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Tander joins Lowndes for Audi Bathurst tilt

Tom Howard

Saturday 31st October, 2015 - 10:00am

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Garth Tander got behind the wheel of the new Jamec-Pem Racing Audi at Phillip Island on Friday

Garth Tander got behind the wheel of the new Jamec-Pem Racing Audi at Phillip Island on Friday

Garth Tander will team up with Craig Lowndes to contest February’s Bathurst 12 Hour behind the wheel of a Jamec-Pem Racing Audi.

The Holden Racing Team V8 Supercar star will join Lowndes and team owner Steve McLaughlan in one of two new specification Audi R8 LMS GT3s, operated by Melbourne Performance Centre’s Audi Sport customer racing program.

Tander has been a long time admirer of GT racing, making sporadic appearances with Tony Quinn in the Australian GT Championship in recent years.

Rivals on the track in V8 Supercars, next year’s Bathurst 12 Hour will represent the first time that Tander and Lowndes will work together as team-mates.

Combined the duo boast nine Bathurst 1000 victories, as well as a Bathurst 24 Hour (Tander, 2003) and Bathurst 12 Hour (Lowndes, 2014) triumph.

“It’s great, obviously we (myself and Craig) have raced against each other our whole careers but we have never teamed up with each other before,” Tander told Speedcafe.com.

“We are going there to win it. Steve (McLaughlan) has got a big investment in the race with two cars and there are some pretty good drivers in the other car, but with Craig’s and my experience at Bathurst we certainly like to think we will be one of the contenders.

“For me its a great opportunity to race against world class GT3 drivers.

“I love Bathurst and I love the race track. It is a very different type of race from the 1000 so it is good to keep my motorsport fresh.

“To be able to do this with Steve McLaughlan and the MPC guys who I know quite well is great and it is looking like we are going to have a good team.”

Tander, Lowndes and McLaughlan will be joined at Jamec-Pem Racing by factory Audi drivers Christopher Mies and Christopher Haase and Italian Marco Mapelli in the squad’s second entry.

Facing the prospect of a star studded line up for next year’s race, team manager Troy Russell is confident they will be contenders for outright glory.

“With the calibre of drivers we have at our disposal this will be our best opportunity yet to win this race,” Russell told Speedcafe.com.

Tander logged his first laps in the Jamec-Pem Racing Audi R8 LMS GT3 Bathurst challenger at Phillip Island on Friday.

“The car was great straight out of the box we had a little bit of a play with it,” added Tander.

“It was very much a shakedown but times were good and pretty respectable.”

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