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Brake failure behind van Gisbergen test crash

Supercars
07 Sep
Van Gisbergen crashed heavily early in pre-enduro testing at Queensland Raceway
3 mins by James Pavey, Pics by Matthew Paul Photography
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  • #97 Camaro pitched off at high speed early in enduro test

  • Van Gisbergen unscathed, extricated out of passenger side door

  • Triple Eight returns car to track after four-hour trackside rebuild

Triple Eight Race Engineering has completed a four-hour trackside rebuild of the #97 Red Bull Ampol Camaro after brake failure sent Shane van Gisbergen into a high-speed accident during testing.

Van Gisbergen crashed heavily early in pre-enduro testing at Queensland Raceway, with the reigning champion spinning out at Turn 6.

The incident, captured in a sequence of images by photographer Matthew Paul, ended in the #97 Chevrolet firing head on into the barriers at the Ipswich venue’s final corner.

Van Gisbergen extricated himself from the wreckage via the passenger side door, and stood alongside team members as the car was recovered.

“Unfortunately Shane had a brake failure,” co-driver Richie Stanaway told Supercars.com.

“The main thing is he is okay, because he had a pretty big impact. Disappointing test for us, because we had a lot on the programme for today. I didn’t get any laps this morning before the incident.

“Not an ideal lead-in to Sandown — but that’s the positive thing about the team giving me a lot of running this year.

Triple Eight gets to work on damaged Camaro

“I feel comfortable in the car, but it would've been nice to do a few laps so close to Sandown."

In quotes provided to Supercars.com, Triple Eight Team Manager Mark Dutton admitted his team thought the #97 was over an out for Tuesday before inspection.

When asked if the car was straightforward to diagnose, Dutton said: “Yes and no.

"With how hard he went in, we thought the car was done for the day.

"We put it in the truck, A) because we thought it was done, B) because of the huge crowd, and C) actually so we could use the truck as a bit of a hoist to have it up at the top level and then we all went underneath and inspected the chassis to see how far back the damage went.

"We were pleasantly surprised when it was all the sacrificial components that had taken the brunt of it.

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"The chassis looked perfect, even the front clip looked fine, it was just all of the rail extensions and bodywork, radiators and all that sort of stuff.”

Dutton explained that a knocked fitting had been identified as the cause of the crash, saying: "There’s always reason to be concerned when you have that, but we could identify it and try to isolate exactly what the cause was.

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"We had been doing some brake changes in the garage and the most logical thing is that the fitting has been knocked… because it’s a 90-degree fitting, if you knock it in an anti-clockwise direction, you can crack it off effectively.

"That’s what it appears to be, because all of those fittings were checked this morning by the guys.

"They were fine first thing and the we were just running through our sequence, doing some of the brake change and it looks like it has possibly copped a bit of a knock."

The van Gisbergen crash was one of a number of incidents across testing at Queensland Raceway and Winton Motor Raceway, with all teams rolling through pre-enduro programmes.

Just after the van Gisbergen incident, a wheel parted company from the #35 Truck Assist Camaro with Cameron Hill at the wheel.

Over at Winton, Team 18 co-driver Michael Caruso ran off at Turn 3 as rain descended on the Benalla circuit. Caruso managed to return to #18 DEWALT Camaro — which he is sharing with Mark Winterbottom — to the track shortly afterwards.

Conditions at Winton were a far cry to those at Queensland Raceway, which is currently bathed in sunshine. Brad Jones Racing, Team 18 and Blanchard Racing Team would later abandon their test days, and will return to Winton on Wednesday.

Erebus Motorsport, Tickford Racing, Walkinshaw Andretti United and Penrite Racing are also testing at Winton, along with a number of Dunlop Super2 Series teams.

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