Coulthard confident of Championship chance

  • 08/05/2015
  • By V8 Supercars
  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship

Fabian Coulthard's drive from 24th to third was clearly one of the standout performances at the UBET Perth SuperSprint - and on the back of what he describes as excellent team work, the Freightliner racer believes he can fight for the title this year.

While Coulthard was strong in the opening phase of the Championship in 2014 - including a win at Winton, which had him second in the points - performance dropped off around the Pirtek Enduro Cup, and he ultimately finished eighth overall.

But he believes the team has overcome last years issues and thinks Brad Jones Racingwill continue to run from strength to strength in 2015.

"We had our areas of weakness last year mid-way through the year - a key area we were struggling a lot was at the faster tracks," Coulthard told

"We no longer have that problem anymore so I don't see us falling away in the back half, or through the middle of the year like we did last year...

"I feel like we've made in-roads in the off-season in those areas - obviously we're still improving our car, like everybody is throughout the year and can always make it better - but I feel like some of the areas of weakness last year are becoming our strengths, so I'm expecting to give it a good run for the Championship."

At the season opening Clipsal 500, Coulthard won Race Two and achieved BJR's first ever win at a street track. The win also marks the first victory at a 'marquee' event - next on 'to do' list will surely be an endurance race, with the team yet to win at Sandown, Bathurst or the Gold Coast.

"We need to contend for podiums and race wins on a consistent basis - in the past it's been a little bit sporadic," Coulthard said.

"I've had four podiums over the first three race [meetings] so I think it's turning around, with no short amount of hard work - everyone's putting in, everyone's got the same common goal and that's just to get our Freightliner car as far up the grid as we possibly can."

Coulthard credits his team for the support he was provided over the weekend in Perth, at the back of the grid after he caused a red flag in qualifying.

"I think it showed on the weekend that when the chips are down we don't give up and we strive to do the best possible job given any scenario. I think the belief, the faith, my team had at the end of the weekend didn't go unnoticed - they kept me calm and said, 'look, this is how it's got to be, don't stress about it, the outcome will be fine' and sure enough it was. So, pretty good weekend."

Coulthard's contract with BJR is up for renewal at the end of the season, and with Jamie Whincup, Craig Lowndes and Shane van Gisbergen - the three biggest names to sign in 2015 - already locked away at Triple Eight, the Kiwi is considered one of the most valuable drivers available.

He said at the end of last year he was content where he was, and it seems not much has changed.

"I'm happy where I am and I've not kept that a secret," he said.

"They build me a good car, it's reliable, I get results with it. But look, at the end of the day contract-wise I just do the best possible job I can do at every weekend I go to, and hopefully my contract sorts itself out and we can come to some agreement. So I'll keep going about my business, doing my thing and hopefully that sorts itself out."

Looking back, Coulthard believes both speed and strategy combined to see him power through the pack in Perth.

"Third at the end of the day was still an awesome outcome - a team effort, no one lost faith, no one gave up after qualifying and we all came away with a good result, so it was a pretty good day."

Coulthard won at Winton last year on Saturday and while he was in a good position in Sunday's race, was controversially pinged for speeding in pit lane.

Fans can tune in to Inside Supercars this Tuesday at 7.30pm on FOX SPORTS 506 for more with Coulthard, who will be joined by Lee Holdsworth on the panel.

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