Sheargold primed for mixed weather at The Bend
RAM Motorsport Mercedes-AMG GT3 pilot Michael Sheargold is hoping a recent test in variable weather conditions will give him and Garth Walden the edge in this weekend’s fifth round of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Australia Powered by AWS, to be held as part of The Bend Autofest this weekend.
Sheargold and Walden tested at The Bend a fortnight ago, with the two drivers experiencing a combination of wet and dry conditions throughout the day.
With mixed weather again on the forecast for this weekend, Sheargold said the knowledge gained by the drivers and the team throughout the test day will prove invaluable.
“You can never schedule testing in wet or changeable conditions, so at the test day we decided to make the most of it,” Sheargold said.
“It turned out to be a really productive day. As well as experimenting with wet and dry setups, I was also able to understand how the car behaved on a circuit with rapidly changing grip levels.
“For example, there was one session where I was on wet tyres on a drying track, and I was able to get a feel for how the wets behave when they start overheating as the track dries, and figure out when it was time to change to slicks.
“You don’t normally get a test day where you can experiment with those sorts of things, so we were very fortunate with the way it played out.”
This weekend’s round will feature the usual GT format of a pair of qualifying sessions – one for each driver – and a pair of one-hour races. Sheargold and Walden will compete in the Am Class, in which they are currently equal third in the standings.
“We’re well in contention for a top-three result in the championship, and only seven points away from second place, which is really good considering we missed the Queensland Raceway round earlier in the year,” Sheargold said.
“Hopefully we can achieve a couple of strong finishes and improve our position on the points table ahead of the last two rounds at Bathurst and the Adelaide Street Circuit.”
This weekend’s GT World Challenge races will be live-streamed on 7Plus.
GT World Challenge Australia Round 5 Schedule
Friday, October 21
10:20am – Practice 1 (30 min)
2:05pm – Practice 2 (30 min)
Saturday, October 22
9:15am – Qualifying 1 (20 min)
9:40am – Qualifying 2 (20 min)
2:55pm – Race 1 (60 min)
Sunday, October 23
11:45am – Race 2 (60 min)