

1825: Gearing up for practice and you hear – DUDE where’s my car?

1715: Oh yes but not without doing a merchandise visit for our fans. The sun is still out shining bright. Perth, how are you so warm and yet it’s so cold overnight?

1600: Still thumb twiddling waiting to get our chance out on track. If you think you’re eager to see the bulls out there can you imagine the drivers?!?

1300: Don’t worry we haven’t forgotten about you all. Drivers have had lunch and are now in a blackout period after a jam packed day of sponsorship appearances yesterday.

1030: Never start with the weekend without a track walk. New surface, racing in the dark – anyone else wonder what the drivers thought of it all? No doubt we will see what they’re all up tonight after a team briefing session to talk it all over.

0900: Good morning Perth and how great it is to have a later start to the day. With that being said there will be some late nights but we’re sure the racing will make up for it all!

 

Thursday 2 May

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Behind The Scenes: Perth 2018

We travelled across the country in the search for some more silverware… We might not have claimed the silverware but we did pocket some cash and learn some new dance moves.

 

“Are you sure you did all of the laps? I lost track, let’s count them.”

 

Rolling up to NAB like…

 

Chickety-check yo self. The white suit does not exactly scream Ice Cube…

 

The awkward moment when you realise the can’s not even open.

 

Compensating?

 

The dance routines for J-Van and the Pit Crew are getting ever more elaborate.

 

No one had the heart to tell Brady that he was 18 laps out. And SVG was very confused.

 

Thumbs up if you’re going to get pole position and lose it within two seconds of the start.

 

Because he had to do something cool…

 

Actually listening to Guns N Roses…

 

Couples who qualify together stay together. #couplegoals

 

 

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A topsy-turvy weekend in Perth

A topsy-turvy weekend in the west brought some joy for the Red Bull duo, but it was Craig Lowndes who best flew the Triple Eight flag with a stunning Sunday drive.

By Matthew Clayton for redbull.com

 

Qualifying for the Supercars round at Barbagallo Raceway in Perth is critical, right? The shortest lap of the year, traffic everywhere, sand, pitfalls and trap doors waiting to catch you out at every turn – the way to win a race is surely start from P1 and control it from the front. Which was what happened on Saturday in WA, Scott McLaughlin (Shell V-Power Racing) taking his third victory on the bounce after starting from first and still being there 50 laps later.

Qualifying for the Supercars round at Barbagallo Raceway is a waste of time, right? At least it seemed that way 24 hours later on Sunday, when Shane van Gisbergen and Jamie Whincup gave the Red Bull Holden Racing Team a front-row lockout for Race 12 of the season … and came home fifth and sixth respectively as the race was won by – you guessed it – McLaughlin from – you’ll never guess this – 19th on the grid.

That’s four wins in a row for DJRTP’s flying Kiwi, and he took a sizeable 158-point lead in the championship over Van Gisbergen on a weekend that didn’t make a lot of sense, but (at least for SVG) ended up with some silverware and a degree of damage limitation. Van Gisbergen qualified just 12th on Saturday but fought his way through to the final spot on the podium by nabbing Tim Slade’s Freightliner Racing Holden on the last lap.

READ MORE: Sunday’s topsy-turvy race

Sunday looked set to be even better when SVG took his first pole position in five races, but things went pear-shaped as soon as the lights went out, a tardy start seeing him bog the car off the line and get swamped into the first corner. It was a critical error with severe consequences – when a safety car was called to extract James Golding’s Wilson Security Racing GRM Commodore from the first-corner sand trap on lap four, SVG had to stack behind teammate Whincup in the pits – and came out 18th, his chances of a win shot to bits.

SVG would ride a four-stop strategy to finish strongly and advance to fifth, and while he stayed second in the title chase, it was a frustrating weekend that could have produced much more at a circuit he admitted “isn’t my favourite track”.

“It’s alright, it’s my worst track and I finished with a third and a fifth so that’s good,” he said, looking for the silver lining rather than at the clouds that threatened (but never delivered) rain on Sunday.

“I had a rubbish start in the race, and then we had to stack in the pit stop which was no good. We had a heap of fuel on board while we were out the back and we were just stuck in traffic, so we decided to be aggressive, we had the tyres.

“The last stop was good, we had better tyres than the others and we were able to come through but again, the stacking killed us.”

One of SVG’s late-race victims on Sunday was Whincup, who had a forgettable weekend in the west that saw him stay fifth overall in the standings, but fall to 268 points behind last year’s title rival McLaughlin.

Whincup hadn’t qualified lower than fifth in the first 10 races of the year, which made Saturday’s starting position of 14th quite a shock. He was one of the first to pit in the race and edged his way up the order, but ran out of tyre life late, and a slow final pit stop on lap 39 didn’t help. He crossed the line sixth, but then came the realisation that he was to cop a five-second time penalty for contact with Chaz Mostert (Supercheap Auto Racing) on lap 33 when Mostert had slowed to make the pit-lane entry on the inside of the final corner, a sanction that saw him fall to 11th.

Sunday looked like it would be much better when J-Dub capitalised on SVG’s sluggish getaway to lead into the first corner, but that track position was relinquished with the early stop under the safety car, and from then on in it was a real struggle. In the end, he finished in his teammate’s wheeltracks in sixth, but was 18 seconds behind McLaughlin after an afternoon he was struggling to get his head around afterwards.

READ: Barbagallo – a very different beast

“(We) had absolutely nowhere near the pace needed today, I was just hanging on to the thing,” he admitted.

“It had no tyre life and we just had to keep creeping back through the field. To win these races you have got to be quick, and we were far from that today.”

Remember what we said about qualifying (the ‘it didn’t seem to matter” bit)? Craig Lowndes would surely concur after the third member of our Triple Eight trio put the full stop on a weekend at one of his strongest circuits with a barely believable third on Sunday from 25th (no mis-print) on the grid.

Lowndes, who’d finished fifth on Saturday after starting eighth, was on the back row of the grid on Sunday when the lights went out, and his charge to his third podium of 2018 was a slow burn; he worked his way into the top 10 as the pit stops played out on lap 23, made his final stop with 23 laps left, and was both relentless and inch-perfect from there as he picked off his rivals one by one, nailing James Courtney (Mobil 1 Boost Mobile Racing) on the second-last lap to score a very unlikely podium.

“The car was really good, for me to be able to do the long stints in the middle was really important to close the gap to the guys in front,” he said.

Next up for Lowndesy, not to mention J-Dub and SVG, is Winton for races 13 and 14 of the championship (May 18-20). It’s tight, twisty, a bit one-line and somewhere where qualifying can be … um, we’re not going there.