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Van Gisbergen, Coulthard: Aero wash ‘the worst it’s ever been’

Simon Chapman

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Saturday 27th June, 2020 - 6:35pm

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Shane van Gisbergen caught but couldn’t pass Scott McLaughlin

Shane van Gisbergen and Fabian Coulthard have called for Supercars to make further downforce reductions, labelling aero wash “the worst it’s ever been”.

Earlier this year Supercars introduced changes to the Holden Commodore and Ford Mustang following a 2019 season dominated by parity discussion.

Downforce across both cars was reduced by approximately 12 percent to achieve parity with restrictions imposed on rear wing angles between the cars.

Speaking after Race 7 of the season, Coulthard lamented a poor effort in qualifying as well as a flat spot from a lock-up in the race.

He went on to recover and claim 10th in the race but was disheartened by the inability to pass on merit due to dirty air.

“This year is the worst it’s been,” said Coulthard.

“It’s just so hard to follow. It’s pretty much follow the leader, which to me, is not enjoyable.

“Adelaide was the same too. Obviously I’ve only got myself to blame (for the result). I qualified where I qualified and put myself in that position, but definitely, it’s hard to pass.

“You can’t follow. Hopefully we can sort something out. Obviously the fans want to see manoeuvres being made.

“Admittedly, towards the end of the race with the tyre deg, there is a discrepancy between the cars.

“There is some passing, but I feel like we should be able to have that passing any time in the race to spice things up.”

McLaughlin echoed Coulthard’s sentiment, labelling the dirty air as a big hindrance rather than tyre fall off.

“I think until we get the downforce off the car and dirty air lower, it doesn’t really matter what tyre we put on it,” said McLaughlin when asked whether the soft compound tyre could be developed.

The final stanza of Race 7 saw van Gisbergen hunt down McLaughlin at a rate of several tenths per lap.

He caught his countryman with a handful of laps to go; however, once he arrived at the rear bumper of the Shell V-Power Racing Team pilot, a pass was not forthcoming.

Asked whether the cars had too much downforce, van Gisbergen offered a simple, “Yes” in reply.

He later elaborated on the issue, like McLaughlin, making comparisons with the Dunlop tyre that he believes is adequate.

“I think our tyre is pretty decent, I think it could operate in a different temperature window, but first you’ve got to be able to follow the cars and then that’ll make the racing better than the tyres,” said van Gisbergen.

“I think the aero is the worst it’s ever been now with the gurneys. I think Dunlop are doing a really good job, the batches are really consistent.”

The Virgin Australia Supercars Championship continues at Sydney Motorsport Park tomorrow with two qualifying sessions to determine the grid for Race 8 and Race 9 of the season.

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