Steven Richards will pilot Charlie Schwerkolt Racing’s SuperUte at this weekend’s Century Batteries Ipswich SuperSprint.
Already slated to drive Schwerkolt’s Irwin Racing ZB Commodore alongside Mark Winterbottom in the Pirtek Enduro Cup, Richards will now increase his association with the operation by racing in the ECB SuperUtes Series.
The squad returns to the SuperUtes grid at Queensland Raceway having been absent from the last two rounds at Winton in May and Townsville earlier this month.
Supercars co-driver Dean Canto drove for the team at Adelaide, that saw the Holden Colorado involved in a significant crash, while Peter Major took the wheel at Barbagallo for Round 2 in May.
Regarded as one of the most versatile racers on the grid, this weekend will see Richards in uncharted waters for once.
“I enjoy driving anything competitive and look forward to driving the Holden Colorado for Charlie (Schwerkolt) and ACDelco,” said Richards.
“Charlie asked me if I’d like to drive the Holden Colorado and I jumped at the opportunity.
“It made sense being a part of Team 18 and if we can help to sort the ute out quickly, we can focus on becoming more competitive as the weekend progresses.
“I’ll drive the ute for the first time in practice on Friday. I’d like to think that if I can get up to speed quickly, then we can work on it and make it more competitive as the weekend rolls out.
“The ECB Superute Championship has provided a fair amount of action this year.
“The objective for the weekend is to complete all of the sessions and races and get some good mileage under our belt and more importantly, keep our noses clean and put on a good show.”
Team owner Schwerkolt is confident Richards will quickly adapt to the nuances of SuperUtes racing.
“We’ve had a couple of name drivers throughout the years such as Dean Canto and Peter Major, which, due to crashes or mechanical issues, haven’t worked out but I think after a massive overhaul, its ready for Richo to race right up the front of the pack,” said Schwerkolt.
“Being an integral part of Team 18, Richo jumped at the opportunity to get behind the wheel.
“Richo has such a wealth of experience driving everything anywhere. His feedback will be enormous for our next driver.”
Round 5 of SuperUtes, which supports the Ipswich SuperSprint, begins with two practice sessions this Friday.