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Johnson responds to team orders investigation

Tom Howard

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Monday 14th October, 2019 - 6:56pm

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Dick Johnson (left) celebrates victory with Scott McLaughlin, Alex Premat, and Roger Penske

Dick Johnson has rubbished suggestions that Scott McLaughlin and Alex Premat will be stripped of victory in the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.

The results of Sunday’s Great Race remain provisional amid an investigation into an alleged team orders breach by Shell V-Power Racing regarding the actions of McLaughlin’s team-mate Fabian Coulthard, who was instructed to slow down under a Safety Car.

Coulthard was told to slow down by the team, which has stated the car was suffering from an overheating engine.

As a result, the field backed up behind the #12 car and allowed DJRTP to complete Coulthard’s pit stop without stacking its Mustangs.

Speedcafe.com understands that, if the charge is upheld, penalties are expected to range from a loss of teams’ championship points and a fine.

However, penalties could be more severe depending on evidence tendered in the hearing.

Speaking on Macquarie Sports Radio, DJR Team Penske co-owner Johnson believes the action did not alter the outcome of the race.

“That’s rubbish,” said Johnson, who celebrated his team’s first Bathurst 1000 win since 1994.

“Look, could you imagine that happening? You’ve got to be joking.

“Whatever happened did not change the outcome of that event one iota.

“That is my opinion from the ramblings that are going on.

“But I don’t really know enough about it to be able to make any firm comment.”

Race winner McLaughlin is meanwhile unconcerned by the investigation as the enormity of winning the Great Race for the first time is beginning to sink in.

DJRTP is set to face a hearing to determine if it breached the rules prior to the Vodafone Gold Coast 600 (October 25-27).

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