DENYER TO DRIVE WITH BARGWANNA IN HIS BEST V8 OPPORTUNITY YET One day ahead of his birthday Grant Denyer has been given the best opportunity of his V8 Supercar career with the TV star and V8 racer paired with former Bathurst winner Jason...
DENYER TO DRIVE WITH BARGWANNA IN HIS BEST V8 OPPORTUNITY YET
One day ahead of his birthday Grant Denyer has been given the best opportunity of his V8 Supercar career with the TV star and V8 racer paired with former Bathurst winner Jason Bargwanna in this year's V8 Supercar endurance events.
Denyer and Bargwanna will drive the #10 WPS Racing Falcon in the Just Car Insurance 500 at Sandown International Raceway in Melbourne this weekend after WPS/WOW Racing confirmed its driver pairings for this year's endurance events today, giving Denyer one very nice birthday surprise.
It will be the first time Denyer is paired with a full-time V8 Supercar driver in the endurance events, giving the Sydneysider his best chance yet for success at Sandown, as well as the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 at the classic Mount Panorama circuit in October.
"Driving with Jason Bargwanna in the WPS car at Sandown and Bathurst this year is an enormous opportunity," said Denyer.
"I've certainly never got a birthday present like this before!
"To drive with a former Bathurst winner and one of the most experienced drivers in the championship creates a lot of pressure but also means I have a good chance of a top result at Sandown and Bathurst.
"This is only my second crack at the endurance events, which are just about the toughest races on the V8 Supercar schedule. So I certainly have a lot to learn, but being paired with a driver like Bargs will be a massive help.
"I think even seeing how he goes about the lead-up to the race and working with the team is something I'm looking forward to soaking up and learning from.
"Last year I drove in a team's second car with another part-time driver. It was an incredible opportunity, we had a good car and we had a great result with a top 10 at Bathurst.
"But this year is something different. WPS/WOW Racing has put its trust in me to drive with Bargs, one of the team's full-time drivers and a guy who has won the biggest race there is in this country. I am going to be doing everything I can to repay their faith in me.
"The V8 Supercar endurance events are races of attrition and it's all about running to a plan and not making mistakes. If we can run a faultless race we could finish with a really strong result.
"The team is very ambitious and has a winning attitude. The guys have been developing the cars and progressing well so I think we have a good chance of doing well and getting the job done."
WPS/WOW Racing tested both its cars and all four of its drivers last Thursday at Queensland Raceway in Ipswich. In damp conditions all four drivers performed well and posted competitive lap times, leading the team to confirm the decision to split the team's full-time drivers Bargwanna and Max Wilson.
Denyer and Bargwanna will pair up in the #10 WPS Racing Falcon, while Wilson and Michael Caruso will combine to debut a brand new #8 WOW Racing Falcon at Sandown this weekend.
Bargwanna, who won Bathurst in 2000 with then team-mate Garth Tander, is confident that Denyer has what it takes to help guide the #10 WPS Racing Falcon to a good finish at Sandown and Bathurst this season.
"Grant should do a great job and I am looking forward to driving with him," said Bargwanna.
"He has got some decent seat time in the Fujitsu Series over the last couple of rounds and did well at the two test days he has had with our team.
"Grant is a smart guy and a good steerer so I think we go into Sandown with a good combination and a lot to look forward to.
"Sandown was our most competitive outing last season and it's a circuit that suits our cars.
"Last year we had some really good car speed around Sandown and with the improvement we have been showing over the course of this season I think we are in for a good chance.
"Strategy will be important and the endurance races always have that extra element of planning and strategy involved.
"WPS/WOW Racing enters this year's endurance races well prepared and well organised so I think we have the potential to get a good result come Sunday."
The Sandown 500 was a standout event for WPS/WOW Racing last season. Bargwanna qualified in an outstanding fifth position at the Melbourne venue last season and went on to finish seventh, while team-mate Wilson also qualified in the top five, starting from fourth and finishing 11th.
WPS/WOW Racing team owner and Queensland businessman Craig Gore is confident that Bargwanna, Denyer and the entire team have what it takes to earn good results in this year's V8 Supercar endurance events.
"Bargs is definitely one of the drivers to watch each year at the endurance events and Grant will certainly learn a lot driving with him this year," said Gore.
"Grant has performed well in all our testing leading up to Sandown and I know he is keen to perform well and learn as much as possible from Bargs.
"Grant has certainly earned the right to drive with one of our full-time drivers and he's a smart driver who knows what it takes to run well in these tough endurance events.
"Bargs has been improving his car with every round and was seventh at Sandown last season. Our whole crew is really excited about this event and I think both our team's cars have every chance of a good result this weekend."