Dutton explains SVG practice ‘niggles’

Shane van Gisbergen. Picture: Ross Gibb Photography

Shane van Gisbergen. Picture: Ross Gibb Photography

Shane van Gisbergen was set back in Perth Supercars practice by a series of “niggles” in his Red Bull Ampol Racing Camaro, Team Manager Mark Dutton has explained.

The 2022 champion was 14th-quickest in the sole, 90-minute session ahead of Qualifying for Race 7 at the Bosch Power Tools Perth SuperSprint, with his final flying lap compromised by issues pertaining to brake bias and his gear lever.

Van Gisbergen was heard reporting on his radio at the end of the lap that “I have no [expletive] idea where my bias is,” then added, “Now there’s a gear lever that’s stuck.”

According to Dutton, the former was a function of how brake bias is displayed on the dashboard of a Gen3 car while the latter did not compromise gear shifting.

“It wasn’t displayed exactly how he’d like it to be,” he told Speedcafe.

“This year, there’s a lot of changes with how we could display things compared to last year, and it’s only three rounds in so we’re still trying to make sure that where we’re adapting the drivers to some new systems and making sure the new systems are working well.

“The gear lever thing was just reporting of an issue that happened. It got stuck in the forward position. That didn’t make it miss-shift or anything like that, but you note everything, just in case it could lead to a bigger issue.

“So we had no shift issues as such, but that still also shouldn’t happen.”

There was also a scare of sorts when marbles got trapped within the car and gave the impression of a possible fire, after two Mustangs went up in flames at the previous event of the season.

“With the new cars, we’re being a bit cautious,” Dutton noted.

“There were some smells, there were times where there was some smoke.

“The smoke ended up just being rubber trapped in different places where we hadn’t seen before, and things like that, so they sound pretty simple once you find the answer.

“But obviously, when you’ve got a car that’s new, and experiences that happened at the Grand Prix, you’re just a little bit cautious, so those things did eat into some of our time.”

While van Gisbergen’s result was subpar, team-mate and last start race winner Broc Feeney fared little better, ending the session in 11th.

Dutton admitted the team was “not fast enough” and has a task overnight.

“We’ll go through and analyse,” he remarked.

“We were doing some decent changes, some decent-swing changes, so whenever you do those, you do have to be mindful of maybe not getting the fully refined set-up without going through all the data.

“Yeah, we’ve got some homework to do tonight.”

Qualifying for Race 7 of the season takes place tomorrow from 11:10 local time/13:10 AEST.

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