SVG not feeling heat as he chases Adelaide hat-trick
REIGNING Superloop champion Shane van Gisbergen is unmoved by outside expectations as he is chasing a hat-trick of crowns at this week's Superloop Adelaide 500.
Van Gisbergen, 29, has become the king of motorsport in South Australia. The Red Bull driver has won the past four races at the Adelaide street circuit and also won the inaugural event at The Bend.
But he dismissed suggestions he would feel the pressure of defending his throne as he landed in Adelaide this week.
"We're not being chased because everybody is on zero points," van Gisbergen said.
"Everyone's leading the championship at the moment; everyone starts from zero.
"Past history doesn't mean anything, especially with the rule changes.
"I'm no more confident than ever but I know I have all the stuff there to make it happen.
"We just have to get it right."
"We tested a couple of weeks ago and our cars weren't the best.
"But I think we learnt a lot between the two cars that we can put something together good for this week."
Van Gisbergen and Triple Eight teammate Jamie Whincup will this year have to adjust to the loss of Craig Lowndes, who has stepped down from full-time driving.
It means the stable has been reduced to two cars and van Gisbergen said it had changed the dynamics and made him and Whincup more reliant on each other.
"It will just mean a little bit less data," van Gisbergen said. "The two cars will have to work closer than ever.
"We've always worked really closely; we've just got to work even more closely to get the most out of every session."
Van Gisbergen said there next to no rivalry between him and Whincup, despite both of them starting the year among the championship fancies.
The first priority was to get the team to perform; personal glory was secondary.
"We're teammates; I don't think like that (of them as rivals)," van Gisbergen said.
"Our cars are here to be as good as they can to beat everyone else.
"You have to be as open as possible with the setups, the driving and make yourself better before you beat everybody else.
"You've got to beat everyone before you beat your teammate; you've got to work together."