FEATURE: Inside Campbell’s Supercup home

Speedcafe.com

Friday 14th July, 2017 - 5:18pm

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Fach Auto Tech boss Alex Fach with Matt Campbell

One of Europe’s most experienced team owners, Alex Fach, believes in doing things ‘old school’ and that suits his young Australian talent Matt Campbell down to the ground.

In fact, Fach Auto Tech is more like a family than any other organisation in Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup and for a modest and grateful kid from regional Queensland, that could be just the ingredient to get him through the challenge of moving out of home and living on the other side of the world.

Campbell is quick enough and has the potential to be a star of the sport, but the next 12 months will be crucial to his final destination.

The on-track synergy between Campbell and Fach has already been more than evident in the first four races of the Supercup season with three pole positions and a lights to flag victory in Austria last weekend.

The next chapter of the journey continues with race five of the championship as part of the British Grand Prix schedule at Silverstone this weekend.

Matt Campbell in the sleeping quarters of the Fach Auto Tech

Campbell lives with a family in Stuttgart in Germany and is totally focused and displaying a work ethic which has already been applauded by fellow Australian and former F1 hero Mark Webber.

The family atmosphere extends to the track where Fach has his entire team, including himself, sleep on foam mattresses in a transporter which he designed and built himself.

There is a meeting room, shower and temporary cupboard and hanging space, while the Porsche hospitality unit caters for all the team’s meals.

“Our team is a very small team. We might only have a limited number of people, but they all have a job to do and they do it very well,” said Fach.

“We are not a team, we are a family.

“To leave his home town at the age of 21 and come to Europe, it’s not so easy.

“Matt had no contacts before joining the team and we have helped him where we can and made sure he feels a part of the family.

“We work as closely as we can with the drivers, to the point where they sleep in the truck with us at the track.

“It gives us time to talk about other things outside of racing and what happened through the week and anything else on their mind.

“It is important to talk about other things than racing, we talk about life in general.”

Campbell’s race equipment

Fach supplied the equipment which helped Kiwi champion Earl Bamber to the Porsche Supercup title in 2014.

While Fach is very complementary of Bamber and what he has gone on to achieve, you get the feeling that he believes that Campbell may be even more special.

“Matt is a very, very finished driver for his age and his experience,” said Fach.

“He does not have a lot of experience in racing and is so young, it is quite amazing and something he should be proud of.

“Earl came to us with a lot of experience in racing and there was not much we could do to help his racing, he was completely finished.

“Matt is the opposite. With limited amount of experience, that allows us to help him much more.

“What is the same is that both are big, big talents and have great personalities.”

Fach believes a mixture or his raw racing talent and his temperament are a perfect combination.

“He is very, very fast and he is so cool,” said Fach.

“He is not nervous. I am nervous before every qualifying and race, but he is just so cool.

“It is a very special quality.

Alex Fach and Matt Campbell celebrate after victory in Austria

“I am sure he will progress as a pro driver at the highest levels of the sport.”

Campbell’s lights-to-flag victory in Austria has him third in the championship, but still 18 points behind German Michael Ammermuller, who won the three opening races and was second at the Red Bull Ring.

Campbell’s win in Austria gave him the outright rookie trophy and the Nations League trophy, becoming the first Australian to win in Porsche Supercup since Alex Davison at Indianapolis in 2002.

Those trophies in Austria were presented by young Kiwi Porsche driver Brendon Hartley, who was at the track to drive a Porsche 919 Le Mans 24 Hour car in exhibition laps.

“If it is mathematically possible then you can win the championship,” said Fach.

“At the moment we are 18 points behind Ammermuller and we can’t win the championship on our own efforts with just eight races.

“The championship is not our highest priority, the highest goal is to do a perfect job.

“Matt is doing what he can do, but we need a little luck.

“We just have to do the best we can and if we win the championship we are so, so happy.

“If we fall short we can say we did the best job we could.”