Politeness led to Triple Eight team orders confusion

Triple Eight boss Roland Dane says an eagerness to be "polite" to Jamie Whincup sparked the controversy over a misconceived team orders regulation in Supercars.

Politeness led to Triple Eight team orders confusion

The Red Bull Holden squad was at the centre of confusion regarding team orders in the series in New Zealand recently, orchestrating a last-lap switch between Jamie Whincup and Shane van Gisbergen under the pretence of fuel concerns.

Team manager Mark Dutton later refused to admit the cars were actually switched for strategic reasons, which suggested that Triple Eight was trying to duck a regulation prohibiting team orders.

Supercars has since clarified that a minor tweak to that regulation means teams orders are technically now allowed, despite wide-ranging understanding in the paddock to the contrary.

Triple Eight boss Dane, however, is certain that there was no confusion over the ruling inside his garage.

He says it was definitely a team order to move Whincup over for van Gisbergen, and reasons that the peculiar behaviour in the wake of the Pukekohe race from Dutton and the team was to spare Whincup's blushes.

"We would have wanted to address that anyway," Dane told Motorsport.com when asked if the move was a team order.

"[There was no] cautiousness over the [understanding of] the rule, but cautiousness over, I believe, the point of view of the driver's pride. Not just the driver, but his engineer etcetera.

"It's polite, I suppose, to want to lessen the impact.

"We knew the word had been taken out [of the regulation] at the beginning of the year. Because the meaning was never meant to be what it was construed as before.

"Dutto is an ex race engineer, and he didn't like it when someone told him what to do. I think he was trying to be nice and polite to as many people as possible."

The clarification over the regulation from Supercars comes ahead of the title showdown between van Gisbergen and DJR Team Penske driver Scott McLaughlin in Newcastle.

McLaughlin leads van Gisbergen by just 14 points, which means swapping drivers has the potential to majorly impact the outcome of the championship.

shares
comments
Supercars clarifies team orders legality

Previous article

Supercars clarifies team orders legality

Next article

$1 million prize pool for Australian talent search

$1 million prize pool for Australian talent search
Load comments
Can DJR still be a Supercars powerhouse after Penske? Prime

Can DJR still be a Supercars powerhouse after Penske?

Roger Penske's whirlwind Australian Supercars sojourn is over. After six seasons, three drivers' titles, three teams' championships and a Bathurst 1000 crown, The Captain has sold his controlling stake in Dick Johnson Racing back to the squad and walked away from the category.

Supercars
Feb 26, 2021
Can Whincup be Triple Eight's ruthless leader? Prime

Can Whincup be Triple Eight's ruthless leader?

Supercars' most successful team of the past 15 years is set for a radical shakeup next year when Jamie Whincup retires from driving and takes over the reins at Triple Eight. But does he have what it takes to be the new Roland Dane?

Supercars
Feb 8, 2021
How a lifetime Supercars deal broke down in one year Prime

How a lifetime Supercars deal broke down in one year

David Reynolds inked what was effectively a lifetime deal with Erebus in 2019 – only to walk out a year later. What went wrong?

Supercars
Dec 18, 2020
Why Supercars now needs a new "human salt harvester" Prime

Why Supercars now needs a new "human salt harvester"

Scott McLaughlin has been a controversial figure in Supercars over the past few years but, as he heads off to a fresh challenge in IndyCar, the Australian tin-top series needs to find someone else to fill his drama-filled boots as the category enters a new era...

Supercars
Nov 3, 2020
Why 2020 isn't McLaughlin's greatest title Prime

Why 2020 isn't McLaughlin's greatest title

Scott McLaughlin was quick to describe his third Supercars title as his best yet. But even though it didn't match the dramatic backstory of his 2018 triumph, there's a good reason for him wanting to control the narrative this time around.

Supercars
Oct 2, 2020
Why a Bathurst finale is risky business for Supercars Prime

Why a Bathurst finale is risky business for Supercars

The Bathurst Grand Final may provide Supercars its greatest spectacle yet – but there's a risk it will force the series to face a hard truth.

Supercars
Sep 4, 2020
Why Scott McLaughlin must become an IndyCar driver Prime

Why Scott McLaughlin must become an IndyCar driver

Scott McLaughlin, two-time and current Supercars champion, should have been making his NTT IndyCar Series debut for Team Penske at the GP of Indianapolis, but the Covid-19 pandemic forced a rescheduling that has put the brakes on his career switch. But David Malsher-Lopez explains why the New Zealander deserves this opportunity as soon as possible.

IndyCar
Jul 4, 2020
Tickford's 10-year wait for James Courtney Prime

Tickford's 10-year wait for James Courtney

When the Supercars season resumes James Courtney will be a Tickford Racing driver – but it's not the first time the star driver has flirted with the famous Ford squad.

Supercars
May 19, 2020