Bathurst 1000: Ant Pederson preview

DREAM COMES TRUE FOR ANT PEDERSEN Since he was a youngster Ant Pedersen would watch Australia's great race at Bathurst on television each year. This year will be different however, as on Sunday Pedersen will be one of the drivers who lines up...

DREAM COMES TRUE FOR ANT PEDERSEN

Since he was a youngster Ant Pedersen would watch Australia's great race at Bathurst on television each year. This year will be different however, as on Sunday Pedersen will be one of the drivers who lines up for the 2010 Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 at the famous Mount Panorama circuit in New South Wales.

"I cannot wait to get this weekend underway! I'm super excited. It seems so unreal to think I'm racing at Bathurst. As a kid growing up I used to watch the race on television and now I'm in it. I've dreamed of driving in this race so understandably I'm very excited," said Pedersen before he departed for Australia.

Pedersen, who grew up in Rotorua but is currently studying in Palmerston North, has made a rapid rise in motorsport to make it to the startline of this iconic event.

A former karting champion, Pedersen shone in the MINI Challenge and Porsche GT3 Cup classes in New Zealand before receiving an opportunity to race in the early rounds of the V8 Development Series in Australia this season. The 22-year-old impressed in his very first outing, securing a podium at the tricky Adelaide Street circuit, before going on to score a second placing in a later race at Queensland Raceway.

As a result of those performances Pedersen and young Australian Damian Assaillit received a wildcard entry to the two long distance races in the Australian V8 Supercar Championship - the L&H 500 at Phillip Island and this weekends race at Bathurst.

The duo, the youngest driver pairing in the endurance races, brought the Fujitsu Falcon, one of the oldest cars in the race, to the finish in the gruelling Phillip Island event. Pedersen had shown his talent with a fine drive in the short, solo sprint race also held at Phillip Island when he sliced through the field to finish fifteenth.

Pedersen will again share the driving duties with Assaillit at Bathurst.

"The goal will be the same as at Phillip Island - to try as hard as we can to stay on the lead lap and finish the race. If we do that it will be a good result for us. I've never raced around Bathurst before so I will use the first session or two to find my way around and then press on from there. The goal for me will again be to gain experience and quality miles in these cars and around Bathurst."

Practice begins at the 6.213 kilometre track, where the V8 Supercars reach up to 300 kilometres per hour, with three sessions on Thursday. Qualifying takes place on Friday with another practice session and the top ten shootout on Saturday. Sunday is race day with the cars set to begin the tough 1000 kilometre race at 10.30am Australian local time.

Television coverage of the race can be seen in New Zealand on TV3 from 10.00am on Sunday 10 October.

-source: Ant Pedersen

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Series Supercars
Drivers Ant Pedersen , Phillip Island