Costly pit stop incident at the Wilson Security Sandown 500
A mistake during a pit stop saw Wilson Security Racing GRM (Volvo Polestar Racing) drivers Scott McLaughlin and Alexandre Prémat dropping down the order.
The duo fought back up the field from 23rd position to finish 14th after 161 laps.
”We just had a bad day, it was a simple mistake by the crew in the pit stop and we went a lap down. That just stuffs your day up. But the car was unbelievable and Alex did a great job. We came back from 23rd to 14th, a recovery we should all be proud of,” said McLaughlin.
”I had a pretty good start and was up to 12th from 16th on the grid after a few laps. Unfortunately we had an issue in the pits. But anyway, it is motor racing and sometimes it is unpredictable. The car was a rocket, I was consistent and Scotty did a perfect job. We are looking forward to Bathurst where we are going for the win,” said Prémat.
David Wall and co-driver Chris Pither fought hard in the race but struggled with technical issues to finish 21st.
”Chris did a really good job with a different strategy to get some clear air in the first part of the race. After a safety car we had a mighty moment and the car didn’t quite feel the same from then on. Not sure if there was a drama or not, but definitely lost something after that restart that just dropped us back. It was just one of those days, bring on Bathurst,” said Wall.
”Unfortunately we didn’t quite get the result after the race as we had a little bit of a barge and the exhaust was squashed, as well as struggling a bit with in-balance with the car. I got some clear track in my first stint and I felt pretty comfortable in the car. Overall I think it was pretty solid and I think we are in pretty good shape for Bathurst,” said Pither.
The incident in the pitstop came as the hose to the air jacks was still connected to the car as Prémat exited the pits. This forced the Frenchman to pit again, losing a lap on the leaders that the duo later fought to regain.
”It has been a tough day. But we had a lot of pace, the car was really good over the distance which gives me a lot of confidence heading to Bathurst,” said McLaughlin
The Sandown 500 race was the first of three endurance races of the 2015 V8 Supercars championship where co-drivers and mandatory driver changes during pitstops play a major part in the strategy. Next up is the Bathurst 1000 race on October 9-11th where McLaughlin/Prémat qualified in the top three and fought for the lead last year.