DJR Team Penske confirms unchanged 2020 line-up
Shell V-Power Racing has confirmed an unchanged driver line-up of Scott McLaughlin and Fabian Coulthard for the 2020 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship.
The Ford squad has been at the centre of the silly season but in recent weeks it had hinted that it would retain both its drivers for next season.
Today’s announcement brings an end to the speculation surrounding the team’s driver line-up following suggestions that Coulthard’s position was under threat from out of contract Tickford Racing star Chaz Mostert, who now seems in the frame to move to Walkinshaw Andretti United.
There had also been talk that reigning champion McLaughlin could have been set for a future away from Supercars in the US next year.
Following team protocol, the length of the deals for its drivers remains unclear.
Confirmation of the team’s 2020 plans sees McLaughlin and Coulthard line up for a fourth consecutive season. The pair currently occupy first and second in the series standings.
“Confirming that both Scott and Fabian will remain with us in Supercars is great news, and something that we’re very proud of,” said Shell V-Power racing managing director Ryan Story.
“They have proven to be great team-mates and have represented our team like true professionals on and off the track.
“Both of these guys are at the peak of their powers, as is demonstrated by our results across the last few seasons.
“We look forward to the remainder of this season and next year with them behind the wheel of our Ford Mustang GTs.”
Coulthard, whose future at the team appeared uncertain at the start of the year, described the new deal as ‘quite special’.
After a difficult 2018 campaign, the 36-year-old has returned to form this season, racking up two wins and a further six podiums.
“Re-signing at Shell V-Power Racing Team is something quite special to me,” said Coulthard.
“The 2020 season will mark my fifth year driving for Dick Johnson and Roger Penske, and I have enjoyed being a part of this team immensely. Driving for two icons of the sport is a privilege, and I feel very fortunate to be in this position.
“The team provides both Scott and I with incredible equipment and amazing teamwork, allowing us to focus on our jobs without any distraction.
“The 2019 season has been amazing so far, and I hope that we can look for more of the same in 2020.”
Meanwhile, McLaughlin says he ‘couldn’t be happier’ to continue his relationship with the team that has yielded 29 race wins and the 2018 championship.
“We’ve been able to achieve so much together, and I couldn’t be happier to continue as a Shell V-Power Racing Team driver into the future,” said McLaughlin.
“This is the best team in Supercars. I don’t take the opportunity for granted, and will continue to push as hard as I can for great results at every event.”
The pair will hit the track at this weekend’s Watpac Townsville 400 on Friday with opening practice scheduled for 1055 AEST.