DJRTP fully focussed on maintaining pace advantage

Tom Howard

Saturday 3rd June, 2017 - 4:00am


DJR Team Penske have proved the team to beat so far in 2017

Supercars pacesetters DJR Team Penske can ill afford to relax during the break before the CrownBet Darwin Triple Crown, according managing director Ryan Story.

The Queensland operation has proved the team to beat this season after scoring five championship race wins from the 10 races to date.

The successes of drivers Fabian Coulthard and Scott McLaughlin has seen the Shell-backed Fords lead both the drivers’ standings, with the former, and the teams’ championship.

Despite its sudden rise to prominence, Story says his squad has maintained its focus on pushing forward rather than reflect on its achievements.

Work to ensure its advantage over the field will continue on Tuesday when the team heads to Queensland Raceway for a test day.

The test will provide an opportunity to further evaluate developments introduced on the Falcon FGXs this year.

While DJRTP has a clear pace advantage on the pack, Story says they won’t be taking the test lightly.

“For us, we have to keep working simply because of the ferocity and the urgency of our competition,” Story told

“If you stop developing you die on the vine.

“We haven’t had time to take stock of what we have done so far.

“The test is just an opportunity to consolidate on some of the developments we have brought online and some other things we are thinking about.

“We venture in with a very full program as you would expect. We are looking forward to it, it is good opportunity to try things and investigate ways forward.

“I suppose when you bring new components online at a race weekend, the limitations with that is exploring the potential of those.

“Such is the nature of this series one successful change or development might be enough to put you to the top of the charts.

“You can never rest comfortably in this game.

“However, anyone who goes testing looking for a silver bullet is on the back foot before they even arrive trackside.”

Ironically the team will be sharing the Ipswich track with its championship rivals Triple Eight, although Story says his squad won’t be focussing on the opposition.

“We won’t focus on them (Triple Eight) at all,” he added.

“The advantage of testing is not about sharing costs it is about taking the opportunity to have extra cars on what is otherwise a dirty track.

“You always want to test with another team because it does give a bit of a benchmark in some respects when it comes to the stopwatch, but more importantly it means you have a better conditioned track than if you were out there on your own.”