Motorsport: Ford Mustang to be slowed
The Ford Mustang has been tamed.
After a dominant start to the season, winning all but one race, Supercars rule makers have announced plans to clip the wings of the flying Ford. All six of the American coupes will feature smaller front undertrays and rear wing endplates for the next round in Perth next weekend.
Defending series champion Scott McLaughlin and his DJR-Team Penske team have been almost unstoppable this season, but there have also been strong performances by teammate Fabian Coulthard and Tickford Racing’s Chaz Mostert and Cameron Waters. That led rival teams to complain that the new Mustang had an aerodynamic advantage.
Unlike the locally developed Holden Commodore and Nissan Altima, the Mustang’s aerodynamic package was the work of Ford Performance’s US-based experts, led by the blue oval’s head of global motorsport, Mark Rushbrook.
All three cars were tested together prior to the start of the season in the sport’s ‘VCAT’ test with reportedly very similar results. But Supercars CEO Sean Seamer said it was important that the rule makers responded to ensure even competition between the three brands.
“The Supercars Technical department has worked through the data available and requested these changes from homologating team DJR Team Penske and Ford Performance in a transparent manner,” Seamer explained.
“The Mustang is a world class race car and we respect the work that has gone in to developing the package. Despite passing VCAT any incoming car needs to meet the incumbents.”
Rushbrook said the company accepted the changes and DJR-Team Penske and Tickford Racing will now alter the front and rear aerodynamics as quickly as possible in order to be prepared for the race in Perth.
“We will make these changes ahead of the next round so we can quickly understand the [effect] they’ll have on Mustang to give us the best chance of maintaining our pace,” Rushbrook said. “Mustang is run by some of the best teams in the series and that’s not technical parity, it is the sporting performance of the teams that race the car.”
He did indicate that he would be disappointed by any further changes later this season if the Mustang continues its race winning form.
“Our car was signed off and homologated by Supercars ahead of the 2019 season, however whilst we understand these changes are in the interest of the sport, we expect to run the rest of the season on track unchanged from this specification,” he said.