Gavin unsure on Corvette to Commodore switch
Long-time GT racer Oliver Gavin is not making any bold predictions ahead of his maiden V8 Supercars Championship outing as part of the Armor All Gold Coast 600 this October.
Gavin will race alongside Greg Murphy in Kelly Racing’s Pepsi Max Crew Commodore in the event that requires each V8 Supercars entry to ‘adopt’ an international co-driver.
While Gavin has no prior V8 Supercars experience, the 39-year-old Briton currently races rear-wheel-drive V8s from Holden’s sister General Motors brands Chevrolet and Corvette in the GrandAm Sports Car and American Le Mans Series respectively.
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Gavin says that he will not know, however, if his full-time drives will significantly help his transition to V8 Supercars until he tests the #11 Commodore for the first time at Queensland Raceway leading up to the Surfers Paradise race weekend.
“Every car and tyre is different and you probably need to have a certain style of driving to get the most out of it,” said Gavin.
“The basic layout of the V8 is similar to the Corvette, but until you get your bum in the seat you’re never really sure what it’ll be like to drive. I’m relishing the challenge – it will be fantastic fun.”
Gavin, whose Corvette Racing team-mate Richard Westbrook will also line-up with Kelly Racing on the Gold Coast, is enthusiastic about the V8 Supercars Championship, comparing it favourably to the smaller capacity classes seen in Europe.
“It’s a very exciting series, which has got the formula absolutely right in terms of what people want to see in touring cars,” he said of V8 Supercars.
“They want to hear the roar of an engine and drivers battling wheel to wheel and that’s what it has in spades; what I feel touring cars should be like.
“I think there’ve been some great races at the Surfers Paradise circuit itself and it lends itself to this close kind of racing.
“The series appears to me to be exciting, dynamic and fan friendly. You feel it works hard to engage the fans and people to come to the races, just like the American Le Mans Series does, so think I’ll feel right at home.”
The 2011 Armor All Gold Coast 600 will take place from October 21-23.