Andretti considering Bathurst wildcard for IndyCar stars

Michael Andretti has confirmed that the Walkinshaw Andretti United outfit is contemplating a wildcard entry for the Bathurst 1000, likely to include bringing IndyCar drivers out from the US.

Andretti considering Bathurst wildcard for IndyCar stars
Scott Pye, Walkinshaw Andretti United Holden
 Scott Pye, Walkinshaw Racing, James Courtney, Walkinshaw Racing
Marco Andretti, Herta - Andretti Autosport Honda
Michael Andretti, Andretti Autosport, Ryan Walkinshaw, Walkinshaw Racing
James Courtney, Walkinshaw Andretti United
Michael Andretti, Andretti Autosport
James Courtney, Walkinshaw Racing
Scott Speed
 James Courtney, Walkinshaw Racing
James Courtney, Walkinshaw Racing

In Australia for the opening round of the Supercars season in Adelaide, Andretti has opened up on plans to run an additional WAU entry at The Great Race in the future – with a focus on bringing drivers from the IndyCar and Global Rallycross programmes to Mount Panorama.

The sticking point, he says, is funding.

"I’d love to do [a wildcard], we’re still trying to get funding for it," he said.

"I’d love to run my IndyCar guys, they’re begging me to do it. We just haven’t been able to raise the sponsorship yet, but working on it.

"Marco [Andretti] would love to do it, Scott Speed’s, like, begging me to do it – so we’ll see."

While not directly related to the current Bathurst wildcard discussions, Andretti refused to dismiss the idea of part WAU owner Zak Brown convincing Formula 1 megastar Fernando Alonso of having a crack in one of the team's Supercars at some point.

"If [Zak] threw it at him, Fernando would probably want to do it," he added.

"I mean, he’s a racer, he wants to drive everything, which is really cool.

"Who knows? I mean, three, four, five years down the road, it’s a possibility for sure."

New manufacturers 'interested' in Supercars

Andretti also confirmed that there has been some interest from new manufacturers in the WAU programme.

A renewed push to bring a new make into the sport has been on the team's agenda2 since the announcement of the deal last year, with the involvement of the Andretti creating links to the likes of Honda, Volkswagen, and BMW.

While speaking about the future of the team's technical make-up, and whether or not it might make the switch to the twin-turbo GM V6 engine that's in the works, Andretti admitted that a lot of that will depend on what brand the team is running beyond the end of this season.

"Are we going to be with Commodore? I don’t know," he said when asked about the V6 engine.

"We’re hoping to be, but we could maybe be with a different manufacturer, so we’re more focused on right now, and then if we get another manufacturer or if it was with Holden then we’ll worry about all that."

He added that discussions with other manufacturers have already taken place.

"We’ve floated it out there… there’s a few that are a little interested in it but they need to look at it more," he said.

"I think they’ve got to come down and experience it. I think a lot of them don’t understand it because part of the problem is it’s a small market down here so they think it’s a big investment for being in a small market.

"So it’s trying to convince them that, ‘okay, it’s a small market, but this is a major series, it’s one of the major series in the whole country' – so there’s a huge following and there could still be a lot of value for somebody to come in and do it."

shares
comments
Crashed Whincup Holden set for overnight repair

Previous article

Crashed Whincup Holden set for overnight repair

Next article

Crashed Whincup car ready after 4am repair job

Crashed Whincup car ready after 4am repair job
Load comments
How taming his temper shaped Supercars' slow-burn star Prime

How taming his temper shaped Supercars' slow-burn star

His decision to leave Brad Jones Racing was the biggest shock of the Australian Supercars silly season so far. But for Nick Percat, it comes as the culmination of a personal journey that has made him into one of the most rounded drivers in the series, now in search of a seat that can make him a champion

Supercars
Sep 17, 2021
Why replacing Supercars' GOAT with a teenager is worth the risk for T8 Prime

Why replacing Supercars' GOAT with a teenager is worth the risk for T8

On the face of it, picking an 18-year-old rookie to replace arguably the greatest Supercars driver of all time is a risky move. But as Jamie Whincup takes up a team principal role and hands his car to Broc Feeney, it's one that he is confident will be rewarded in the fullness of time - time which wasn't afforded to Whincup in his early days

Supercars
Sep 1, 2021
How Randle went from fighting cancer to battling for Supercars contention Prime

How Randle went from fighting cancer to battling for Supercars contention

After his fledgling career was paused by a battle with testicular cancer, Thomas Randle then had to wrestle with finding a drive in Supercars after he got the all-clear. It's been a long road for the Melbourne native but, after two lengthy battles, he's finally got a full-time drive to look forward to

Supercars
Jun 29, 2021
How crisis talks over Supercars’ Gen3 future could leave it without a paddle Prime

How crisis talks over Supercars’ Gen3 future could leave it without a paddle

With Supercars’ Gen3 era on the horizon, a shift is set to take place – in more ways than one – but, as has become clear in recent weeks, the plan to bin the stick and use paddles with electronic assisted shift has been met with fierce opposition

Supercars
May 24, 2021
Can DJR still be a Supercars powerhouse after Penske? Prime

Can DJR still be a Supercars powerhouse after Penske?

Roger Penske's whirlwind Australian Supercars sojourn is over. After six seasons, three drivers' titles, three teams' championships and a Bathurst 1000 crown, The Captain has sold his controlling stake in Dick Johnson Racing back to the squad and walked away from the category.

Supercars
Feb 26, 2021
Can Whincup be Triple Eight's ruthless leader? Prime

Can Whincup be Triple Eight's ruthless leader?

Supercars' most successful team of the past 15 years is set for a radical shakeup next year when Jamie Whincup retires from driving and takes over the reins at Triple Eight. But does he have what it takes to be the new Roland Dane?

Supercars
Feb 8, 2021
How a lifetime Supercars deal broke down in one year Prime

How a lifetime Supercars deal broke down in one year

David Reynolds inked what was effectively a lifetime deal with Erebus in 2019 – only to walk out a year later. What went wrong?

Supercars
Dec 18, 2020
Why Supercars now needs a new "human salt harvester" Prime

Why Supercars now needs a new "human salt harvester"

Scott McLaughlin has been a controversial figure in Supercars over the past few years but, as he heads off to a fresh challenge in IndyCar, the Australian tin-top series needs to find someone else to fill his drama-filled boots as the category enters a new era...

Supercars
Nov 3, 2020