Dick Johnson Racing team manager Malcolm Swetnam has labelled the Queensland team’s disastrous weekend at Phillip Island as unacceptable.
The Jim Beam backed Falcons, driven by James Moffat/Matt Halliday and Steven Johnson/David Besnard, proved uncompetitive all weekend – finishing this afternoon’s L&H 500 25th and 26th respectively.
CLICK HERE for Speedcafe.com’s race report and results
Having started the race from 26th, even an alternative strategy failed to work for the team’s flagship #17 entry.
Johnson elected not to pit under the geese-induced Lap 64 Safety Car, but soon found himself spun to the back of the field on the restart (after contact with Mark Winterbottom) – with the following pitstop dropping the DJR Falcon a lap behind the race leaders.
“It was a bad weekend, basically,” Swetnam told Speedcafe.com after the race.
“We had reasonable pace by the end of the weekend, but it was all too late really. Everyone has an off day. We had an off day.”
The team’s poor performance was particularly surprising considering that both Moffat and Johnson finished inside the top 10 at the previous event in Queensland.
“I wouldn’t say we came here complacent in any way at all,” said Swetnam of the turnaround.
“Last year, we ran well with one car here. the track here has never been terribly kind, but our performance here was unacceptable.”
Swetnam says that he remains confident that team, which took James Courtney to last year’s V8 Supercars Championship title, will bounce back next month at Bathurst.
“I firmly believe that this is a blip,” said Swetnam.
“We haven’t forgotten how to do it. The drivers haven’t forgotten how to drive and the mechanics haven’t forgotten how to mechanic.
“We’ll review our weekend and come out at Bathurst in good form. We need to refocus and keep pushing forward.”