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McLAUGHLIN WON’T LET BATHURST TEMPTATION BLUR INDYCAR VISION


Published at 9/15/2022

Scott McLaughlin has conceded that a Bathurst 1000 return would cause a set-back for his IndyCar aspirations, with his focus set on driving for Team Penske in America.

The 2021 Indianapolis 500 and IndyCar rookie of the year driver, took the #3 Penske car to fourth place in this year’s standings, as well as taking out three victories in the process. 

Although he doesn’t rule out again competing at ‘The Great Race’ in the future, IndyCar remains his sole focus due to the incompatibilities of the two driving styles.

Speaking on the Pit Lane podcast, the three-time Supercars champion gave an insight into his future aspirations. 

“Ultimately, the decision I made to not race Bathurst was just the bad habits I have to get rid of, coming from a Supercar to an Indy car,” said the Kiwi superstar.

“I sort of don’t want to build them back up again. I’ve really got to focus if I want to achieve what I want to achieve here in IndyCar. 

“Not to say that I won’t ever come back and race the race, it’s just this next little bit in my career I just want to focus on what I’m doing. 

“Hopefully, one day, for sure, we’ll come back there and have a race, because it is my favourite track in the world.”

McLaughlin takes the chequered flag at the 2019 Bathurst 1000 in front of Shane van Gisbergen

At his home in North Carolina, where the Penske IndyCar team is based, McLaughlin has a map of the Bathurst circuit on the wall where he won the 2019 running with co-driver Alexandre Prémat and DJR Team Penske. 

Next to the Bathurst map, is another of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, a venue which he hopes to succeed at next year.

“I’ve got that one and Indianapolis Motor Speedway next to it…I guess I’ve succeeded at one track, and that’s my next goal – the Indy 500.”

No driver has won both events, with McLaughlin’s two attempt’s at the 500 yeilding a P20 in 2021, and a P28 in this years running. The Indy 500 in 2016 was won by American Alexander Rossi, who then crossed the ocean in 2019 to have a crack at Bathurst with WAU and James Hinchcliffe, where they finished in two laps down McLaughlin’s dominant #17 Mustang.

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