Good as gold

  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 19/09/2016
  • By Kassie Gadeke - Bruce Newton

Twenty-year old rookie James Golding was out cutting laps in his Dunlop Series car yesterday despite his huge lap one crash at Sunday’s Wilson Security Sandown 500.

While the team assessed the Volvo S60 at the workshop and expects to repair it, the drivers conducted a ride day at Sandown with team director Barry Rogers, son of owner Garry, saying Golding had no issues despite the big impact.

“He’s good as gold, he’s a little bit sore in the groin mainly. It was unfortunate,” Rogers said.

“I rang his dad and spoke to him and said ‘if you don’t feel like you’re right’ don’t feel as though [you have to drive].”

The team is now awaiting final sign off from Supercars’ technical team today to repair the chassis and has a spare waiting in the wings, but Rogers says the damage wasn’t quite as bad as it looked. 

The #34 Volvo flew off track at high speed, smashing the front of the car with the major damage the right chassis rail.

It had been a solid weekend to that point, qualifying on the second row, but the accident meant Golding and James Moffat were not able to complete even one lap of the enduro classic.

“We’ve got the original car that we took to Kuala Lumpur last year, so there’s nothing wrong with that – there’d be no issue pulling all the bits off and putting them on that – but I think we’d rather fix the car if that’s achievable,” Rogers told supercars.com.

“Without compromising the structure of the chassis – if the engineers feel it’s not going to be right for handling we wouldn’t fix it.”

Rogers’ confirmed it was the contact with Perkins that caused the issue.

“Looks like it’s got [Perkins’] exhaust, I’d say that’s exactly what hit the side wall of the tyre. It didn’t deflate on the data, so when he’s hit the brakes with all that pressure down it’s just popped a tyre.

“It’s certainly not a Dunlop issue or anything like that.”

The #34 qualified alongside its sister car steered by Scott McLaughlin/David Wall, which led for a time and showed good speed before finishing the race fourth, just shy of the podium. It pushed McLaughlin up to fourth in the standings, ahead of Mark Winterbottom and behind the three Triple Eight cars.  

While the 500 was a shocker as a co-driver, Golding won the Dunlop Series race earlier on Sunday and sits third in the points standings.  

While Rogers was pleased with overall performance, Sandown felt like one that got away.

“Disappointment wasn’t the right word, but we probably could’ve achieved a bit more,” he said.

“I can’t say too much for #34, but the weekend as a whole, with DVS races, you’d say it’s not a bad weekend … but when you look at what’s happened probably brings it down a peg or two.”

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