V8SDS: Decina Racing Wakefield preview

Luff looking forward to Wakefield challenge After an action packed opening round of the 2005 HPDC V8 Supercar Series Decina Racing is looking for a stronger weekend at Goulburn's Wakefield Park to promote driver Warren Luff up the Championship...

Luff looking forward to Wakefield challenge

After an action packed opening round of the 2005 HPDC V8 Supercar Series Decina Racing is looking for a stronger weekend at Goulburn's Wakefield Park to promote driver Warren Luff up the Championship table.

The 2004 V8 Supercar Rookie of the Year, Luff had race pace during the first round at Adelaide's street circuit, but was severely hampered when a freakish run of punctured tyres affected both his races.

While philosophical at the time, Paul Cruickshank Racing has worked tirelessly over the long break between rounds to further prepare the car for Wakefield Park, a circuit Luff has enjoyed success at in the past.

It is also a track that he still holds lap records for in two categories. The first hailing back to 2000 when he clocked a 1:10.0956 in the Mitsubishi Mirage Series and the second during the 2002 V8 BRUtes series when he took his Ford AU II XR8 around in 1:11.2143.

After a brief period away from the track, Luff enjoyed being back behind the wheel of the Decina Ford during a successful test at Queensland Raceway last week and is also looking forward to going racing at Wakefield with the team more confident in the overall set up of the car.

"It was really good day. We had a very positive test and made some good gains with the car and if we can carry that forward to Wakefield Park we should be looking pretty good," said Luff.

"I have always really enjoyed it down there at Wakefield Park, I have always had success there in other categories, so I'm looking forward to repeating that in the development series.

"It's a bit of a kick seeing those times still standing for the Mirage series and in the BRutes. Those Mirages were Japanese racing spec and really flew around the track, but I can tell you that I will be aiming for much lower times this coming weekend in the Decina Falcon."

Luff said that while there was "nothing revolutionary" about the changes made during the test, it is an improvement on the limited time the team had with the car before Adelaide.

"(Last time) We did just a few things to refine the car as we only got the car very late before Adelaide," said Luff.

"So although we had a test before the last event, this latest hit out was really the first serious test in terms of making some changes and then seeing how the car responded. So from that angle it was probably more of a learning day than anything else this time around."

Luff said he is also looking forward to making inroads into the opposition points lead at Wakefield and is to the challenge of the reverse grid format, something he didn't get to experience in 2004.

"The reverse grid always adds an exciting element for the fans and from a driver's perspective adds a dimension and another challenge as you have to fight your way to the front," said Luff.

"But you can't try too hard because it is very easy in those situations to get tangled up with someone else, so you have to pick and choose your moments to get past people and be able to stay on track.

"We are going there for the win, but the most important thing for us is to come away from there with a good haul of points. Obviously Adelaide wasn't too kind to us and we are out to make amends for the disappointment."

PCR team principal Paul Cruickshank and Decina Racing team boss Jim Morton have expressed confidence in the Decina BA Falcon for Wakefield after the successful test, particularly with the significant improvements made in the car's handling.

"It was a really productive test for us and it was certainly a lot more beneficial than our first test day," said Cruickshank.

"We worked through a program and made some gains and we are consistently quite a bit quicker than we were at out first test with virtually the same conditions and tyres."

Morton reiterated the importance of finding better balance in the car.

"We had a very successful test the other day where we tried quite a few different things. We got a fairly good handle on what we need to run adjustment wise with the extra ballast in the car," said Morton.

"As well as finding extra pace we are now confident that we have a better idea of the best way to set up the car."

Wakefield Park is a 2.2km racing circuit and is located 2 hours drive from Sydney and about 1 hour from Canberra

Round 2 of the 2005 HPDC V8 Supercar Series, which will be held on May 14-15 at Wakefield Park, near Goulburn.

-dr-

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Series CAMS
Drivers Warren Luff , Paul Cruickshank