It came as no co-incidence that unheralded driver Chaz Mostert lifted the impoverished Dick Johnson Racing team to a fairytale victory at Ipswich.
Mostert was consumed by a wave of emotions as he tried to describe his feelings after winning his maiden V8 Supercars race, ending a 967 day losing streak for DJR’s in the process.
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The 21-year-old Queenslander was hired to drive the #12 Falcon, replacing Jonny Reid from the fourth event of the season in Perth.
At the time DJR was battling toward the back of the pack and looked long odds of cracking a top 10 finish let alone climbing to the top step of the podium.
Like DJR, Mostert has battled his own financial pressures on the rise through karts, Formula Fords and the Dunlop V8 Supercars Series.
“It’s a hard commercial rollercoaster to get this far. I just can’t thank everybody enough,” Mostert said.
A driver with immense natural talent, Mostert was initially overwhelmed in the glare of the media conference before composing himself to describe how he was humbled at winning against the cream of Australia’s touring car drivers.
“For me I really don’t know what I’m feeling. I’m probably going to wake up in the morning and think, ‘god I wish it was still last night or still feeling as happy as I am right now’.”
“This is what you strive for as young bloke in go-karts and you think about getting to the top of the league and against the best guys in the country.
“A lot of people go, ‘do you want to go overseas or something’ but I believe we have got some of the best drivers here in Australia.
“Today to win in front of most of them, some of the best drivers in the world is an ecstatic feeling and a big pat on the back to my parents and everyone who has helped get me here.”
Mostert prevailed in a race where another young gun, Scott McLaughlin was taking decent chunks of time out of his lead before the 20-year-old Kiwi driver’s left-front tyre blew.
“For sure I was trying to see the gap Scott had behind me,” Mostert said.
“He was coming like a bullet and it’s a real credit to his team. He did a real good job today. It was like the Dunlop Series again and its good that we’ve both got a main game seat.
“But I thought I was definitely done for with 17 laps to go. The tyres were starting to go away in the rear. But it’s a real credit to race against him (McLaughlin) in the same series.”
Mostert has struck a formidable repore with experienced engineer Adam de Borre,. Like Mostert, de Borre is contracted to FPR.
McLaughlin, who won the earlier race, was full of praise for his fellow young rival.
“Big credits to Chaz, he drove well,” he said.
“I thought we had something there for him. I thought it would be pretty cool for V8 Supercars two young guns going at it.
“It sort of felt like the Dunlop Series.”