POLL: Best Supercar enduro signing so far

Bathurst 1000

Lee Holdsworth and Chaz Mostert after winning the 2021 Bathurst 1000

As the field for Supercars’ two enduros takes shape, we ask who you think is the best new signing so far, in this week’s Pirtek Poll.

Walkinshaw Andretti United confirmed its Sandown 500 and Bathurst 1000 line-up, at least so far as full-time entries are concerned, in recent days with the announcement of the retention of Fabian Coulthard and return of Lee Holdsworth.

In a sense, Holdsworth is also a ‘retention’ if it is indeed true that WAU held an option on his services as a condition of release to drive full-time for Grove Racing last year.

Regardless, the Clayton-based team would still have to sign on the dotted line to have one half of its dominant, 2021 Great Race-winning pairing back, and hence he too can be considered something of a new signing.

Spoilt for choice after Coulthard helped Chaz Mostert finish second in last year’s Repco Bathurst 1000, WAU ultimately chose to restore the Mostert/Holdsworth duo in the #25 Mobil 1 Optus Racing entry.

Its Kiwi co-driver therefore switches to the #2 Mobil 1 NTI Racing car, while Warren Luff remains under the contract with the possibility of being loaned out to another team or, should it come to pass, being placed in a wildcard Ford Mustang from Clayton.

Garth Tander at Grove Racing’s Braeside workshop

Back at Holdsworth’s old team, the cat was thrown amongst the pigeons when Grove announced in December that it had prised Garth Tander away from Triple Eight Race Engineering to drive one of its Penrite Racing Mustangs.

At this stage, there is still no clarity over whether Tander will partner David Reynolds or Matt Payne, but his impact is already being felt at the team based on comments from the 2017 Bathurst 1000 winner.

According to Reynolds, the five-time Great Race winner delivers similar engineering feedback to himself, but does so in an “unbelievable” way.

Triple Eight’s response to the Tander defection was to sign up Richie Stanaway to drive with Shane van Gisbergen in the #97 Red Bull Ampol Racing Chevrolet Camaro in this year’s long-distance races.

Stanaway is one of Supercars’ great mysteries, capable of brilliance and implosion, but if it is true that one is only as good as their last performance, then a top 10 qualifying berth and a fighting 11th in the Erebus Motorsport/Boost Mobile wildcard at Mount Panorama last year is a positive sign.

Richie Stanaway (left) will drive with Shane van Gisbergen (right) in the 2023 Supercars enduros

Richie Stanaway (left) will drive with Shane van Gisbergen (right) in the 2023 Supercars enduros

Of course, the last time he was a designated co-driver, Stanaway won the Sandown 500 with Tickford Racing and was a contender at Bathurst until primary driver Cam Waters was caught up in a Tander-Mostert tangle on Lap 145.

A further, significant consideration for all is just how well teams and drivers will adapt to Gen3, and therefore how reliable a form guide history is.

With just a handful of signings announced so far, we have restricted poll options to just the three (at least somewhat) new arrivals at their respective teams, who are co-driving in full-time entries.

So, is it the return of Holdsworth, the coup that is Tander, or the enigma that is Stanaway? Cast your vote on best new enduro signing in this week’s Pirtek Poll.

Pirtek Poll

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