Whincup, Cauchi split amid Triple Eight engineering shuffle

The seven-year, title-winning partnership between Jamie Whincup and David Cauchi is over, courtesy of an engineering shake-up at Triple Eight.

The powerhouse squad confirmed today that both its drivers will work with fresh faces for the 2021 season.

Cauchi will be moved over to Shane van Gisbergen’s #97 car in the wake of Grant McPherson’s defection to Walkinshaw Andretti United, while new recruit Wes McDougall will take over Whincup’s #88 entry.

The shake-up brings a seven-year partnership between Whincup and Cauchi, which yielded titles in 2014 and 2017, to an end.

“Although I won’t be directly working with Cauchi this year, we’re all really excited to have Wes join the team,” said Whincup.

“Wes and I were rivals back in Formula Ford in 2002 – him engineering and me driving – and we’ve had a similar progress through the sport.

“As we all work as a team at Red Bull Ampol Racing, both engineers will work on both cars, so Cauchi and I will continue to work closely throughout 2021 and beyond, although I’ve really enjoyed the last seven years working directly together.

“While I’d love to still be working with Cauchi, sometimes change is as good as a holiday, and I’m sure that’s the same case for him now working with SVG.

“I’m hoping being the elder driver in the team that I can help guide Wes in his new role – although he has a lot of experience – and make sure he’s comfortable in the engineering team.”

McDougall arrives with a wealth of Supercars experience, following lengthy stints at Stone Brothers Racing/Erebus Motorsport and Matt Stone Racing.

“I’m incredibly excited to join Red Bull Ampol Racing in 2021, and in particular to engineer Jamie,” he said.

“To be able to work with an established, professional and fast driver such as Jamie is an awesome opportunity, and I plan to help him and the team continue their winning ways.”

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