Jordan Boys admits he considered walking away to a ‘normal life’ until achieving breakthrough race wins in the final two rounds of this year’s Dunlop Super2 Series.
Boys converted his maiden Armor All Pole Position into a first race win in the series at Sandown and capitalised when Bryce Fullwood made an uncharacteristic error while leading the last race of the season in Newcastle.
Image Racing team owner Terry Wyhoon has fielded the Albury youngster since the start of 2017, initially in the Kumho Tyre V8 Touring Car Series, and said that the Sandown result was no surprise to him.
Boys nevertheless said it took until the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 weekend, which preceded the Sandown round, as the occasion where he started to believe that his toil in Super2 was worthwhile.
“I guess from Bathurst onwards, for me, was pretty strong,” said Boys.
“(There was) just a big turnaround in the way we were doing things, but in saying that, (I) didn’t expect these sorts of results at the end of the year, so for us it’s just so uplifting.
“We had such a tough start to the year, and if you looked at where we started in Adelaide, and tough rounds like a double DNF in Townsville, this has kind of made the year worth it.
“Before probably Bathurst, it was starting to get to the point of, ‘Why am I doing this? I should just sort of go and live a normal life.’
“I definitely didn’t expect to be winning races. I knew that I should have been a top five guy but I just didn’t know if I was good enough at driving a Supercar specifically to be a race winner.
“These last sort of three months have been huge for my confidence, in what I can do in the future, and what that holds I don’t know.”
Boys’ Bathurst performance was masked firstly by qualifying last when he missed the drier running Friday afternoon running due to a penalty for a procedural breach in practice, then when he lost two positions late in the race due to an incident with Ash Walsh and finished seventh.
The 22-year-old cited the pre-Bathurst test day for the Erebus-aligned team as the start of the turning point.
On where the newfound speed came from, Boys, who had an ex-Garry Rogers Motorsport car at Image last year, explained, “I think we got some stuff for the car, that was probably helped a lot, but then at the same time we changed some stuff that really suited me.
“As soon as I got done with the test, I just wasn’t locking up and running off the track anymore, so that makes a difference.
“I think I maybe underestimated how much it would take to get used to driving an Erebus car, they’re definitely fast obviously, but they take their own style.
“I think I’d learned some bad habits from cars I’ve driven previously, and that was really hurting me for what I was doing.
“So we changed some stuff, which really helped me sort of get used to the car, and really get the most out of the car. Then the team as a whole I think made a step up.
“I think Adam’s (Marjoram, team-mate) pace, as well, has been good at times, it’s just he hasn’t quite been able to just have the good qualifyings like I’ve had, so I think overall as a team we’re stepping forward and making really good gains.”
Boys, whose comments about the confidence in his career prospects are similar to those of 2019 series winner Fullwood, has his eye on competing in Super2 again next year with Image while also adding some Supercars Championship outings as a wildcard or in the Pirtek Enduro Cup.
“(I) Plan to come back and do this next year, and hopefully do what Bryce has done,” he said.
“’Locked and loaded’ is probably not the word, because I’ve got to chase financial backing as always, but I’ve got every intention of doing it again.
“Then if I could do some wildcards, obviously that’d be great. I think it’s a great learning tool, and hopefully the co-drives as well. I don’t know where, but hopefully I can get a spot somewhere.”
Boys finished seventh in the Super2 standings this year having sat 19th after three rounds out of seven.