SHANE van Gisbergen will wait and see how Supercars’ new Gen3 cars race next season before committing to his future in the category.
The 33-year-old secured his third Supercars Championship title – and his second consecutive – at the Boost Mobile Gold Coast 500 today with three races remaining.
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Van Gisbergen achieved the feat in fine style, scoring a dominant 20th race victory from 31 starts this year in what is already the winningest Supercars season in history.
The Kiwi’s dominance and his success in cameo appearances in other disciplines, most recently rallying, have raised questions over whether he’ll move on from Supercars.
He’s raced full-time in the class since midway through the 2007 season, joined Triple Eight in 2016 and is believed to have one more year on his current deal.
Asked how long he wants to continue in Supercars in the wake of his third title, van Gisbergen said: “That depends on Gen3, probably.
“I would like to stay here. If I stay in Supercars, I’ll definitely stay with Triple Eight. I love the team. And we have started talking about a new deal.
“But maybe I’d like to start next year and see what the racing is like. The car has potential, but you know, I’d like to race people as well.
“The race [today] was probably pretty stale. When you follow someone, you can hardly follow with the aero stuff.
“Let’s see. Hopefully next year it’s a better race car. I’d love to stay in Supercars, it’s close to home.”
Supercars has aimed to slash downforce levels with its Gen3 machines in order to improve the quality of racing, reducing the ‘aero wash’ issue faced with the current cars.
The new cars also feature more control components in a bid to reduce costs and level the playing field between teams, albeit at the expense of engineering freedom.
“I just want it to be fun. And a good car to drive,” van Gisbergen continued.
“At the start of the year, they let us drive [the prototype] a bit but then I haven’t driven it since Tassie (Symmons Plains in March) for some reason.
“They are giving it to other people (to drive).
“I’m not sure (why), I just hope it is a good race car, a fun race car, for everyone. And we still have some room to develop it and change it around.
“We don’t want it to be like Porsche Cup where they are all the same speed and boring racing. It sounds very stock at the moment.
“Maybe we’ll have a lot of things we can change on the car.
“At the moment you can see a Walkinshaw car, you can see a Grove car, a DJR car. You can see the differences when you’re driving.
“I just hope that we’re not locked in next year and everyone is the same and it makes the racing stale.
“Everything they say about it is good, they are talking it up, all the engineers. And I trust them. But we’ll see at the first race what it is really like.”