07 Feb 2019
Shane van Gisbergen, the reigning Superloop Adelaide 500 winner, is looking forward to the start of the 2019 season kicking off in Adelaide in just 3 weeks time.
Visiting the Adelaide Street Circuit, where he has held the winner's title since 2017, Shane has a lot to look forward to in 2019, including a possible three-peat if he can take out the race again.
"I'm back in V8 mode now. I had some good racing on the weekend, and I'm looking forward to the start of a new season", he told us.
"I've been in the car quite a bit over summer in New Zealand, the 12 Hour helped, and next week we'll be doing testing in the V8. So I'm getting a handle on it again and can't wait to get back here."
While van Gisbergen has a history of success here in Adelaide, it hasn't been without struggle. The New Zealand native is not a fan of the heat, which can exceed temperatures of 40 degrees in Adelaide during the Superloop Adelaide 500, meaning upwards temperatures of 60 degrees inside the cars for the drivers.
Another challenge this year will come about with the twilight racing planned for the event.
"The twilight stuff will be hard here with the sun in the eyes, but it's the same for everyone. But it's good for the fans, as it's not as hot later in the day, and that's important".
There's still plenty to look forward to ahead of the season opener here in Adelaide though, as Shane can attest to.
"It's the first race of the season. There's new liveries, new cars, not just in our class but every championship. It's pretty cool, and everyone's pretty excited for that."
"Adelaide is one of my favourite cities. The event is crazy, and the fans are always cool, so it's a great way to start the season".
Van Gisbergen and Red Bull Holden Racing team are looking for success this year, after narrowly missing out on the title in 2018 to Scott McLaughlin from the Shell V-Power Racing Team.
However, if you thought that Shane considers McLaughlin as his biggest rival, you'd be wrong.
"My biggest rival is my dad at the moment. We had heaps of racing at Hampton Downs over the summer, and he beat me again. It's amazing - he's 61 now, and I'm racing all the time, but he jumps in and goes and beats my laps. I don't know how he does it".
Looking towards the Superloop Adelaide 500, Shane has been focussed on his training, including his challenging Bathurst 12 hour last weekend, as well as time spent training in the simulators.
"It's mainly not to help with driving, but for concentrating for long periods of time. If you can concentrate for 2 or 3 hours at full focus, that really helps in training".
Apart from the big event, Shane's got his sights set on another part of the Superloop Adelaide 500 - the Sunday night after-race concert headlined by the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
"Normally I fly out the Sunday night, but I might be staying for that one!"
Shane van Gisbergen returns to Adelaide in 3 weeks for the 2019 Superloop Adelaide 500, for the opening round of the Virgin Australia Supers Championship.
The Superloop Adelaide 500 is the first event of the Supercars Championship and takes place from 28 February - 3 March 2019 at the Adelaide Street Circuit. Tickets are available here.