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HomeNewsWHY WHINCUP WON'T LOCK DOWN DRIVERS

WHY WHINCUP WON’T LOCK DOWN DRIVERS

TRIPLE Eight Race Engineering has arguably the two hottest properties in the long-term driver market but the team is feeling no pressure to table them monster contract extensions.

Shane van Gisbergen has been far and away the class of the field in the past 18 months, winning the 2021 championship and all but certain to go back-to-back.

On the other side of the garage is teenager Broc Feeney, who won the Dunlop Super2 Series last year and is in the midst of a fine rookie main game campaign.

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Both drivers will return next season but Triple Eight managing director Jamie Whincup was cagey when asked about beyond 2023.

“We’re just on a journey, we’re not at contract negotiation time. When that time comes, we’ll have a chat to them,” he told V8 Sleuth.

As for moving to lock in drivers long-term to safeguard themselves from potential poaching raids, Whincup was more direct.

“No, we’re pretty confident that we have got two of the fastest race cars on the grid so no, we’re not locking away drivers forever,” he said.

Feeney (right) is congratulated by van Gisbergen at Sandown. Pic: Mark Horsburgh

“Gee, if our drivers feel they can do better somewhere else, then good luck to them.”

While van Gisbergen is 500 points clear of the field with four rounds remaining this season, Feeney has generally found himself more around the middle of the top 10.

The #88 pilot, who was a last-start podium finisher at Sandown, has at times been hard on himself but drew the praise of his boss.

“I thank him for having a crack. Someone circulating around conservatively has no value to us at all, so have a crack,” Whincup added.

Round 10 of the Repco Supercars Championship unfolds this weekend at Pukekohe Park Raceway.

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