V8 SUPERCAR EXPECTATIONS CHANGED FOR TIM SLADE AS DEXION RACING HEADS TO WAKEFIELD PARK Just One race meeting behind the wheel of his Dexion Racing Ford Falcon has changed Tim Slade's outlook on racing in the Fujitsu V8 Supercar Championship ...
V8 SUPERCAR EXPECTATIONS CHANGED FOR TIM SLADE AS DEXION RACING HEADS TO WAKEFIELD PARK
Just One race meeting behind the wheel of his Dexion Racing Ford Falcon has changed Tim Slade's outlook on racing in the Fujitsu V8 Supercar Championship Series.
Before the Clipsal 500 season opener in Adelaide, Slade was focussing solely on gaining experience in what was his first ever race meeting behind the wheel of a V8 Supercar -- after just a few laps in pre-season testing to adapt to his new 1400kg, 600hp ride.
The 2006 Australian Formula Ford Championship runner-up was one of the quiet achievers of the opening Fujitsu Series round, qualifying 8th and racing inside the top five in race one, before being turned around on the final lap by another competitor, eventually finishing 10th.
The South Australian then rebounded to finish a strong seventh in the final race to secure sixth overall for the round.
Since his strong debut Slade, 21, has re-assessed his goals for the season ahead and now believes that better results aren't just possible -- they are almost a certainty.
That ambition will be put to the test when the Dexion racing team lines up at Wakefield Park in New South Wales for the second Fujitsu championship round, this weekend.
"After one race meeting I now know a lot more about what to expect out of racing a V8 Supercar," Slade said today.
"My expectations are so much higher now than they were before the Clipsal 500. We ran sixth or seventh for most of the weekend in Adelaide and I know that there is more to come from the car and especially from me.
"I don't think I was getting the most out of myself in Adelaide, which all comes down to experience and laps in the car.
"I think Wakefield Park will be a better platform to showcase what I think we can achieve this year." He said.
Tim has twice raced at the tricky Wakefield Park circuit, once each in Formula Ford and Formula 3 open wheelers.
He said that the layout was conducive to attacking -- especially after racing at the concrete-lined Clipsal circuit in Adelaide.
"I think I'll be able to have a bit more of a go at Wakefield Park because there is room to run off the circuit without hitting a concrete wall!
"Wakefield is a track where it's easier to be confident with the car and push as hard as you can. It's a bumpy circuit and there are a couple of slower corners so power down will be important, but I think that the car is capable of handling that based on our performance in round one.
"I'm looking forward to getting out there and having a bit more of a go." He said.
Tim said that placing his Dexion Racing BA Falcon high on the grid would be an important first step in setting up a competitive weekend at the 2.2km circuit an hour north west of Canberra.
"Even by splitting the field in two, it will still be hard to get a clear lap in Qualifying," he said.
"It's a hard track to overtake on so Qualifying will be crucial. If we start strongly then I think a Top Five finish is a more than reasonable expectation for the weekend.
"I'm really looking forward to it." Slade said.
The team has a proven record at Wakefield Park, Tony Evangelou having finished an excellent third place in the reverse-grid race in last year's round.
The Dexion Racing Falcon currently sits sixth in the Fujitsu V8 Supercar championship on 28 Points heading into this weekends' round at Wakefield Park Raceway in Goulburn.
Practice and Qualifying will be held on Saturday, March 31st, with three races (2 x 17 laps and 1 x 30) held on Sunday, April 1.