Slammed as “arrogant” by rival Will Davison, Holden’s James Courtney says he won’t be changing his driving style for this weekend’s V8 Supercars event in Perth.
The 2010 champion sparked a war of words with Davison during the previous event in Tasmania, with the Mercedes driver left fuming after the pair came together early in one of the two Saturday races at Symmonds Plains.
Courtney is just 19 points behind defending champion Jamie Whincup in the title standings going into this weekend’s races in Western Australia and he insists the spat with Davison has had no affect.
“It’s ruled in my favour two times. I’ll keep doing what I’m doing,” Courtney told AAP.
“I’ve got nothing to worry about.”
The Holden Racing Team driver clocked the second-fastest lap in Friday’s practice sessions to finish behind Tim Slade on the timesheets.
Courtney has never won a pole position or finished on the podium in Perth and admits that’s something he’s desperate to change this weekend.
“I haven’t done anything here. It’s just never come together for me,” he said.
“It’s a great little circuit and I enjoy coming here but the results haven’t been what they need to be here.
“Weird that I’ve never got a result here and fingers crossed that I’m able to turn it around.”
Holden’s Slade was the surprise packet on Friday, clocking a fastest lap of 56.7746 seconds to finish ahead of Courtney (56.8980) and Ford’s Mark Winterbottom (56.9948).
Despite the solid display, the Supercheap Auto Racing driver cut a frustrated figure at the end of day press conference.
Slade said the highly abrasive circuit and a limited bank of tyres for each driver across the weekend made it tough to get an accurate read from Friday’s results.
“It gets worse here year after year,” Slade said.
“On the trackwalk yesterday it looked quite abrasive and probably the worst I’ve seen it.
“When you come here with pretty flogged-out tyres to start with it doesn’t feel great to start with and they drop off pretty quick as well.”
Holden’s Craig Lowndes, aiming to become the first driver to secure a 100th V8 Supercars race win this weekend, could only manage a lowly 16th place in Friday’s practice while Whincup posted the day’s 14th-fastest lap.
“It’s very difficult to read, so we’re not exactly sure where we’re at,” Whincup said.
“We did quite a few laps on the soft tyre because that’s what Sunday’s race is all about and they degraded really fast, so we’ve got some work to do with that and we’ve got some work to do for qualifying, but that’s what it’s all about.”
The action resumes on Saturday with qualifying in the morning for the two 25-lap sprint races in the afternoon.