Under the radar Aussies targeting Bathurst surprise
The HubAuto Corsa Ferrari trio of Tim Slade, Nick Foster, and Nick Percat are hoping to spring a surprise at this weekend’s Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour.
Much of the pre-event talk has centred around the Mercedes-AMG Team Vodafone car and other top European GT teams, with the pro-entered HubAuto Corsa line-up largely skipped over.
On paper, the all-Australian crew is as strong as any of the stand out combinations, with the Taiwanese outfit more than capable of preparing a race-winning Ferrari 488 GT3, as evidenced by their success in Blancpain GT Series Asia last year.
Not to mention the fact that Slade, Foster and Percat all have a massive amount of experience at Mount Panorama in a variety of machinery.
Foster says they are hoping to be quiet achievers this weekend, but without a doubt have their sights set on the top step of the podium.
“We just have to work on the car, work to the track conditions that we get given over the weekend and obviously BoP (Balance of Performance) plays a big part, but in the end, I’m confident that we’ll have a solid weekend,” Foster told Speedcafe.com.
“Anything can happen here and you just stay in it and in terms of actually getting a podium or a win, that’s always the goal.
“We’ll just chip away at it over the weekend, fly under the radar a little bit and try and be there at the last minute of 12 hours.
“In terms of the Ferrari itself, yes, it’s got history here. Good history,” Foster added, citing Maranello Motorsport’s dominant Bathurst 12 Hour victory in 2017.
“We just have to make sure that we have the right BoP. We have to make sure we execute everything we can, we have a nice race car on the day and we build into the track conditions.”
For Slade, this weekend will be the first time he has partnered with his Blancpain GT Series Asia team at the Bathurst 12 Hour having previously competed with McLaren squad Objective Racing.
The Brad Jones Racing Supercars driver is confident they have race winning package.
“I think the biggest thing for us, all the ingredients are there. It’s just a matter of execution and obviously in 12 hours, especially around this place, a little bit of luck as well,” commented Slade.
“Having done half a dozen odd races last year in the car (Ferrari 488 GT3) and then driving actually the exact same car as what I drove last year it’s probably the best prepared I’ve been for this race in a way, but I guess you’re up against guys that drive these cars full time for a living.
“It’s all as good as it can be.”
Percat says they will be looking to capitalise on all three driver’s prior Bathurst experience throughout the weekend.
“Coming here with that car, we’ve probably got the right ingredients to get a good result, so we’ll just keep flying under the radar,” he said.
“The good thing for me is these two, Sladey and Foster, do so much in that car and Nick’s driving GT’s all the time.
“I don’t want to be the bloke trying to qualify it or anything. I just want to be solid during the day and I think we all do (similar) lap times but when it comes to getting that last little bit out of it, the other two have a better knowledge of how to do that.
“That’s good for me, I don’t have to worry about that part.”
Track action begins on Friday with Practice 1 at 0850 AEDT.