Supercars star Fabian Coulthard says his future with Shell V-Power Racing won’t be known until billionaire owner Roger Penske decides whether or not to continue his support of the Championship-winning team.
Coulthard is currently competing in his fifth season with DJR Team Penske and told Fox Sports’ Loud Pedal Podcasthe has ‘no idea’ whether he’ll be offered a new contract.
“We’re waiting for a decision to be made from America on what’s going to happen and transpire for the future so I won’t know until after Bathurst,” Coulthard said.
“All I can do is the best job I can, focus on what I can control, and we’ll worry about the rest later.”
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The 35-year-old says he wants to remain with the team but discussions with management are yet to take place.
“Absolutely, I have no intentions of going elsewhere. I’m obviously continuing life and racing as if the team is going to carry on and I’m being part of it,” Coulthard said.
“I’ve hardly been home to talk to those sort of people (management) to get a bit of a feel, get an indication of what’s going to happen. I guess it’s just a simple ‘let’s wait and see, time will tell’.”
Coulthard says Penske’s decision on the future of his partnership with Dick Johnson Racing impacts everyone’s position within the team.
“The whole thing with COVID and stuff like that is Roger, and everyone at Penske, have a race team here in Australia and with the current circumstances, with them not really having the ability to come and see the race team, is it a logical thing for them?” Coulthard said.
“I’m sure they’re evaluating a lot of things. Obviously we’ve been very successful as a race team; winning championships, drivers championships, teams championships and things like that so it’s been a great thing for Roger to promote his businesses here in Australia and in New Zealand so hopefully that can continue.”
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The American motorsport icon could go out on a high with Scott McLaughlin able to complete a rare hat-trick of Supercars championships at The Bend Motorsport Park this weekend.
The New Zealander only needs to finish the round 300 points ahead of seven-time champion Jamie Whincup to win the title. He currently leads his arch rival by 215 points.
Coulthard says he’ll do whatever it takes to help his teammate triumph.
“(The directive) Comes from the top. Whatever I’m asked to do I’ll do,” Coulthard said.
“We’ve all got bosses, we all answer to somebody, so if the call comes through and it gets made then you do what you’re told.”
The 13-time race winner faced a similar situation last year during the closing stages of the controversial Bathurst 1000 when he backed the pack up behind the safety car, allowing McLaughlin and Red Bull Holden Racing Team rival Craig Lowndes to gap the field. McLaughlin went on to win the race.
The team were later penalised for breaching the Obligation of Fairness rule and fined $250,000 while Coulthard copped intense criticism and death threats. He returns to the scene of the crime in three weeks.
“I’ve been living with it every day since,” Coulthard said.
“To go back to Bathurst obviously it’s going to be brought up, you know we’re still talking about my Bathurst crash from 2010 that’s ten years later as well, so it’s not going to come as a surprise.”
The father of two has tried to remove reminders of the incident from his life.
“I’ve blocked that many people off social media that keep bringing it up – Twitter, Instagram – if you want to be blocked mention that, so I’m dwindling in numbers,” Coulthard said.
“I can’t dwell on the past, we have to look forward to the future. What’s been done has been done. The team’s paid the price for that and we just need to move on and move forward.”
Coulthard is currently sixth in the championship.