Jamie Whincup has reflected on his explosive comments towards race officials stating that they were not helpful while admitting he shouldn’t have passed the Safety Car in Race 24.
The seven-time Supercars champion has issued a personal statement in response to his role in a chaotic Safety Car period during Sunday’s race at the ITM Auckland Super Sprint.
Whincup was at the centre of the controversy after choosing to pass the Safety Car without permission having felt Race Control’s decision to pick him up was incorrect.
He then revealed his frustration on television post-race questioning Race Control’s professionalism, with those comments leading to the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport issuing a letter to the Triple Eight driver asking him to explain the remarks.
Whincup has this evening issued a statement revealing his regret over the comments made and the decision to pass the Safety Car.
“Now that the heat of the battle has subsided, I’ve had a chance to reflect on Sunday’s race,” read a statement issued to Speedcafe.com from Whincup.
“I without fail give 110 percent in every race and that inevitably leads to passions running high.
“This passion spreads throughout the whole team and we had worked incredibly hard to put ourselves into a great position on Sunday.
“I have asked myself today though, were my comments post-race helpful? The answer to that is no.
“I’m a big believer in helping people to do their jobs to the best of their ability and that’s what I should have focused on instead of criticising.
“While I knew I wasn’t the leader of the race, and despite my engineer confidently telling me over the radio to not get held up by the safety car, the lights in front of me were orange.
“Every athlete in any sport needs to follow the directions of the officials, whether they feel the correct decision was made or not.
“I recognise I am a role model and so the critical point I want to make to all the kids watching is that passing the safety car and going against the officials’ decision isn’t how we should play.
“In hindsight I wish I made a smarter split-second decision.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you that watched Pukekohe on the weekend, both at the track and on TV or online, as it was a cracking weekend of racing that really showed the current strength of our amazing sport.”