Scott McLaughlin will be 'extra aggressive' on home soil
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Expect to see Kiwi Supercars driver Scott McLaughlin throw everything at winning this weekend at the ITM Auckland SuperSprint in Pukekohe.
The Shell V-Power Racing driver lies third in the championship standings heading into the penultimate round of the championship and he knows he needs to force the issue if he is to win a maiden title.
While slow and steady approach could see him remain in contention heading into the final round McLaughlin feels, as the chasing driver, he needs to take the fight to series leader Jamie Whincup.
"For me, extra aggressive," McLaughlin told The Herald of his planned approach.
"The person that is going to win the championship is going to win races. Our win on Sunday at the Gold Coast was massive. It really got us back into the game.
"For me it is just attack. It puts me in the right mindset doing what I love to do trying to drive as fast as I can and I think that what has got us into this position now."
McLaughlin has arguably been the dominant driver this year and carried a healthy advantage in the championship standings into last month's Bathurst 1000. But a shocking race on the mountain, where his car's engine failed, left the Kiwi having to make up ground in the final events of the season.
"If we had finished Bathurst in any position we would be a fair way ahead but that is what happens in motorsport - you just have to get on with it," the 24-year-old said.
"I feel I have got the pace to win it and it is just about executing it right and unfortunately at Bathurst we didn't execute it right. You have got to have a perfect day and we didn't.
"We have to work on it as a team and we have. What we did at Gold Coast - we turned a 13th place, which is an average place for us, into a race win and that is exactly what you have to do to win championships."
McLaughlin became the youngest ever Supercars race winner at Pukekohe Park Raceway in 2013 and is fired up to shine in front of friends and family.
"It is always good coming back here," he said. "Obviously since 2013 having that first win was a very special day - I haven't been able to win here since then so I want to try and change that this weekend."
Man to beat: Shane van Gisbergen - back on 2016 tyres he should be hard to beat having dominated the event last year.
Dark Horse: He's hardly a dark horse given he's fourth in the championship but Chaz Mostert is on a role and is not as widely-backed as some of the others in the title fight.
Pressure on: Mark Winterbottom - Teammate Mostert is going well, so too Cam Waters and Richie Stanaway is waiting in the wings for a fulltime gig in 2018. Frosty needs a result.