Van Gisbergen cherishes ARC debut, eyes more rallies

Shane van Gisbergen in full flight at the Netier National Capital Rally

Shane van Gisbergen has flagged his desire to contest more rally events after securing a fine second-place finish in the Netier National Capital Rally.

The two-time Supercars champion finished his Australian Rally Championship debut on a high, winning the televised EROAD Power Stage.

“It’s been awesome, I can’t believe we’ve won that,” reacted van Gisbergen, who was driving a Red Bull-backed Skoda Fabia R5.

“We just built up the whole time and after that last service I felt really good on the new tyres and thought ‘we’ll have a push through these three [stages]’ and all three of them were super competitive.”

Only beaten overall by 2019 ARC champion Harry Bates, van Gisbergen spoke highly of how much he enjoyed the challenge.

“It’s just been a pleasure all weekend, everyone has been really welcoming,” he said.

“The team has been awesome, it’s been great working with Glen [Weston, co-driver] and learning quite a lot.

“I love this sport and I really want to do more.

“It’s a big challenge, a big mental game.

“You have got no references, no one to tell you to go faster, you’re just on your own out there with your co-driver and you have got to trust the notes and trust in each other a lot. It’s very different.”

Asked what’s next, rally-wise, van Gisbergen replied: “I don’t know. There’s a few conflicts but I would to do more.

“Hopefully this weekend helps and we’ll see what we can do.”

The Forest Rally in Western Australia is next on the ARC calendar on May 20-22 – the same weekend that the Repco Supercars Championship is due to be racing at Winton Motor Raceway.

Van Gisbergen will be back behind the wheel of his #97 Red Bull Ampol Racing ZB Commodore next weekend for Round 3 of the Supercars Championship at Albert Park.

The lead support category for the Formula 1 Heineken Australian Grand Prix, Supercars will first hit the track on Thursday.

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