Sandown Elstrek Preview

Female racer Paul Elstrek is counting the days before clinching what she believes is the opportunity of a lifetime to drive a Ferrari F355 Challenge at the Oamps Insurance Endurance Classic on September 13. Elstrek has been recruited by the...

Female racer Paul Elstrek is counting the days before clinching what she believes is the opportunity of a lifetime to drive a Ferrari F355 Challenge at the Oamps Insurance Endurance Classic on September 13.

Elstrek has been recruited by the car's new owner Perry Spiridis to share the Italian Stallion in the GTP event scheduled prior to the V8 Supercar Tickford 500.

Previously raced at Bathurst last year by Ross Palmer and Greg Crick, the Ferrari was campaigned in two rounds of the Century Batteries Australian GT Production Car Championship this year by Chris Smith.

A chance meeting between Elstrek and the former Thundersports racer, Spiridis at Calder has resulted in the partnership being formed - a partnership that has Elstrek excited about the future.

"You really can't wipe the smile off my face at the moment because this is such an amazing opportunity," Elstrek said.

"It’s not every day you get the chance to do a major GTP endurance race, and its even rarer for that chance to be aboard a Ferrari. There is nothing more I could ask for, it really is a dream come true.

"We’ve only done a few laps so far but I do feel very much at ease with the car already.

"The car seems very driver friendly and I am confident we will be able fine tune the handling and produce a strong race package.

"We’ll get Sandown out of the way first, but we are talking about Bathurst as well. I really see this as a fantastic opportunity to further my career and hopefully it could become a stepping stone to more Ferrari drives in the future.

"I’m really greatful to Perry and his team for the opportunity." Elstrek met Spiridis while filming a segment of the recently crowned GTP Champion Domenic Beninca at Calder Park for the Through The Gears program on Foxtel.

The owner of the Italian Stallion is impressed with his female co-driver and confident of a strong showing in the OAMPS Insurance Brokers’ sponsored Sandown event.

"Paula's times in the car have been very consistent and there is not a lot between us," Spiridis said.

"There is still a lot of sorting to be done on the car but we are confident of having it right by the time we hit Sandown.

"Sandown will be a steep learning curve for our team, but we are hopeful of putting the lessons learned to good effect for races in the future."

The Sandown event will be televised live by Network Ten, prior to the V8 Supercar Tickford 500.

Every competitor entered in the Sandown event will actually receive comprehensive on-track insurance for their GTP machine for raceday from the event sponsor, OAMPS Insurance Brokers.

The OAMPS group is an innovative provider of insurance and related services to Corporations, Associations, Industry Groups and individuals throughout Australia and internationally. The only Insurance Broker listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, OAMPS has been operating for over 20 years and has over $100 Million in assets. OAMPS is a specialist insurer and focuses on the delivery of professional and personalised services to a 50,000 strong client base.

FURTHER INFORMATION: Paul Ryan, (0419) 295 285 FURTHER NEWS: http://www.gtprod.com.au E-MAIL: paulryan@camtech.net.au

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Series V8SUPERCARS