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WAU chasing answers to Super Soft slump

Supercars
19 Jun
Just weeks after locking out the Perth front row, WAU couldn’t crack the top 20 in Darwin
3 mins by James Pavey
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  • WAU qualifying average in Darwin was 22.5

  • Chaz Mostert stunning with P22 to P5 Saturday charge

  • WAU pinpoints Super Soft as trigger for one-lap woes

Walkinshaw Andretti United Team Principal Carl Faux says the team’s battles in Darwin qualifying were "simply not good enough,” as both Fords struggled on the Super Soft tyre.

Just weeks after locking out the Perth front row, neither Chaz Mostert or Ryan Wood could crack the top 20 in Darwin.

Mostert entered the weekend with the second best qualifying average (4.0), and hadn’t started a race outside the top 10. In Darwin, he could only manage 22nd and 20th on the grid.

It was no better for teammate Ryan Wood, who had the ninth best qualifying average (11.0), but was consigned to 24th in both Darwin qualifying sessions.

Mostert, who flagged the Super Soft challenges after Friday qualifying, spared the team’s blushes with a staggering run to fifth in Saturday’s race. However, as rivals improved overnight and mirrored WAU on strategy, he couldn’t repeat his heroics.

Faux said WAU expected the Super Soft tyre to be a “challenge” for the team, but said the one-lap performance wasn’t up to the team's normal standards.

"We knew the Super Soft tyre was going to be a challenge and we just could not get any one-lap pace out of the car,” said Faux, who suggested a rookie day for Wood could be used to help the team find answers.

"It's simply not good enough for us, from a qualifying perspective.

"Chaz had an absolutely stunning drive on Saturday when we took four new tyres, but on Sunday everyone copied us and we didn't get the same gain.

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"We're pretty happy with the race pace of the cars. We've got a rookie day with Ryan Wood so we'll keep learning with him.”

The Super Soft will be used at two more rounds, August’s Tasmania SuperSprint and September’s Sandown 500.

The next two rounds in Townsville and Sydney, however, will be run on the Soft compound, which Mostert and WAU used to great effect in Perth.

Mostert ceded 104 points to championship leader Will Brown in Darwin, with the deficit now 279 points heading to Townsville.

Master reiterated Faux’s points regarding strong race pace, but said the team can’t afford bad days amid Triple Eight’s strong form.

"Yeah, just different tyre, different place, heat and just the car just didn't quite work on it this weekend. Race car was still pretty good,” Mostert said.

"So yeah, just can’t have those days. The guys were racing in the championship, they're just not having bad days. We’ve just got to go back to the drawing board.”

WAU retained second in the teams’ standings, but is now 920 points behind Triple Eight.

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