Paul Morris will contest this weekend’s inaugural Bathurst 6 Hour after receiving a late call up to drive for the pacesetting Roadchill Express BMW squad.
The former Bathurst 1000 winner will replace Luke Searle’s co-driver Barry Graham, who has been sidelined through illness.
The Roadchill BMW was quickest across the pair of 50-minute practice sessions on Friday, however Graham reported a motion-sickness style illness throughout the day before ultimately making the tough decision to pull out.
Upon hearing the news Morris, who raced against Searle in Super Touring during the 1990s, has flown to Bathurst to take up the seat and is due to jump behind the wheel of the BMW today.
“Barry has a motion sickness – as soon as he goes up and over the Mountain, It’s like a car sickness or travel sickness,” said Searle.
“He’s pulled out and it has broken his heart because he’s looked forward to this for the last 12 Months and he feels like he’s let us down, but he can’t put a lap together, he’s just sick.
“(Paul) was top of the list and I’ve always wanted to drive with Paul pretty much my whole life,
“He’s been my kind of hero to look up to.
“We started off in Super Tourers which he was the king of so my whole life he’s been the guy I’ve always wanted to drive with, so I’m excited about that.”
Morris boasts an impressive record driving BMW machinery having won the Bathurst 12 hour in 2007 and 2010 driving a BMW 335i for Garry Holt’s Eastern Creek Karts team.
Prior to that, he won three Australian Super Touring Championships driving for the factory Diet Coke BMW team prior to switching to V8 Supercars full-time.
Morris join former Bathurst 1000 champions Chaz Mostert and John Bowe amongst a strong 50-car grid for this weekend’s event.