Gold Coast only focus for series leader Shane Van Gisbergen
Thursday 20 Oct 2016 8:32 a.m.
Shane Van Gisbergen (Photosport)
His eyes are firmly on the prize.
But it's not a maiden Supercars championship title that series leader Shane van Gisbergen has in his sights ahead of this weekend's Gold Coast 600.
Flying Kiwi van Gisbergen is in the box seat for the 2016 drivers' crown after emerging from a controversial Bathurst 1000 with his series championship lead intact.
However, the Holden star insists he only has one thing on his mind this week - the Pirtek Cup for best endurance driver.
The Pirtek Cup will be decided after the third and final endurance round - the Gold Coast 600.
Van Gisbergen and co-driver Alex Premat are just six points behind Pirtek Cup leaders Will Davison and Jon Webb.
"We've got to keep the momentum going," van Gisbergen said on Wednesday.
"The endurance season is up for grabs and that's what we are pushing for this weekend."
Now in its fourth year, the Pirtek Cup is growing in stature among the drivers, van Gisbergen says.
"Definitely. And the endurance section of the year is the most important part," he said.
"It sets you up for the run home and whether you are in contention or not.
"I never think about the championship until after this round.
"We will get this weekend out of the way and then see how we stack up."
Van Gisbergen leads the series with 2524 points, ahead of Holden teammate Jamie Whincup (2385) and Craig Lowndes (2205) after a controversial Bathurst 1000.
Whincup crossed the line first but was relegated to 11th due to a time penalty for a late incident.
It helped van Gisbergen finish second behind Holden's Will Davison and boost his series lead.
But van Gisbergen said he would not dare to dream of improving on his 2014 second place and claiming a maiden Supercars title while at the "crazy" Gold Coast street circuit.
"There's always carnage here," van Gisbergen said.
"The key is not get involved in stupid battles early."