In a shock move, Garry Rogers Motorsport – Team Fujitsu – has signed former Spyker MF1 test driver Alexandre Premat to race in the V8 Supercars in 2012. Premat becomes the first international driver to compete in the series full-time.
Well that is a surprising name to see in the V8 Supercars roster.
I think most people down here were expecting GRM and Stone Brothers to do a straight swap, giving up Lee Holdsworth and taking Alex Davison. Or maybe putting Andrew Thompson, the development series champion, in the car.
How utterly bizarre a move from Premat! Expected him to take a privateer WEC ride (OAK would have made sense). Guess the lad knows how tin-tops from DTM – BIG news for Supercars.
I wouldn’t say it’s “BIG” news. It’s certainly newsworthy, if only because Premat is the first foreign driver to enter the series full-time, but I doubt he is going to make a big splash. GRM are a middling team; they’ve had the occasional race win here and there, but they’ve never really developed much in terms of consistency. I suspect they may even be looking at joining forces with a new manufacturer – like Chrysler – next year; Garry Rogers Motorsport, Brad Jones Racing and Tekno Autosports are the three teams I think are most likely to sign up for a new entrant.
Premat isn’t the first foreign driver to race full time, there was Max Wilson in the early 00s, and of course others like Allan Moffat if you go back further.
Ah, yes. Wilson. I just realised I had completely forgotten about him – despite the fact that he raced in the V8s for six years. I guess he didn’t leave much of an impression.
He wasn’t too bad, and actually had a few very good drives (such as 3rd at Eastern Creek in 2003 in the wet), but was just too inconsistent.
I can’t see Premat doing too well this year, but perhaps it’s a move for the future, as in 2013 when the Car of the Future comes in, the handling is expected to be more like a DTM style race car, so it could suit internationals much more.
Well, I’ve heard that GRM are interested in joining with a new manufacturer – be it Chrysler or someone else – should they enter the sport next year. Of all the second-tier Holden teams, I think Rogers has gotten the best results with the least resources, so works funding from someone like Chrysler could be exactly what the team needs. I think a little bit of extra money could go a long way with them.
I don’t think Chrysler would be paying large sums of money though. I think that in the CotF era, extra manufacturers are basically only new sponsors like Vodafone or Fujitsu rather than being works entries.
I’d say Kelly Racing would be a more viable option for any manufacturer wanting to come in, as they have 4 cars that perform at a decent level, and no connection with Holden.
I’d say Kelly Racing would be a more viable option for any manufacturer wanting to come in, as they have 4 cars that perform at a decent level, and no connection with Holden. –sounds reasonable
I think you’ll find that KR are Holden loyalists. And Rick Kelly is so insufferable that no manufacturer would want him spearheading their V8 campaign.
I guess the Kellys would have some loyalty to Holden, but realistically, at the moment, Holden’s not even sponsoring the team (note no Holden windscreen banners), so I think they would strongly consider any offers.
Same as Roland Dane, I’m sure he’d change manufacturers if someone offered a higher price.
so I think they would strongly consider any offers.
But would you make an offer? Rick Kelly is an absolute pain.
well Roland Dane would definitely jump ship. They’ve done it before when Ford pulled funding
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