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Whincup willing to go backwards in bid to catch DJRTP

Tom Howard

Friday 5th July, 2019 - 9:43pm

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Jamie Whincup

Jamie Whincup has no interest in continuing running traditional set-ups and is prepared to go a step backwards at Townsville in a bid to unearth ‘gold’ to beat Shell V-Power Racing.

The seven-time champion is currently enduring his longest barren run in Supercars which stretches back to last year’s Sandown 500.

Whincup’s winless streak has coincided with Triple Eight facing a tough battle to match the Ford pace-setters and overcome the category’s move to linear spring dampers.

This weekend, the squad is in action at one of its strongholds in Townsville’s Reid Park Circuit, a venue which has yielded an event record 10 wins for Whincup.

Despite the previous successes at the track, Whincup says his side of the garage has ignored its tried and tested set-up in practice in search of finding an edge to take that elusive win.

The 36-year-old claimed to have had wholesale changes in his car during Friday practice referring to a combination of a radical set-up and new developments.  

“We could run a more traditional sort of something that’s going to work pretty good around here, but I think we’re going to be P2, P3 at best. So I’ve got no interest in that,” Whincup, who ended Practice 2 in 16th position, told Speedcafe.com.

“I’d rather run P6 or 7 or P10 this weekend, to do some learning to hopefully by the end of the year be the quickest car again.

“We weren’t fast at the end of the session because of the changes, we’re going to stick with it for P3 and see if we can find some gold.

“There’s concerns (in regard to pace), for sure, but no bigger concern than not being fast enough. 

“We’re not just going to keep fishing in the same pond and keep just cruising around, getting dusted by the guys next door. I’ve got no interest in that. 

“If I’ve got a make a step back in an attempt to make two steps forward, then that’s what we’ll do.”

Whincup’s team-mate Shane van Gisbergen enjoyed a far stronger showing in practice, ending the day in second behind Tickford Racing’s Lee Holdsworth.

The Supercars field will return to the track for Practice 3 on Saturday at 0955 AEST.

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