Macauley Jones has vowed to bounce back after his second huge crash caused by a brake failure in the space of 12 months.
The 25-year-old was involved in a scary incident that ended Practice 2 at the Beaurepaires Melbourne 400, when his Team CoolDrive Holden suffered a rear brake failure at high-speed approaching Turn 1.
That left him spearing across the gravel trap and into the tyre barriers, crushing the front-end of the car.
A devastated Jones was left to watch the afternoon’s two ARMOR ALL Qualifying sessions from the garage.
“I’m all good. I was just a bit shaken up at the time, as you would expect to be,” he told Supercars.com.
“Time slows down and you sort of brace for impact I think a little bit.
“It was very unfortunate, we were just starting the new tyre [run] as well so it would have been nice to see where we were sitting and what the balance of the car was.
“So it was pretty frustrating timing for everyone, red-flagging the session, and also for us having to repair damage.
“It looks pretty bad when you first come in and the bonnet is in half and the front bar is flat, but we’ll get it out for tomorrow – change engine and away you go.”
Jones will take part in qualifying three and four tomorrow morning, but will have to start the event’s first two races from 24th and last.
While he will have slightly fresher tyres at his disposal, he conceded the incident has put him on the back foot for the next three days.
The victim of a front brake failure in his rookie event last year in Adelaide – sparking a shocking crash – Jones said that experience will help him to reset for the rest of the Albert Park event.
“Probably the benefit of having been through this is I kind of know what it’s like, but you never want to have to relive that,” he said.
“At the end of the day, it’s business, you have got to come back and it’s the mentality you have got to have, this happens sometimes.
“You never plan on it… but we’ll get up again, that’s the main thing.”
It had otherwise been a relatively positive start to the year for Jones, who has moved forward to finish most sessions in Adelaide – plus Practice 1 in Melbourne – around the 17th mark.
“We’re a bit more prepared for this year and the pace is slowly getting there,” he said.
“I’m still trying to get my head around a few things and am working with my engineer [Julian Stannard] endlessly in Albury just trying to see what we’ve got.
“I think we’ve improved a little bit, we just need to keep getting a bit more consistent.”
Third qualifying will start at 10:10am Friday.