Pither: PremiAir Racing not just building towards 2023

Chris Pither

Chris Pither says upstart Supercars team PremiAir Racing will be aiming high for its maiden season, despite its second year seeming a better opportunity for success.

PremiAir Racing took over struggling Team Sydney roughly a fortnight ago, starting from scratch under the new ownership of drag racer Peter Xiberras.

With minimal preparation time for a Gen2 package all 10 of its rival teams are familiar with, a line of thought could see 2022 written off as a learning year with results focused towards the introduction of Gen3 machinery next year.

But even with the team hurriedly assembling a crew in time for the Sydney Motorsport Park season-opener on March 4-6, Pither says short-term results are being targeted too.

“It’s definitely going to be a challenge, no doubt about it, simply because of the timeframe we have got to prepare and pull everything together,” Pither told Speedcafe.com.

“But ultimately, Pete is putting the right foundations in place now so that we have got the right resources and personnel there to make it a success and have a good crack this year.

“We have set our own targets, we’re aiming high as you have to do, and we’ll be working as hard as possible to achieve them.

“Yes, this year we’ll be building a team to be in a good place for next year when Gen3 is rolled out, but we’re definitely going out there this year to get respectable results.”

Pither has already spoken of his desire to work with fellow Super2 Series title winner Garry Jacobson, the two having plenty in common – including being announced on an initial one-year deal.

“I have known Garry for a long time; obviously I raced against Garry in the Dunlop Series as well and he’s a genuine guy,” said Pither.

“But what I’m excited about is I think Garry and I are both on the same page and we do have a good relationship which is important, and it’s important for the team as a whole that everyone is passionate, enjoying what they’re doing, and motivated.

“I think Garry and I are in a similar sort of place in terms of our career and we’ll be looking at this as a big opportunity and I think both of us will be pushing each other hard and trying to feed off each other to move forward.

“I believe Garry and I will complement each other in that respect and hopefully we can do that and push each other up the field.”

In his journeyman career, Pither has never had the luxury of back-to-back seasons in the main game.

While securing his future for 2023 is an obvious goal, the 35-year-old Kiwi is first and foremost intent on helping PremiAir Racing quickly find its feet.

“There’s a lot still to be finalised but the focus in the short-term is just building the team and getting the foundations in place to roll out at Round 1 and do the best we possibly can,” he said.

“I would love to be in the team for multiple years, but to be honest, it’s not a focus for me at this point.

“My focus needs to be on the year ahead and if we can get the results that we are striving to achieve, there’s no reason why we can’t make this more of a long-term partnership.”

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