Bathurst 12H: Daniel Erickson qualifying report

DANIEL ERICKSON COULD STILL BE A CONTENDER IN WET BATHURST 12-HOUR RACE Forecast rain is set to make tomorrow's Bathurst 12-Hour race an even bigger challenge for Daniel Erickson -- but a wet track won't necessarily be a disadvantage for the BMW...

DANIEL ERICKSON COULD STILL BE A CONTENDER IN WET BATHURST 12-HOUR RACE

Forecast rain is set to make tomorrow's Bathurst 12-Hour race an even bigger challenge for Daniel Erickson -- but a wet track won't necessarily be a disadvantage for the BMW 335i he'll be co-driving.

The Rondo Building Services entry that Erickson is sharing with car owner Barry Morcom and Historic racer Paul Stubber will start from 11th grid position in the 42-car field after today's qualifying session.

It sits second in Class B (high-performance rear-wheel-drive cars), behind the sister BMW 335i of V8 Supercar aces John Bowe and Paul Morris and Eastern Creek Karting Raceway director Garry Holt.

Both BMWs eclipsed their more powerful V8 HSV and FPV Class B rivals during the hour-long session.

Having failed to match the leading Class A (high-performance all-wheel-drive) Mitsubishi Evos for pace in the dry, the two BMW teams are counting on their cars' reliability and ability to race at near-qualifying speed to move up the leader board as the Bathurst marathon grinds on.

But the German thoroughbreds could still be outright contenders even if the bitumen becomes slippery.

Their superior driveability, due to their larger cubic capacity, combined with dual turbochargers that smooth out the transition from low to high-boost, could counter the Evos' inherent traction advantage.

"The car is quite easy to drive," Daniel Erickson commented after his practice run. "The engine pulls more smoothly than an Evo's."

The BMW's bigger fuel tank - 63 litres to the Evo's 55 -- also allows a more flexible refuelling strategy.

Either way, the Bathurst 12-hour will be a tough test of driver and car -- and a perfect initiation for Daniel Erickson into the world of production touring car endurance racing.

-source: daniel erickson

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Series CAMS
Drivers Paul Morris , John Bowe , Paul Stubber , Garry Holt , Barry Morcom , Daniel Erickson