V8 Supercars drivers call for SMP circuit tweak

Saturday 22nd August, 2015 - 6:30pm

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Whincup leads Coulthard through Turn 5 in Race 22

Whincup leads Coulthard through Turn 5 in Race 22

Race 22 winner Jamie Whincup has led the call from V8 Supercars drivers for a permanent solution to the track limits issue at Turn 5 of the Sydney Motorsport Park circuit.

Whincup, Shane van Gisbergen and Nick Percat all received bad sportsmanship flags in the closing stages of the 16 lap encounter for repeatedly triggering the sensor placed on the exit of the corner.

Fearing a drive-through penalty for a further infringement, the Red Bull driver was forced to temper his approach through the left-hander as he fought to fend off Fabian Coulthard for the win.

The large concrete kerb and extra tarmac was placed on the outside of the corner three years ago, doubling as a pit exit for the 1.8km south circuit.

“I’ll say it as it is, when you don’t build the track properly, you’ve got to put these cuts (timing loops) in the road to police the circuit,” Whincup told Speedcafe.com.

“It’d be good if you didn’t have to do that. Hopefully next year we can put a bit of synthetic grass or a saw-toothed kerb or something like that in.

“They’ve spent a couple of million bucks here, so hopefully we can just spend 10 grand or so just to put a proper kerb in on the outside and that’ll fix the problem.”

Coulthard agreed that the way the corner has been designed was always destined to create issues.

“The limiting factor is the road you have on the outside and if there’s concrete there we’ll use it,” he said.

“If there was grass there or something that prevents you from going there then you can’t use it.

“You draw a line in the sand, or the edge of the track. If there’s grass you can’t go out there.”

Third placed finisher Chaz Mostert suggests that the simplest solution is to simply allow drivers to use all the space available.

“It looks cool when the cars are bouncing in that gutter there,” he said.

“We used it all on the test day (February’s pre-season test) and there were no issues.

“It’s pretty hard on tyres around here so you’re kind of trying to find every millimetre of the track and if there’s an extra couple of metres I’m sure the fans would like it.”

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