Bathurst legend unleashes on ‘absolutely awful’ SVG

Four-time Bathurst 1000 winner Greg Murphy has lashed NASCAR-bound Shane van Gisbergen for an apparent lack of enthusiasm as his Supercars career draws to an end.

On Thursday, it was confirmed the three-time Supercars winner would leave Australia to join Trackhouse Racing in the United States.

He’ll contest a variety of categories in 2024 including select NASCAR Cup Series races, and is expected to join that championship full-time in 2025.

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That announcement came on the eve of the Sandown 500. 

At the famed Supercars event, which made its return for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, van Gisbergen only qualified 19th.

His Triple Eight Race Engineering stablemate Broc Feeney qualified third before setting the fifth fastest time in the top 10 shootout.

Speaking on Fox Sports’ coverage, Murphy laid into van Gisbergen for his attitude.

“His body language is just so negative,” said the Supercars legend, who contested more than 400 races.

“It’s bizarre. I’m struggling to understand it personally. He’s not focused. He’s given up on this championship, if you ask me. 

“That’s really sad for me and for all the fans and everybody who enjoy watching him do his trade at such a high level. 

“He’s had some incredible things happen this year. He’s got an announcement that he should be super excited about. 

“You’d think his life was coming to an end at the moment with the body language and the way he’s going about it. It doesn’t look like he wants to be in the car. 

“His performance yesterday was awful, absolutely awful. Sorry, there was no excuse because the other car is right up the front there.”

Murphy went as far as to suggest van Gisbergen’s co-driver Richie Stanaway should have been given priority in qualifying.

Murphy and Stanaway contested the Bathurst 1000 together in 2022.

Stanaway will return to Supercars full-time in 2024 with Grove Racing, and van Gisbergen was a driving force behind having him as his co-driver this year.

“They should have put Richie in the car if you ask me, and let him do the job,” Murphy continued.

“It would have looked better. Come on, it’s obvious. It’s there for everybody to see, and it shouldn’t be.”

Van Gisbergen has been vocal about his disdain for the new-for-2023-specification Gen3 cars.

Despite being designed in part by his Triple Eight Race Engineering team, the car has not been to his liking and he has not had as much success as the previous Gen2 car.

Despite that, van Gisbergen remains in contention for the title in second overall behind Erebus Motorsport’s Brodie Kostecki, a mere 137 points adrift.

“I don’t know what anyone is getting out of it at the moment,” said Murphy.

“I want to see him finish this year on a high. I want to see him finish and hold his head high.

“Don’t you want to win this race? Don’t you want to win Bathurst? He deserves to give that to that team who have given him so much success. 

“I’m struggling to understand it because I just love watching him do his trade.”

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