Whincup: "I expect more from myself than that"

  • Repco Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 10/10/2014
  • By V8 Supercars

It will need to be an epic fightback for Jamie Whincup to be victorious at the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 after an uncharacteristic crash at The Cutting (turn four) in today's qualifying session.

The Red Bull racer admitted it was his mistake - he knew he was going in, even before he hit the wall.

Now the Championship leader will start from last on the grid in what will need to be an extraordinary drive for a good result at Mount Panorama.

Whincup spoke to v8supercars.com.au about the incident, the car and what he and the team will do from here.

"Disappointing," Whincup began when asked to talk through the incident.

"We had a tough day yesterday but were turning it back on track this morning with our pace.

"We feel like we're really back on track but I've got to put my hand up - driver error.

"I've been a little bit slow through The Cutting all weekend so I was just trying to find the extra time and push a bit harder. Lost the rear end through the kink and ended up hitting the wall.

"Unfortunately I've had experience going into that wall, there's a gate into someone's house that doesn't mend up that well, so you end up hitting the gate, and that's what did most of the damage to the front end on the car.

"After having a good look at it, it was nowhere near as bad as I would've thought. I thought there could be chassis damage, but to be honest, touch wood, it's all fairly well bolt on stuff at the moment. The only big cost is pride for the biggest one - and we've go to start from the back for the race.

"It did feel like a big hit. I heard a big crunch in the front end, I haven't' had a big hit for a while so maybe I'm getting soft - it felt big, but looking at the car it's not as big as I first made out ... just disappointed.

"I was already disappointed before I hit the wall - 'I'm going in here, what an idiot, what am I doing'. I shouldn't - this is amateur stuff,
I expect more of myself from that. Anyway it's happened now I've got to move on, get over it and reset tonight, and maximise practice six to try to get a good race car."

Though Whincup's engineer David Cauchi said the car was practically undriveable yesterday, they had made headway this morning, and were third in the day's final practice this morning.

"We haven't had a good run, but, gee, I feel like we did an awesome job overnight and the car was on the pace this morning.

"I was third quickest, genuinely third quickest, so we've come a long way - sort of just getting back on track and unfortunately the driver let his end of the bargain down and went into the fence.

"Hey, that's the way it goes. We're cool. It's what you do now that's the most important thing. It's how teams and people react when the chips are down, so we'll see this as a challenge to try and get back up again."

Whincup wasn't making any declarations about a fightback, or whether it's even possible to win the race from the back row come Sunday.

"I won't go making any big statements like that. We'll try and let the driving and our performance do the talking.

"It's going to be extremely difficult, but I've got so much confidence in the crew."

Lockwood Racing's Fabian Coulthard topped the session, with an amazing 2min05.6080.

Qualifying has set the grid for all those outside the top 10, with the ARMOR ALL Top 10 Shootout to determine those final positions tomorrow.

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