POLL: Who is favourite for the 2018 Supercars title?
Five rounds into the 2018 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Speedcafe.com wants to know who you think will win this year’s title.
There are now 12 races in the history books, with Holden having won seven and Ford – or more specifically, Scott McLaughlin – having won the other five.
Currently topping the championship standings is McLaughlin, who has taken out the last four races to bank a maximum of 600 points in that time.
The Shell V-Power Racing driver holds a 158 point advantage over Shane van Gisbergen in second, more than a race win at a standard weekend.
“We’ve got to capitalise on the days that we have a good car and we have and our bad days we’ve got to try and minimise them,” McLaughlin responded when asked about his points lead on Saturday in Perth.
“That’s just my focus all year. I’ll keep pressing on until the end and we’ll see what happens after that.”
Holden drivers dominated the opening stanza of the season, with van Gisbergen taking two poles and two wins on the opening weekend in Adelaide.
Such was the new ZB Commodore’s early performance that Ford won just a single race in the first eight of the 2018 season, courtesy of McLaughlin in Albert Park.
Sitting third in the championship is David Reynolds, who is already a race winner this year, and at Barbagallo showed he’s an ever more serious contender in 2018 with Erebus Motorsport.
He was the man to beat in Symmons Plains, and has demonstrated that the ZB Commodore and 2016-spec tyre plays to his strengths.
Lowndes currently sits fourth in the standings, one place higher than his seven-time championship winning team-mate Jamie Whincup.
The Red Bull Holden Racing Team has had an unusually inconsistent season, with out of character technical faults for van Gisbergen, while Whincup hasn’t recorded a top five since finishing third in Race 8 of the year in Tasmania.
There’s plenty of pace there, though, as he finished on the podium in six consecutive races up to that point, which saw him claw back the ground lost with a retirement in Adelaide.
“No one is really looking at the championship, we all want to be in contention by a couple hundred points,” he said after winning on Saturday in Tasmania.
Further down the standings, Chaz Mostert has said he refuses to concede defeat in the title fight, though admits the task ahead of him is now significant.
“We’ve got a lot of work to do, I’m not putting the white flag up but this championship this year is going to be pretty hard this far into it and the car we’ve got at the moment,” Mostert said.
“I’ve got Adam De Borre in my corner, he’s very good, he thinks outside the box when it’s not going well, so I’ve got the best guy in my corner to pull out of this.
“Watch this space, we’ll see how we come at the next couple of events.”
Eighth in the standings, 402 points away from McLaughlin, the Supercheap Auto Falcon driver is yet to stand on the podium in 2018.
The two Walkinshaw Andretti United drivers are also still in the mix, with Scott Pye on 874 points, just 10 ahead of James Courtney.
Both have already claimed podiums, and Pye a first career win in Albert Park, and look to have bounced back from a difficult 2017 to once again be genuine contenders at the front of the field.
Now, with 12 races completed and 19 remaining, Speedcafe.com wants to know who you think will be crowned champion in 2018.
Can Scott McLaughlin maintain his advantage and take the title by the time the championship reaches Newcastle or will someone else mount a mid-season charge and take control of things in his place?
Who will be crowned Supercars champion in 2018?
Have your say by casting your vote in this week’s Pirtek Poll.