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McLaughlin declines Gen3 drive offer

SCOTT McLaughlin has ruled out sampling Supercars’ incoming Gen3 machinery at the VALO Adelaide 500.

Having attended the Surfers Paradise round late last month, McLaughlin will attend Adelaide in a formal capacity as part of the Supercars broadcast team.

With that came the possibility of cutting prototype laps at the final Repco Supercars Championship event before the Ford Mustang S650 and Chevrolet Camaro replace the existing S550 and Holden ZB Commodore models.

However, McLaughlin is in a tricky space with regards to his brand allegiance.

MORE: McLaughlin enters team ownership arena

He’s a Ford superstar in Australia after leading the Shell V-Power Racing Team to three championships over Holden archrivals Triple Eight, but is now connected to Chevrolet in the United States via his Team Penske squad.

Regardless, the 29-year-old insists he’s more than happy to stay out of the driver’s seat while back Down Under.

McLaughlin has previously spoken of wanting to avoid re-learning Supercars habits which might not benefit his IndyCar driving; that in part has contributed to his recent absences from the Repco Bathurst 1000 grid.

“I’m not really interested,” McLaughlin, who has today been announced as an Adelaide 500 ‘fanbassador’, said of any potential Gen3 laps.

“I just want to enjoy my time just hanging out. I was actually at Gold Coast the other week and I genuinely just felt very, I just enjoyed the race, I was a fan and loved it.

“I had no inkling, maybe a little bit of itchy feet in qualifying but I think ultimately I’m enjoying the spectacle of it all and seeing the different side of it from a viewership perspective.

“I haven’t spoken about getting in the car at all at any time, there’s not really a want to do that.”

Pressed further, McLaughlin admitted he had been offered a Gen3 cameo.

“I got asked to but there was things that, like contractually it just didn’t work, and I didn’t really want to,” he continued.

“I think they have got some good drivers driving them with heaps of experience right now.

“I think I would be saying similar stuff to what these guys are saying as well so I’m quite happily just watching it.”

The Shell V-Power Racing Team is the homologation squad for the Gen3 S650 Mustang. Pic: Supplied

He also voiced his desire to lap up the broadcast opportunity, even if he doesn’t expect every interviewee to be totally welcoming of him.

McLaughlin has at various times spoken of the toxicity he felt existed in the Supercars paddock prior to his departure.

“I can’t change people’s opinions about me or what went on, so I’m not really going to go out of my way to try to fix that myself, that’s up to them,” he said.

“I’ve gone about my business and they have about theirs’ and that’s fine… I’ll just do my job. I’m excited to see what it’s like on that side, interviewing various people and whatever.

“I haven’t really tried to mend anything so whether it’s a drama or whatever, I mean at the end of the day the tension was there but I felt like it was a competitive tension for the most part.

“Certainly there was some people that made it personal but at the same time I don’t hold any grudges, I just get on with my life and it is what it is.”

The Adelaide 500 will be held across December 1-4.

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