State of play: The Supercars driver market
Tuesday 15th June, 2021 - 4:59pm
With this morning’s confirmation of a multi-year Walkinshaw Andretti United contract extension for Chaz Mostert, a key piece in the Supercars driver market puzzle has fallen into place.
Mostert was one of two front-running drivers off-contract at season’s end – the other being Cameron Waters – and had been touted as a potential candidate for the vacant 2022 seat at Triple Eight Race Engineering.
By Speedcafe.com’s count, Mostert becomes the 13th Supercars driver to secure his future beyond this season.
That does of course mean there is roughly half the 2022 grid still to be sorted in the coming six or so months…
Speedcafe.com breaks down the situation squad-by-squad, in order of the current teams’ championship standings.
Triple Eight Race Engineering
Under contract: Shane van Gisbergen (through 2023)
Retiring: Jamie Whincup
The #88 seat is the obvious key to the driver market, with Triple Eight weighing up various options to succeed seven-time champion Whincup. The team’s Super2 protégé Broc Feeney is among the chief contenders.
Dick Johnson Racing
Under contract: Anton De Pasquale, Will Davison (contract length uncertain)
Having run Scott McLaughlin and Fabian Coulthard as team-mates in four consecutive seasons, there was a double change at DJR for 2021, with both De Pasquale and Davison believed to have joined on multi-year agreements.
Under contract: Thomas Randle (through 2022)
Free agents: Cameron Waters, James Courtney, Jack Le Brocq
Ironically, the team’s only contracted driver for next year is the young gun without a current drive. Waters’ signature is considered top priority, having evolved into the team’s clear ace. Tickford may yet expand to four cars for 2022.
Walkinshaw Andretti United
Under contract: Chaz Mostert (through at least 2023)
Free agent: Bryce Fullwood
With Mostert extended as of this morning, focus switches to whether Fullwood will continue in the #2 or whether there’ll be a new face here next year.
Under contract: Mark Winterbottom (through 2022)
Free agent: Scott Pye
Winterbottom was confirmed last October to be driving past his 41st birthday, which falls next May. Pye meanwhile has matched up relatively well against ‘Frosty’ and has already signalled his hopes of a contract extension.
Kelly Grove Racing
Under contract: David Reynolds (through at least 2022)
Free agent: Andre Heimgartner
KGR is wary of rival interest in Heimgartner, who last month became a Supercars Championship race winner. The Kiwi is known to have a strong degree of loyalty to the Braeside outfit, but could the prospect of a top drive lure him away?
Under contract: Brodie Kostecki, Will Brown (contract length uncertain)
Erebus CEO Barry Ryan has declared both drivers have arrangements in place for next season.
Brad Jones Racing
Under contract: Nick Percat (through 2022)
Free agents: Todd Hazelwood, Macauley Jones
Uncertain: Jack Smith
Percat was extended early last year, having established himself as the team spearhead. Hazelwood has briefly spoken about his future hopes; Jones is working on moving his way up the pecking order; and Smith’s father Pete owns a Racing Entitlements Contract.
Matt Stone Racing
Free agents: Zane Goddard, Jake Kostecki
MSR enjoys a good relationship with its two SuperLite programme graduates but has yet to lock them in. Like Tickford, they may have an additional seat next year, pending how the tender situation around shelved RECs plays out.
Under contract: Fabian Coulthard, Garry Jacobson (both through 2022)
After a high turnover of drivers in recent campaigns – Jack Le Brocq in 2019, then a mix of Chris Pither, Alex Davison and James Courtney last year – Jonathon Webb put a premium on stability by signing his 2021 recruits to two-year deals.
Blanchard Racing Team
Under contract: Tim Slade (through 2022)
BRT boss Tim Blanchard has confirmed to Speedcafe.com that Slade will remain in CoolDrive colours next year.