Supercars ace Shane van Gisbergen conquers NASCAR on debut

Defending Supercars champion Shane van Gisbergen has turn out to be the primary driver in 60 years to win of their NASCAR debut.

Van Gisbergen traded the Australian avenue circuits for downtown Chicago, chasing down Justin Haley and Chase Elliott in a memorable end to the sequence’ first avenue race.

The 34-year-old’s heroics match Johnny Rutherford – a three-time Indianapolis 500 winner, who additionally raced within the 1977 Bathurst 1000 – when he received at Daytona in 1963 on NASCAR debut.

Van Gisbergen described it as a “dream come true”.

“What an expertise, and the gang out right here. Like this was so cool and that’s what you dream of, hopefully I can come and do extra,” the New Zealander stated.

“After we had that unhealthy technique again to 18th, I began to fret a bit.

“The followers in Australia and New Zealand, the response this week and the protection has been, I can’t clarify it.

“The response and the assist I’ve bought from everybody and even over right here, how welcoming everyone seems to be, I can’t consider it.”

The race was scheduled for 100 laps however was shortened due to fading daylight after the beginning was delayed for extra 90 minutes as a consequence of historic rainfall that flooded the course.

Van Gisbergen had an opportunity to drive the No. 91 Chevrolet in Chicago as a part of Trackhouse Racing’s Undertaking 91.

The New Zealander received his first Supercars championship in 2016 and was near-unstoppable as he claimed the 2021 and 2022 titles.

Van Gisbergen’s memorable debut in NASCAR will solely gas hypothesis his days in Supercars is likely to be restricted.

His quick future within the touring automotive scene appeared to have been put to relaxation in April when a “multi-year” contract extension was introduced by Pink Bull Ampol.

However in a later interview, van Gisbergen stated he was trying ahead to “not less than yet one more yr right here, which is cool”.

He was requested to make clear whether or not the deal was solely a one-year extension and he sheepishly confirmed that was right.

-with PA