V8 Supercars champion Jamie Whincup admits he’s fast running out of time to stay in the title hunt this year.
Since winning the final race of the Tasmania Super Sprint event in March, Whincup has gone nine races without a victory.
Finishes of 10th, 11th, 16th and 22nd in his past four hit-outs have left the 32-year-old languishing in a lowly eighth place in the championship standings going into this weekend’s event in Townsville.
The six-time champion says it’s his worst run of form since he became the dominant driver in the category.
“I haven’t been in this much of a form slump since 2006. It’s a big deal,” Whincup told AAP.
“Qualifying back past the 20 mark, I haven’t done that since I first started.
“There’s no panic stations but it’s all pretty serious stuff.
“We do need to make some changes and make them pretty quick to give myself any chance this year.”
Whincup says he’s no closer to finding a way out of his slump, despite Red Bull Racing having won seven races at the Townsville street circuit since its introduction to the championship six years ago.
“You always like to go to a race meeting being somewhere near the front and challenge for the race wins but the last three rounds we haven’t even been close,” Whincup said.
“Our results aren’t living up to our expectation and it’s something we’re going to try and adjust in the short-term.
“I’ve got to do a better job, the engineers have to do a better job, we’ve just got to work together to get back on track.”
The Townsville 400 begins with practice on Friday followed by a 200km-race each on Saturday and Sunday.
JAMIE WHINCUP’S UNDERWHELMING V8 SUPERCARS FORM
* Hasn’t won a race in past nine starts
* Only one podium (2nd in Perth race two) in that time
* Finished outside top 10 in five of those nine races
* Only one front-row qualifying position since March
* Hasn’t secure pole position since opening two races of 2015