The flow-on effect of Gen3 changes

The Gen3 Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro prototypes recently tested at Queensland Raceway. Picture: Matthew Paul Photography

A late redesign of Supercars’ Gen3 project could be a blessing in disguise for the future of the championship, according to Adrian Burgess.

Ahead of an introduction for the start of the 2023 season, the front-end of the control chassis has been re-worked in recent weeks.

Computer-Aided Design (CAD) changes have been made to the suspension, while the engine bay has been widened from the original design.

It follows on from an earlier major overhaul to the Gen3 prototypes in March to resolve driver discomfort issues.

While these kinks are being ironed out, a sharp focus centres around getting Gen3 as close to the best product possible from the outset.

Supercars’ Head of Motorsport, Burgess believes the long-term viability of the championship’s new formula will outweigh any turn-around pressures.

“That’s obviously the target, is to get it right from the get-go,” Burgess told Speedcafe.com when asked about the impact of the late redesign.

“The Wright brothers didn’t build an [Airbus] A380 straight out of the gate, did they? So these things are always an evolution and the thing keeps evolving.

“Every race, you look at a Formula 1 team, they bring updates to every grand prix.

“So we’re not quite that bad. But you don’t just design a perfect car all in one go.

“I mean, there’s been quite a bit of change, but that’s exactly what this year is about.

“That’s why we built two prototypes, to find the mistakes, fix the mistakes, and then by the time the teams start manufacturing, hopefully, the parts are final, and it’s good to go for 5, 6, 7 years.”

Burgess’ sentiment was echoed by Triple Eight Race Engineering boss Jamie Whincup, who out-lined last week that his team is in fact ahead of schedule on its eight Chevrolet Camaro chassis builds.

Triple Eight has worked closely with Supercars on the design of the control chassis which will be run under the Camaro and Mustang bodies.

Whincup agreed the most important item on the agenda is ensuring the Gen3 cars are right from the get-go.

“Even the last change, [Project] Blueprint to Car of the Future, it was all last minute-dot-com,” he told Speedcafe.com.

“Because we’ve got a little bit more time, we’re always trying to make it better.

“We’re constantly trying to evolve and adapt and make it better, and the industry is changing as well.

“Material shortages, there are supply shortages, there are better ways of doing things; things have come down in price as well.

“So therefore it makes it [the redesign] worthwhile to be able to do, so yeah, of course, we want to make sure the car that rolls out at Newcastle next year is the best thing we can we can produce.”

As the Camaro homologation team, Triple Eight has been heavily involved in the prototype testing programme, with the most recent hit out taking place at Queensland Raceway last week.

Whincup provided detail on some of the many agenda items that need to be ticked off.

“What a lot of people don’t know is we’ve got Supercars personnel and people from all over the place coming to our workshop [and] working on the prototype, just developing it, refining it,” he added.

“There are hundreds and hundreds of jobs to do before we go racing and one of those for example is trying to get the fuel flow right.

“So you say ‘yes, this is a fuel filler we want, and this is the fuel tank, and this is the line we’re going to run’ but you actually physically have to fill the thing up with fuel from the rig to work out if it’s all gonna work.

“We were aiming for 35-second fill time, which is what our current Gen2 cars are, and the first one we did [for Gen3] was 50 seconds, it was miles out.

“The crew from Supercars, with help from us, we messed around for two days and got it down to high 30 seconds with more development still to come.

“But that’s just one example of hundreds that we’re doing helping Supercars and the category get to get to a good position. So when it rolls out in Newcastle, happy days.

“We’re certainly working closely with Supercars to make this car as good as it can be.”

Supercars’ Gen3 prototypes will be put through their paces at The Bend Motorsport Park with a dedicated hour-long session on Friday afternoon of the OTR SuperSprint.

A full day of testing will then take place on the Monday following the event.

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