Percat says puncture sparked tyre controversy

Nick Percat says it was a pre-race puncture that could see him stripped of a podium finish in Darwin due to a tyre rule breach.

Percat says puncture sparked tyre controversy

The Brad Jones Racing driver finished today's opener at Hidden Valley third on the row, however is now facing a post-race investigation for a technical breach.

The alleged breach is that his tyres were clocked under the minimum pressure of 17 psi, something that, if found guilty of, could see him stripped of his podium finish.

Percat, however, is adamant that he didn't race with tyres under the minimum pressure.

He says the culprit was a right-front that had a puncture pre-race, and the issue being flagged by Supercars led to the team hurriedly fitting a full new set on the grid.

He also reckons that set was over-pressured, hence his early stop in the race.

"The tyres I raced on didn't dip under 17 psi," Percat said. 

"We thought we had a puncture on the grid. We had to change [tyres] because [one] was going down really fast. 

"So that's what happened. Supercars came past with the sniffer and said 'we think you have an issue'. 

"I don't know how that works with the rules. It's not like I got to drive around out there with 17 psi while these guys were on 19. I think I was in the mid-20s. 

"We gained zero advantage. And it's actually good that Supercars can see when problems like that are happening so I didn't go barrelling into Turn 1 with no pressure in the tyre."

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Percat said a penalty would be a cruel outcome given how hard his team worked for the third-place finish. 

"We've been fast since we rolled out of the truck," he said. 

"We've got a few little bits and pieces on the car to try and bridge the gap to Cam [Waters], Chaz [Mostert] and Shane [van Gisbergen]. And I think we've taken a step forward there. 

"It would be a pretty shit feeling to have it taken away. We gained zero advantage, we actually hurt ourselves with what happened."

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