Reynolds buys sauna to deal with Supercars cabin heat

David Reynolds. Picture: Shaun Tanner

David Reynolds. Picture: Shaun Tanner

David Reynolds has revealed that he has invested in a sauna after battling with high temperatures in his Grove Racing Supercar in 2022.

The 2017 Bathurst 1000 winner is about to embark on a third season with the Groves (including the 2021 campaign as Kelly Grove Racing), driving one of its Penrite-backed Ford Mustangs.

Among the highlights of his 2022 season were a second place on the streets of the Gold Coast, a race which left Reynolds “totally smashed” due to not only the struggles of a loose steering wheel but also cabin heat.

“Last year, I struggled with the heat really bad,” said the man who lost the lead of the 2018 Bathurst 1000 due to a leg cramp.

“For some reason, our car was a lot hotter than all the other cars, so how I’ve prepared myself this year, I’ve bought a little sauna – a box with a door that can get really hot – that I can sit in there to try and get used to the heat again, so that’s one thing I’ve done different.”

It is thought that the Gen3 Supercars will run cooler than the Gen2 vehicles generally, in part because the front undertray has largely been eliminated and hence more hot air can escape from the front of the car.

However, new challenges will arise due to the drastic change in the technical ruleset.

“I’ve driven this car a couple of times now and it’s a lot different to drive than the old car,” said Reynolds, who has just completed his final pre-season test day at Winton.

“For us drivers and teams, we’re exploring the limits of the car, set-up, and the drivers as well, so it’s a strange time in my life because I’ve been driving the same car for the last 10 years and I have top re-learn everything as a driver.

“So I’m kind of going into the races with my eyes wide open, so I don’t really know what’s going to happen.”

David Reynolds

Reynolds testing his Grove Racing Gen3 Ford Mustang at Winton. Picture: Shaun Tanner

The seven-time Repco Supercars Championship race winner was speaking as part of the build-up to the Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix.

This year’s event will, of course, mark the first time that the Gen3 cars race on the Albert Park Grand Prix Circuit, a venue which was kind to Grove in 2022 when it scored a total of four podiums, including three for Reynolds.

By the time the Supercars field descends on the Melbourne street circuit, teams and drivers will have one race event under their belts, but the Newcastle track is a very different proposition to that of Albert Park.

“Grand Prix’s going to be one of the first experiences where we can actually find out how the car’s going to handle at high-speed tracks,” noted Reynolds.

“So, we’ve got Newcastle, our first round, which is like a slow-speed track – street track; very scary – then we go to a high-speed track like Albert Park, so we don’t really know what cars are going to be good and what drivers are going to be good there.”

The Thrifty Newcastle 500 takes place on March 10-12 and the Beaurepaires Melbourne SuperSprint at Albert Park on March 30-April 2.

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