NZ teams assist in Coulthard Falcon repair 

Tom Howard

Saturday 4th November, 2017 - 8:11pm

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Fabian Coulthard’s damaged Ford Falcon

Shell V-Power Racing remains confident it can repair Fabian Coulthard’s damaged Falcon in time for Sunday’s race after receiving spares from local New Zealand V8 teams.

The team is expected to work into the small hours of Sunday morning to fix the #12 Ford following a roll in Saturday’s Race 23 which damaged Coulthard’s championship hopes at the ITM Auckland Super Sprint.

Coulthard ended up on his roof on the exit of Turn 10 following contact with Erebus Motorsport’s David Reynolds after a chain of events was triggered by Chaz Mostert at Turn 8.

Following a thorough assessment, the car has escaped the incident better than first feared having avoided structural damage.

However, with this weekend’s event a flyaway and spares limited, the squad has required the help of motorsport fraternity to assist in the repair of the car.

A roof panel, known as the turret, has been sourced from former Supercars driver and Driving Standards Observer Jason Bargwanna from a Toyota Camry New Zealand Supertourer, which has been converted from a Ford Falcon FG.

“Fortunately it is predominately superficial so it is rear rail extensions (that need to be repaired), damage on the turret, and some of the side panels (which need fixing) after it has had the landing,” said Shell V-Power Racing managing director Ryan Story.

“It doesn’t appear to be any significant damage to the car or any structural damage. It is just a matter of cutting away all of the bent bits and reapplying.

“It will be in the wee small hours of the morning by the time it is all said done.

“We’ve had help from a couple of people, including Jason Bargwanna in sourcing a turret.

“The New Zealand V8 series ran the FG panels and the roof of the car is the same. We’ve sourced a panel from one of those cars to get us out of trouble.

“Jason is a guy who’s obviously spent a lot of time out here successfully and knows the people and had a connection to help us out.

“We’ve had quite a few people looking around, from local Ford dealers to Supercars officials, it’s just the nature of the motor racing fraternity.”

While work is being carried out on Coulthard’s Falcon, the team will assess the engine on Scott McLaughlin’s #17 chassis after smoke emerged from the car towards the end of the race.

The issue didn’t prove costly as the Kiwi managed to come home in third behind race winner Shane van Gisbergen and Mark Winterbottom.

“The car was running a bit warm so we saw a bit of surge there, which is non-typical, but we’ll look at it and check how much (oil) is left and do the precautionary checks,” added Story.

“It was not a cause for alarm, but certainly throughout the race it was running a bit warm. The (Safety Car) wasn’t ideal for that, either.

“It was probably a bit of an own-goal, because we anticipated a bit more rain too, but it’s par for the course.”

VIDEO: DJR Team Penske repair Coulthard’s Falcon

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