McLaughlin wants to see van Gisbergen in IndyCar

Shane van Gisbergen in a Toyota FT-60 at the 2021 New Zealand Grand Prix event

Scott McLaughlin would like to see fellow Supercars champion Shane van Gisbergen race in IndyCar more than any other driver who is not currently in the series.

McLaughlin won three straight Repco Supercars Championship titles before Team Penske took him Stateside at the end of 2020, and is now a two-time race winner at the top level of North American open-wheel competition.

His 2018 triumph was secured only on the final day of the season in Newcastle when he eventually prevailed over van Gisbergen, who has since added the 2021 crown to that which he achieved in 2016, and is in the box seat to go back-to-back.

On the latest episode of his and team-mate Josef Newgarden’s online Bus Bros show (Watch below), McLaughlin took a fan question which read, ‘If you could bring a driver from any other series into IndyCar, who would it be?’

The 29-year-old responded, “Shane van Gisbergen,” before explaining, “I just think he would be good; it would be interesting to see.”

Newgarden said, “I would love whoever anyone thinks is the best in the world, whether it’s a [Lewis] Hamilton or [Fernando] Alonso or [Sebastian] Vettel.

“I think they would have an interesting time going over to IndyCar and trying it.”

While van Gisbergen has not competed in a particularly high level in wings and slicks, his most notable result arguably being the last-to-first win in the 2021 New Zealand Grand Prix, the 33-year-old Kiwi boasts a CV which is becoming more and more diverse.

Today, he is even making a first appearance in the New Zealand Rally Championship with a start in the Hawke’s Bay Rally in the same Skoda Fabia R5 in which he is set to make his World Rally Championship debut at home in September.

On top of the Red Bull Ampol Racing ZB Commodore Supercar which is his usual ride, van Gisbergen has also driven a Mercedes-AMG GT3 in the Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hour and a Ferrari 488 GTE Evo in the 24 Hours of Le Mans this year alone.

He is, in fact, a Bathurst 12 Hour winner, a GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup champion, and a runner-up in his only RSEA Safety Motorsport Australia Rally Championship start to date, finishing slower than only Toyota’s Harry Bates in the National Capital Rally back in April.

The Auckland native was also in line to race a TA2 in the Turtle Wax Trans Am Series next month at Queensland Raceway, although Triple Eight Race Engineering blocked that drive.

While there is no suggestion that van Gisbergen may move into IndyCar, either full-time or on a cameo basis, anytime soon, another Penske driver in Will Power recently cited McLaughlin as evidence that drivers who follow the Supercars pathway could make it in the North American category.

Power set the pace in this morning’s (AEST) sole practice session for the Iowa double-header, with McLaughlin taking third.

Qualifying and Race 1 of the weekend will be held tomorrow morning, with Stan Sport the only place to see those sessions in Australia, live and ad-free.

Bus Bros, Episode 7

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