TeamVodafone accepts Whincup’s non-result
Roland Dane and TeamVodafone have accepted Jamie Whincup’s non-classification result at Sydney today and admit that it will be hard to win the V8 title from here.
Whincup was classified as a ‘DNF’ after failing to complete the last lap in the maximum required time after a crash on the 60th lap of a dramatic street race.
Whincup, along with championship rivals James Courtney, Mark Winterbottom and eight other cars were involved in the accident after a brief but heavy rain shower blew over the track.
The reigning V8 champ made it back to pitlane, but due to the control line situated at the start of pit lane, he would have needed to complete an out-lap and another lap to be classed as a finisher.
Team principal Dane accepts the rules, but pointed his finger at title rivals Dick Johnson Racing, who he claims broke the law in the mad rush to get the wrecked cars back onto the track.
“Jamie didn’t complete the last lap … he did, but not in the time that he had to,” he told Speedcafe.com.au.
“Because the control line is at the start of pit lane, rather than the end of it, it didn’t work for us.
“Unfortunately, the guys in race control had their eyes closed when Courtney’s car was being pushed backwards in pit lane, their crew not in the right attire etc during a refueling race.
“I don’t think that was particularly fair at all. We try and make sure that we stick to the rules in terms of getting the car out.
“Anyway, it is what it is. We should have come in for wets the lap before for rain, but that’s all in hindsight.
“We won’t protest. That should be dealt with by the officials. Clearly, they probably haven’t even noticed. And it wasn’t until I pointed it out that they realised. Anyway, it’s academic. Even if you had a 30 second pit lane penatly, he’d still be in front of Jamie.”
Dane says that it will be hard for Whincup to secure a third-straight title from here, but says that anything can happen.
“It makes it hard from here, but Courtney proved today that he can crash with the best of them,” he said.
“Maybe he can do it again … you never know.”
See below for race highlights video …