SVG, Winterbottom at odds over qualifying clash

Mark Winterbottom (left) and Shane van Gisbergen

Mark Winterbottom labelled Shane van Gisbergen ‘a fool’ following a clash in qualifying that triggered a call for the former to be excluded from the session at Winton.

The pair clashed on the out lap at Turn 5 that resulted in punctures for van Gisbergen (right rear) and Winterbottom (left rear).

Triple Eight team manager Mark Dutton felt Winterbottom caused the incident prompting a call for the Ford driver to be excluded.

The collision was seen differently by Winterbottom who suggested van Gisbergen has a history of causing incidents in qualifying.

“He’s a bit of a fool really,” said Winterbottom, who suffered a bent steering on his way to 18th on the grid.

“Every out lap…if he wants to go slow he can go slow, but every time you try and go past them they try and run you off the road and block you.

“I went around him and then he swerved into me and hit the front wheel.

“(He) does it all the time, it’s frustrating, I’ve got bent steering and now the car’s slow.

“If he wants to go slow, stay on-line, you can’t keep weaving into you.

“We’re all sick of it; it’s not just me, it’s a few of us.

“We’ll deal with it, we’ll sort it out I’m sure. He needs to have a look at himself really. Didn’t cost him, it cost me so why is he upset?”

Van Gisbergen felt he wasn’t at fault for the clash claiming Winterbottom ran into the back of his Commodore.

“I need to see the replay to know, but from my seat what I was doing was just holding the line, riding the brakes, warming the brakes,” said van Gisbergen.

“I think Jack (Le Brocq) went around the outside, plenty of room, then next thing he’s just run up the back of me.

“Whether it’s my fault, I’m not sure, 97 percent sure it was not my fault, I was just doing what I was doing.

“I was on warm up tyres, he was on soft I think, I don’t know, I need to see video, I definitely was holding a line and constant speed.”

Stewards will investigate the matter to see if any sanctions are required.

Scott McLaughlin claimed pole position for Race 14, which is due to start at 1345 local time/AEST.

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