Flyer resumes title chase without record breaker
HIS all-conquering Mustang may have been destroyed in the 46G hit that rocked the Gold Coast 600 - but Scott McLaughlin has declared himself good to go.
Fresh from being given the all-clear to resume his back-to-back championship bid, McLaughlin last night revealed his intent to claim the V8 crown in Sandown next round.
A crash that destroyed his record breaking Mustang denied McLaughlin a chance to become the first driver to win the title in the third last round.
"It would have been nice to have been able to wrap up the championship,'' McLaughlin said.
"But it wasn't to be. I'm not stressed about that though, we've got plenty of time with Sandown and Newcastle still to come.''
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DJR/Team Penske boss Ryan Story confirmed McLaughlin's Bathurst winning Mustang was written off in the crash that resulted in McLaughlin being sent to hospital for concussion checks.
McLaughlin and the Mustang won an unprecedented 18 races this year before the crash ended the record breaking run.
"The damage is quite extensive,'' Story said.
"There's bends and kinks and ripples in the floor past the firewall, which is never a good sign.
"Seeing a car damaged to such an extent that it's beyond repair, it's devastating for the team.''
Having declared himself 100 per cent fit to attempt to win his second championship crown in Sandown next month, McLaughlin will be given a new car for the final two rounds of the season.
"We're very fortunate to have a brand-new chassis at the shop,'' Story said.
"And we'll build that up over the course of the next few days and race that at Sandown."
Still with a 463 point lead despite failing to race in the Gold Coast 600 finale, McLaughlin will be out to win the crown before heading to the last event of the year in Newcastle.
"Alex (Premat) and I got a podium on Saturday,'' McLaughlin said.
"And we know the Mustang is good so we will be back and ready to go for Sandown. It's going to be a big week for the team, and I'm sorry they're going to have to do that, but they are the best crew in the sport so I know the new car will be mint for Sandown.
"I'm feeling pretty good, a little bit sore but I'm now fully focused on getting a great result at Sandown."
Story spoke about his concern for McLaughlin in the moment following the crash.
"Your first thoughts go to the health of the driver,'' Story said.
"We were watching the telemetry, we weren't on [the TV] screens at the time, and on the timing he was up through the first microsector.
"Then we saw the car slowed right down, we thought he must have backed out of it in the traffic or something like that, then they cut to the screen of the car on its side.
"It's jarring when you see that happen. When you see the incident live on television or delayed like that, it's always jarring."