Supercars SuperNight winner Shane van Gisbergen has expressed concerns over the lighting at Sydney Motorsport Park after Saturday’s race.
Starting at 7:20pm and being run under temporary lighting, the race was billed as an exciting, prime time event which would showcase the Supercars under the lights.
While a crowd of roughly 35,000 attended to watch the first race at night in Australia since 1997, van Gisbergen commented on the lack of lighting and tweaks which he thinks should be made if the event happens again.
“I think as a series, it was awesome and we put on a really good show,” he said in a press conference after the 300-kilometre race.
“There’s a lot to improve on; the lighting is simply not good enough but it was adequate.
“We came in to the lights test a few months ago and it was adequate down the far end but what we didn’t take in to account was doing the rest of the dark and then coming into the lights.
“The cars we were driving had good headlights and the headlights in these cars do nothing and we can’t do anything to them. It’s good not having it like in GT racing where you can’t tell who is behind you because the lights are too bright.
“There weren’t enough lights and I think it’s only okay because we know this track so well but if it was a night race at Tailem Bend (the next round on the calendar), it would’ve been too dark.”
As one of the sport’s showmen, van Gisbergen enjoyed the pre-race build up but had some criticism for officials who forbade him celebrating how he would’ve wanted and the length of the race.
“It (the pre-race introductions) were awesome but they wouldn’t let me do a skid in front of the grandstand for the show!
“As a driver, the driver countdown and starting the engines at the same time, apart from Jamie (Whincup had a battery issue as they left the grid), was cool.
“I think there’s a reason why we went away from it (long single driver races) 12 years ago… to be honest I was pretty bored in the middle stint. It was cool watching the strategy, Craig (Lowndes) would get ahead and then we’d catch him, at the end it still would’ve come alive.
“The format is awesome at the moment, on our normal weekends. I think we can make it exciting for sure with proper racing.”
Van Gisbergen’s win means he is now only 89 points behind championship leader McLaughlin going in to the second South Australian round of the year with The Bend making its debut on the Supercars calendar.
Image via Keith McInnes Photography