Fraser: I am not playing catch-up

Declan Fraser. Picture: Shaun Tanner

Declan Fraser. Picture: Shaun Tanner

Declan Fraser says he is not playing catch-up after returning to the driver’s seat at Tickford Racing’s final test day before the Supercars season-opener.

The rookie missed out on the official pre-season test at Sydney Motorsport Park when he came down with tonsillitis and, he has now revealed, glandular fever combined.

Either side of that, however, he has clocked up at least 100 laps of Winton at both the #56 Gen3 Ford Mustang shakedown a fortnight ago and a test day today.

“It was obviously a bummer to miss Sydney,” he told at the end of the Winton test.

“I was really looking forward to the testing but also everything surrounding it – it was the launch of our new livery, it was the launch for the events, it was basically the launch of everything – so to miss out was a bit of a disappointment but it rained for most of the test day.

“We got some good, valuable testing with all the other drivers in different conditions, which was good for a new car, and it was good to be back in the car myself.

“I feel pretty good, I felt fit for most of the day, and I’ve done a fair few laps, so pretty happy with how the day went.”

Declan Fraser

The #56 Tickford Racing Ford Mustang on-track. Picture: Shaun Tanner

Fraser notched up the 100-plus-lap haul despite an off at Turn 4, when he lightly nudged the barriers with the left-front corner of the #56 Mustang.

When asked if he is now playing catch-up given his absence from Sydney, the 2022 Dunlop Super2 Series winner replied, “I don’t believe so.

“The Sydney test, like I said, was wet for most of the part, so it was a difficult test day for every team in pit lane, I think.

“I didn’t miss too much in missing it, but I did a bulk of laps at the shakedown and also here, so I’m pretty confident with how the cars are feeling and coming to grips with it.”

Tickford tested both James Courtney’s #5 Snowy River Caravans- and Fraser’s #56 Tradie-backed Mustang today, with enduro drivers Zak Best and James Moffat also in attendance.

A total of eight Repco Supercars Championship entries were in action, the others being the Mustangs from Walkinshaw Andretti United and Grove Racing, and the two Chevrolet Camaros of Team 18.

The Thrifty Newcastle 500 takes place on March 10-12.

Join the discussion below in the comments section

Please note: reserves the right to remove any comment that does not follow the comment policy. For support, contact [email protected]