Tim Blanchard and Garth Tander have traded barbs after a collision in race two at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide today.
Blanchard believes the Holden Racing Team was ultimately at fault for the crash, after releasing a lapped car #2 into traffic.
After his schedule pit stop, Tander’s car stalled in pit lane and wouldn’t refire, ending his fight in the race.
Once the team fired the Commodore up, Tander was released back out to race four laps down and while running out wide to let a pack of cars run past, he was hit by a locked-up Blanchard’s CoolDrive Commodore.
Blanchard placed blame on the 2007 champ during the telecast but swung his aim at the factory team post-race, declaring they should not have released Tander into a hive of cars when he wasn’t racing for position.
“I think it’s whoever is talking to him on the radio’s fault to be honest – I haven’t seen the footage yet so I don’t know the full circumstances, but they shouldn’t have sent him out into that situation, it didn’t give him a lot of options,” Blanchard told v8supercars.com.
“He came right out of the middle of the pack, broke a fair bit early, but kind of got out the way of the others.
“By the time I came though he happened to be sitting on the apex and I wiped off as much speed as I could – and that was it really.
“I haven’t seen the footage yet but I didn’t have a lot of options.”
Tander wasn’t impressed by the incident after an already difficult day on-track.
“I don’t know how much further off the track I was meant to be for him not to run into me,” he told v8supercars.com.
“I was obviously off the track letting the field through and he managed to find me while I was off the track. Apparently he says it’s my fault but I’m not to sure how that is.”
Tander had no issue with the team’s release and had a number of cars clear him before the hit.
“We’re not too worried about where we release the car in relation to Tim Blanchard’s race – pretty much the rest of the field managed to get past.
“So if there was a concrete wall there and he went into the corner as fast as he did he would’ve ripped his car off. He crashed into the back of my car and damaged his.
“It’s hot – maybe he just wasn’t concentrating that well.”
Tander talked through the starter motor issue that took him out of contention, though he wanted to see the data to understand it fully.
“It didn’t really stall, it coughed a bit and then the starter engaged while the engine was running. And that was it, it fried the starter motor and it was obviously very hot as well, so I think the starter motor was overheated … the boys were buzzing blue air on the starter motor and it came back to life. We lost a couple of laps.”
Blanchard’s car was back on track after the damage and will race tomorrow, before fixing it thoroughly at the workshop.