Whincup's New One Year Deal

  • Repco Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 19/02/2014
  • By V8 Supercars

Five time and defending V8 Supercars Champion Jamie Whincup has confirmed he expects to soon sign a new deal with Triple Eight Race Engineering to drive a Red Bull Racing Australia Holden Commodore VF.

But in a shock move it will only be for a single extra year covering 2015.

The extension means his deal will expire at the same time as teammate Craig Lowndes and when Triple Eight’s Red Bull sponsorship is due for renewal. Holden’s multi-sponsorship is also thought to be up at the same time.

It will also mean Whincup races for Triple Eight for a minimum 10 seasons, having started when it was Team Betta in 2006. Since then he has collected five driver’s titles and four Bathurst 1000 wins as well as contributed to five teams Championships.

Whincup hopes to have his deal sorted out with Triple Eight Race Engineering boss Roland Dane before the season-opening Clipsal 500 in Adelaide on February 27 to March 2.

“There are still some hurdles, but personally I would like to have it all sorted before Adelaide,” he told v8supercars.com.au.

Whincup’s deals with Triple Eight have traditionally been sorted out more than 12 months before they expire and have been multi-year arrangements.

He said there were a number of reasons why he had elected to extend his contract with RBRA for only a single further season.

“The sport is changing so much, my best is still yet to come, so one year is good,” Whincup said.

“It guarantees me at Red Bull Racing for 2015. One year is a long time, I don’t plan too far ahead.

“I have done three year deals in the past, but not when the category is changing so dramatically for everyone.

“There are new manufacturers, there are all sorts of things. It’s all happening, which is great for the sport.

“There are new drivers coming through, maybe Red Bull want a new young bloke in 2016 so they don’t want to sign us up for too long," the 31-year old said, his tongue planted firmly in his cheek.

Whincup agreed signing for a single year allowed him to spend 2014 and 2015 assessing where the next significant move in his career might be.

But he would not respond to suggestions that the one year contract hinted he was looking beyond RBRA and even potentially going overseas.

“You are putting words in my mouth now,” he said.

But he did confirm his interest in racing selected events outside V8 Supercars, no doubt having noted Lowndes’ recent win in the Bathurst 12-Hour and plan to go to Le Mans.

“I’d love to do some one-off events,” he said. “I don’t want to interrupt my V8 campaign, but if I can do some one-offs in the middle of the year then happy days because I do need experience in other cars.”

This time round it’s understood there has been significant negotiation between Whincup and Dane over remuneration in a period when team owners have been tightening their financial belts.

 “We are still working on the contract, there are just a few little odds and ends, mainly with the rules of the category,” Whincup said.

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