Shane van Gisbergen signs new Triple Eight contract

Shane van Gisbergen contract

Supercars champion Shane van Gisbergen has signed a new contract to drive for Triple Eight Race Engineering

Shane van Gisbergen has recommitted to Supercars by signing a multi-year contract extension to drive for Red Bull Ampol Racing.

Having joined Triple Eight Race Engineering in 2016, the agreement will take him to at least a decade at the team with which he has won the championship three times and the Repco Bathurst 1000 twice.

It also puts to rest doubts about van Gisbergen’s short-term future in the category after he caused a stir with comments he made at last year’s Gold Coast 600.

Then, having just unofficially wrapped up the 2022 drivers’ championship, he explained that he wanted to experience how the new-for-2023 Gen3 cars raced before deciding whether or not to stay in Supercars.

Van Gisbergen was also criticised on live national television by commentator/RACE board member Mark Skaife during this year’s season-opener in Newcastle over a controversial press conference, but his effective refusal to answer questions was in fact motivated by the reaction from within the senior ranks of Supercars over critique of Gen3.

Now, the man who won the 2022 championship in record-breaking fashion is locked in for at least two more years, although the precise length of the contract is unspecified.

Triple Eight’s announcement today proclaims, in part, “Red Bull Ampol Racing is thrilled to announce that three-time Supercars champion, and two-time Bathurst 1000 winner, Shane ‘SVG’ van Gisbergen has signed a multi-year contract extension with the team, where he’ll remain driver of the #97 Chevrolet Camaro in the Supercars Championship.”

Jamie Whincup shared a garage with van Gisbergen as his regular team-mate for the New Zealander’s first six years at the squad and is nowadays his boss, having succeeded Roland Dane as Team Principal in 2022.

CLICK HERE for van Gisbergen’s comments on the deal

Whincup said of the new deal, “It’s always great news when you have the best driver in the country deciding to put his faith in the team at Triple Eight Race Engineering to give him a fast, reliable race car to showcase his skills.

“It’s a huge honour that Shane has chosen us to continue that relationship. We will of course continue to invest in him, his support crew, engineering and mechanics, to give him the best equipment to remain competitive in the sport.

“We as a team need the best drivers in the country to showcase our skills. At the end of the day, we’re an engineering company and we pride ourselves on building the best race cars and componentry and representing ourselves in the highest regard.

“One of those factors is that we need someone to get behind the wheel and showcase that work we do and represent the brand and our partners in the highest possible light, and we believe Shane is the best person for that.

“We pride ourselves at Triple Eight to keep making gains and keep improving as a team – we certainly aren’t box-tickers.

“As a group, we’ve all been working flat out behind the scenes to ensure that we keep the trajectory that we’ve built over the past 15 years, and in some regard Shane’s extension endorses that work – if the best driver in the country wants to continue in this place, then it shows that we’re doing a good job.

“The highest priority for me is having drivers that put everything on the line and showcase their extreme skill.

“Everyone that buys a ticket to a Supercars event or watches it on television wants to see drivers who put their bodies on the line and take risks to do extraordinary things, and that’s exactly what SVG does.

“You always have to respect the athletes in the arena, or on the field, or on the track – the ones out there giving their all.

“The day you don’t respect that is the day that you don’t respect sport.

“That’s what we respect him for – giving his absolute all, week in and week out.”

Van Gisbergen is currently third in the championship, 86 points behind leader Brodie Kostecki, although he would be leading if not for a disqualification for a technical infringement in Race 1 in Newcastle.

The 33-year-old scored a win and two second places through the four races which made up the most recent event of the campaign, at Albert Park, taking him to a tally of 170 career podiums.

In doing so, he edged fellow Triple Eight legend Craig Lowndes’ 169 and is now second only to Whincup’s 237 in the all-time rankings, while his 77 race wins to date are the fourth-greatest haul in championship history, and the 21 van Gisbergen collected last year a single-season record.

As well as the Kiwi’s own drivers’ titles, he has been part of four teams’ championship victories for Triple Eight (2016, 2018, 2021, 2022) and lifted the Pirtek Enduro Cup with Alexandre Premat in 2016.

The 2023 Supercars season continues when the Bosch Power Tools Perth SuperSprint kicks off next Friday, April 28.

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