DJR moving Gen3 Mustang into endurance testing
Friday 21st January, 2022 - 6:00am
Ford homologation squad Dick Johnson Racing is set to move its new Mustang prototype into the next phase of Gen3 testing.
The team completed a shakedown at Queensland Raceway late last year ahead of the car’s public debut at the Repco Supercars Championship’s season-ending Bathurst 1000.
Earlier this week the team returned to the Ipswich circuit for a two-day test with Will Davison and Zane Goddard at the wheel, marking the first laps of 2022.
The team largely focused on short runs this week, though next week’s test will see longer spells on track.
Speaking with Speedcafe.com, Dick Johnson Racing’s chief engineer Perry Kapper said the team will make adjustments between the two tests to aid driver comfort.
Notably, both the Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro ran without any form of driver cooling, with both window naca ducts and cool suit systems absent.
“We’ll make some minor changes,” said Kapper.
“We don’t have a lot of time to make changes, but we’ll make minor changes and we’ll continue to push for longer runs basically.
“It’s pushing now into more endurance testing, so we’ll go for longer runs and look to understand how the car performs over 15-, 20-lap runs, things like that.
“The drivers were reasonably happy,” he added.
“We improved how comfortable they were in the car over the two days and that will make their longer running in the coming tests easier and more comfortable for them.
“We’ll start working on some driver cooling and management on that side of things for them to make them even more comfortable.
“So we’re still missing a few of those systems in the car, but we’ll aim to get those in and that will help them over those longer runs as well.”
Testing wasn’t all plain sailing, having spent the lion’s share of Tuesday’s running sidelined due to a throttle sensor failure.
The team sought to resolve the issue with ducting to cool the footwell, eventually returning to the track for the final three hours of the day.
Kapper said the team will work with Supercars and control brake supplier AP Racing to understand the issues.
“The pedal box is an off-the-shelf AP unit, which is specced by Supercars,” said Kapper.
“It’s a very good pedal box. There’s no issues with that at all. The sensor is the throttle pedal sensor and that had an issue, or it failed.
“We’ll send the sensor back to AP, they’ll investigate it, and understand what needs to be rectified there.
“It’s a pretty straightforward thing. It always hampers your progress a little bit, but it’s not unexpected with a new car like this, and a new pedal box.”
Aesthetically, Kapper said the Mustang will remain largely unchanged over the course of testing.
It’s expected the Mustang will eventually receive a facelift courtesy of the change from the current S550 model to the S650, which as yet, does not have a release date attached to it.
Testing will resume on Monday and continue into Tuesday with Tickford Racing’s James Courtney and the Blanchard Racing Team’s Tim Slade splitting driving duties.