Percat lands late single-seater call-up

Nick Percat

Nick Percat will make a rare return to single seater racing this weekend after last minute call to race a Formula 1000 at Perth’s Barbagallo Wanneroo Raceway.

The Brad Jones Racing Supercars driver is set to compete in a state level event at the Western Australia venue in a car prepared by Arise Racing.

Percat has an affiliation with the team having been enlisted as a judge of a talent contest run by the organisation, which will offer a fully funded Formula 1000 drive to the winner.

The opportunity came via text message on Thursday and arrives just days after an eventful Watpac Townsville 400 that saw the South Australian caught up in a pit lane fire.

The 30-year-old, who had a precautionary medical check-up this week following the Townsville incident, has taken part in a test session today ahead of three races on Saturday.

“Honestly, I was hanging around at home with Nelson (the dog) on Thursday and I got a text message saying, ‘What are you doing? Do you want to have a skid this weekend?'” said Percat.

“I said ‘Yeah, why not?’ We checked the flights, found what we needed, and I jumped on the bird this morning and flew to Perth. So I genuinely only found out about 4pm yesterday.

“I don’t know a lot about the cars, but I’m expecting it to be a lot of fun to drive.

“I’m just looking forward to driving an open-wheeler again.

“And the positive for me is that I get a closer look at what Arise Racing is doing over here, and a better understanding of the car that the talent search winner will be racing. So it works out well, and I get to have a bit of fun along the way.”

Percat is looking forward to a return to single seater racing with his last outing arriving in the MRF 1600 series in India in 2011 after winning the Australian Formula Ford Series in 2009.

“I won’t be able to drive it like the Supercar, that’s for sure. I haven’t even thought about expectations or anything like that, I haven’t had time to.

“But I’m looking forward to it. When you race against different people you learn new tricks. That’s why I do the karting as well.

“There will be some guys in the field here who are young and have new ways of doing things. You never stop learning.”

Percat is set to feature in a 13-car field that will include former Australian cricket ace Mitchell Johnson.

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