LDM plans two event return for British ace
Nick Percat is set to have two different co-drivers in this year’s Pirtek Enduro Cup due to a Sandown date clash for British star Oliver Gavin.
Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport team manager Barry Hay has confirmed to Speedcafe.com that the squad will have Gavin back this season, despite only being available for two events.
The 43-year-old Brit will miss the September 16-18 Sundown 500 on the account of his United SportsCar Championship duties with Corvette Racing in Austin, Texas on the same weekend.
Gavin has raced alongside Percat in the Enduro Cup for the last two years, taking a Bathurst podium together at Walkinshaw Racing before both switching to LDM for 2015.
Hay says that the rare occurrence of deliberately changing co-drivers between Sandown and Bathurst is worth it to give the duo another shot at a strong Bathurst result.
“It was always a two-year thing with Olly, so he’s 100 percent in, we just don’t know what we’re doing for Sandown yet,” Hay told Speedcafe.com.
“It’s not ideal to need another co-driver but even if he (Gavin) could only do Bathurst, we’d change everything to suit that.
“He’s very good and works together super tight with Nick. They drive the same way and like very similar things from the car so it’s an awesome combination.”
Work on filling the enduro seat alongside Andre Heimgartner also continues after LDM’s second co-driver from last year, Karl Reindler, elected to move to Team 18.
Despite a maiden victory at the Clipsal 500, the squad has endured a tough start to the campaign, thanks in part due to the departure of several staff over the off-season.
Hay says he’s still on the lookout for a race engineer for Heimgartner’s car, having filled the role himself throughout the season to date.
While that arrangement continues for now, a recently hired sponsorship manager and fabricator have helped ease Hay’s workload.
Other recent changes have seen new-for-2016 crew chief Andy Atkins depart for Team 18 and be replaced by the highly experienced Kevin May.
Bruin Beasley is meanwhile running the team’s Alex Rullo driven Dunlop Series entry at race meetings following its addition to the squad this year.
LDM’s V8 Supercars Championship Holdens are both set to receive a new look for the upcoming Barbagallo meeting, with recent sponsor Abro returning later in the season.