Grove strengthening Supercars title credentials
Tuesday 7th November, 2023 - 4:23pm
David Reynolds’ victory in the Boost Mobile Gold Coast 500 is a sign that Grove Racing is building towards championship success in Supercars, according to Team Principal David Cauchi.
Reynolds staved off Brodie Kostecki to drive his Penrite Mustang to victory in Race 26 of the season on the streets of Surfers Paradise, the first triumph for the Groves as standalone entrants.
The team competed as Kelly Racing as recently as 2020, and continues to operate out of its Braeside workshop.
However, not only has that facility undergone extensive renovations, the squad has evolved significantly in just a handful of years.
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It became Kelly Grove Racing in 2021 before the takeover was complete in 2022, a change which coincided with the arrival of Cauchi from Triple Eight Race Engineering, where he had scaled great heights as a championship-winning engineer with Jamie Whincup and Shane van Gisbergen.
Now, his task is to achieve the same feat in a different role, and he believes Grove Racing is on the way there.
“It’s a huge achievement,” said Cauchi of the breakthrough race win.
“I always believed in Stephen Grove and Brenton Grove and their vision, and that’s why I made the jump from what was a great team and successful career.
“But, I believe in their vision and I wanted to work with them to be able to share what I know and bring us up to the level that we need to be to win races.
“We’ve done that [now] and the next step is to continue to win races so we can win championships.
“That’s been clear from day one, and we’re slowly building to that.”
Reynolds’ win was no fluke, and unlikely to be a flash in the pan so far as front-running performances go.
His rookie team-mate Matt Payne qualified on the front row for Race 25 and the second row for Race 26, in which he would go on to miss the podium by just one spot.
The Grove Mustangs were also relatively quick at The Bend, Sandown, and Bathurst, although incidents and misfortune would play a part in those events.
“Like Dave said, there’s been a huge amount of work going on in the background, from all the boys and girls at Penrite Racing, and it was a true team effort,” remarked Cauchi.
“Both cars were up the front, so we were able to use that strategically and Matt moved out the way for Dave to not make it hard for him.
“So, strategically, we were in a very good position, and one of the only teams to have two cars right up the front there.
“A true team effort today and just a really nice reward for everyone at the team for all the hard work that’s been going on over the last almost two years now.”
Reynolds, who is on the way to Team 18 next year with his seat at Grove to be taken by Richie Stanaway, is currently 12th in the championship and Payne 14th.
The 2023 Supercars season concludes at the Vailo Adelaide 500 on November 23-26.