Leading drivers slam V8’s baulking issue

Garth Tander at the Symmons Plains circuit yesterday

Garth Tander at the Symmons Plains circuit yesterday

Leading V8 Supercars drivers have slammed the baulking issue that is plaguing the category during practice and qualifying sessions.

At Tasmania’s Symmons Plains – a circuit notorious for the problem – Toll Holden Racing Team’s Garth Tander has told some of the drivers to be respectful and mindful of their rivals.

The problem that continues to surface is when drivers slow down to put a comfortable gap between themselves and the car ahead to get clear air for a clean lap.

The start of each session is considered the time where the baulking problem is most prevalent.

Former V8 champion Tander said that his rivals need to respect each other’s space.

“This is probably one of the worst circuits for it – You come down the back straight and come across guys who are going 3kmh,” Tander said.

“I’ve been at both ends of the spectrum. Last year we were the last team in pit lane, so we were the ones looking in the mirror waiting for the Vodafone cars to come, and this year we’re at the front, so yeah, it’s an issue.

“I think it’s an issue in the middle of the field. There seems to be some fun and games going on there. There needs to be more respect for each other. It seems to be OK at the front, we give each other plenty of room, but there seems to be a lot of shenanigans in the middle of the field.

“We certainly came across that with guys playing games. That just slows the whole field down, and the guys at the back are the ones who get blamed. A bit of professional respect would go along way.”

Ford Performance Racing’s Steve Richards, second fastest in yesterday’s practice session at Symmons Plains, is not sure how the issue can be corrected.

“It’s not a problem just in the last two race meetings, it’s been a problem over the last two years,” he said.

“I don’t know what the answer is. You’ve just got to gauge the gap and your pace as best as you can. There are guys out there who make it unbelievably hard for you to get back to pit lane – there’s guys out there who’ll drive you off the road.

“I don’t know how you can stop it though.”

Craig Lowndes was fastest in practice at Symmons Plains yesterday ahead of Richards and Tander. CLICK HERE for full practice results and report.

See below for a video from Symmons Plains in 2008 where Jamie Whincup almost collided with Jack Perkins.

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