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T8 welcomes push for base chassis centre of gravity rule

Tom Howard

Monday 25th March, 2019 - 6:00am

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Chaz Mostert battles Jamie Whincup at the recent Beaurepaires Melbourne 400

Triple Eight would back the introduction of a centre of gravity rule around the base Supercar chassis to ensure parity moving forward as Supercars investigates concerns surrounding the Ford Mustang.

Rival Holden and Nissan teams have called for Supercars to regulate centre of gravity given a wide held belief that the new-for-2019 Mustang has an advantage in this department, which is not currently governed by the category.

Since the Adelaide season opener Supercars has been collecting data from the Mustang, which has won all six races, leading to a two-day centre of gravity test last week involving 10 cars from all manufacturers, including Mustangs from DJR Team Penske and Tickford Racing.       

While centre of gravity disparity is a key part of the investigation, there are concerns in the paddock that the Mustang also has an aero advantage.

However, Triple Eight team manager Mark Dutton believes a centre of gravity ruling based on the bare Supercars chassis would be beneficial for the category.

“The most important thing is we are a parity series with the aero and spec chassis as such now,” Dutton told Speedcafe.com 

“Inherent in that is that you’re introducing different models at different times, there’s different manufacturing processes in that. 

“I’d welcome a push to make sure that the base car, or chassis, is considered equal because that’s the whole intention of Car of the Future, was to do that. 

“It was to make sure that you had a spec chassis so that no matter which model or manufacturer you run, you have the same opportunity to get the same results for effort in and results out.

“If there was to be centre of gravity rule, like anything, you got to make sure you do these rules right. 

“So, the only centre of gravity rule that we would need, in our opinion as a team not just mine, is you do it on the base car, not an assembled car. 

“What that means is everyone’s got more or less the same roll cage. Everyone has the same rear suspension. 

“Everyone’s got the same chassis. And then it’s only the panels that form the aero package of the car, and the doors, the bonnets, the roof etcetera. 

“So, all of those combined with the chassis. If you’re looking at doing a centre of gravity control, you control that, because that’s the base model before race teams go and say, ‘You know what? My driver doesn’t need as many fans. So therefore, my centre of gravity will be a little better because I don’t need to run all this duct work and those sort of things.’

“We don’t want to take the motorsport out of the motorsport. 

“The chassis are meant to have the parity so doing a centre of gravity on the base chassis would be a fantastic thing. We already do it on the engines so, it’s only a step forward in that regards.”

Supercars confirmed last Wednesday that it was analysing data gathered from the test and is prepared to make changes if a significant disparity is found between the Mustang, Commodore and Altima.

Speedcafe.com understands that if alterations to the Mustang are to be made, they would need to be communicated to teams early this week, in order to complete the modifications in time for the Tyrepower Tasmania SuperSprint (April 5-7).

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