Shell V-Power Racing Team engineer Ludo Lacroix believes Scott McLaughlin can take what he has learned in Supercars to succeed in the IndyCar Series.
With second place in Race 30 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship at the OTR SuperSprint The Bend, the 27-year-old stretched his points lead to over 300 points.
It means McLaughlin goes into this year’s season-ending Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 as champion elect with an insurmountable lead.
McLaughlin has been joined by French engineer Ludo Lacroix in all three of his championship wins to date.
With an IndyCar Series debut beckoning in the United States in less than a month’s time, Lacroix said he expects McLaughlin to be successful.
“I think he has learned a lot with us in terms of professionalism and he is going to a very professional team,” said Lacroix on Fox Sports’ Supercars Trackside.
“He is going to have the best engineer you can buy. He is going to be with the best people you can have on race cars.
“Because he is very generous in his way to people, he will get back that generosity and cannot not be successful.
“He is a genuine good guy and that’s very important to me,” Lacroix said when asked what he liked most about McLaughlin.
“He’s somebody I could go on a holiday (11with) for a week. That makes a big difference sometimes.
“So you can attach to him because he is one of the best drivers in that respect. Not by the talent, but by the fact he is a superb person.”
McLaughlin’s future in the IndyCar Series beyond 2020 remains firmly up in the air, though the Kiwi has said he has a contract for 2021 with DJR Team Penske.
However, when asked about the prospect of this year being his last in Supercars, McLaughlin said, “you’ve just got to take your opportunities when (they) come and we’ll just wait and see.”
Before his long-awaited IndyCar Series debut, McLaughlin will be vying for his second straight Bathurst 1000 win, this time alongside Tim Slade.
DJR Team Penske heads into the Bathurst 1000 looking to hold its lead in the teams’ championship but with plans to go all-out.
Lacroix said the drivers’ championship win is a weight off the team’s shoulders.
“I am very relieved and very happy to send Scott (to) Indy for his start with not having to think about anything else,” he said.
“I am very happy not to have to think going into Bathurst (about) conserving something.
“That’s going to give us a fantastic Bathurst because both teams are going to go at it like mad, which is superb.”