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Chevrolet drivers’ unexpected Ford parity remarks

CHEVROLET drivers have turned the tables on their Ford counterparts during the Repco Bathurst 1000.

The 2023 Great Race – and indeed the entire first season of Supercars competition with the Gen3 cars – has been dominated by talk about parity.

Or rather, disparity.

Ford’s push for a revised aerodynamic package, aimed to reduce drag and improve tyre life, was knocked back just hours before opening practice at Bathurst.

Ford drivers have subsequently been adamant that they’d struggle against the Camaros due in part to a straightline speed deficit.

Camaro drivers have indeed commanded the opening half of the race, with leading teams Erebus Motorsport and Triple Eight enjoying much of the front-running.

However, in interviews on the television broadcast, two Chevrolet drivers have made eyebrow-raising comments about the Fords.

The first was Team 18’s Scott Pye, who began by explaining an early clash with fellow Camaro driver Dale Wood.

“I had an unlucky incident with Dale Wood, I think he tried to stay on the outside there, I don’t think we picked up any damage,” said Pye.

“It’s slightly right-hand down but it seems to be going along pretty good, because the pace at the end of that stint was really good. We moved forward, got Chaz (Mostert) at the end.

“Those Fords in a straightline are so fast, but in the tow we can kind of stay there and then I can set them up for the last corner, because I’ve got a better drive out of The Chase.”

The straight-faced comment drew plenty of scepticism, given how the race has been playing out.

Shane van Gisbergen, whose Camaro he shares with Richie Stanaway is well in contention for victory at halfway, later made a similar remark.

The #97 is in its own race for track position with the sister car of Broc Feeney/Jamie Whincup, with the Triple Eight team enduring the lamented double-stack pitstops.

“This stacking stuff is so difficult: we mucked over #88 then, now we’re trying to short-fill not to hurt them and they’re trying to come up with things to get in front of us,” he said.

“Really, track position is tough, it’s impossible to pass the Fords, they’re so fast down the straight but it is what it is, we’ve got to keep trucking along.

“Richie is doing amazing, we’ll see how we go.”

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