Four-time Bathurst 1000 winner Jamie Whincup says Shane van Gisbergen’s maiden win in the Great Race has been long overdue.
Prior to this year’s win, the Kiwi had finished runner-up twice in 2016 and 2019 respectively with the Red Bull Holden Racing Team.
In both instances, the battle for the win came down to the last lap with the margin between the top two less than a second at the chequered flag.
Before that, van Gisbergen came agonisingly close to winning the 2014 edition with Jonathon Webb and Tekno Autosports (now Team Sydney).
However, van Gisbergen stalled in the pit lane while leading the race during his final pit stop and was unable to get his car refired immediately, going on to finish 16th and several laps down.
“He was in the box seat when the starter motor didn’t work,” Whincup said.
“It’s been a long time coming. He’s one of the best drivers we’ve seen in this country. He deserves a Bathurst win. It’s fantastic to see he’s finally got one.”
Triple Eight Race Engineering Principal Roland Dane echoed Whincup’s sentiment.
“I think he can justifiably feel that he should have got it before,” said Dane.
“Given what happened in 2014 when he was leading in the Tekno car. He’s been second twice for us. He’s been close. He fully deserves this one.
“The guy is just outstanding. Over the last however many years, 15 years, we’ve only had three full-time drivers (with Holden). Craig, Jamie, and Shane. They’ve all been awesome in the different eras.
“Shane is right up there and this victory was just massively well deserved and something that to be honest he should’ve had before. He’s finally got it.”