TICKFORD RACING – GOLD COAST 600 PREVIEW
24 October, 2019
Tickford Racing is prepared to bounce back from a disappointing Bathurst 1000 at this weekend’s Gold Coast 600, the second leg of the 2019 Enduro Cup and the 13th round of the 2019 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship.
Chaz Mostert (No. 55 Supercheap Auto Ford Mustang) enters the weekend third in the championship, flanked by co-driver James Moffat as the pair hope to repeat last year’s performance, where they led 65 of 102 laps en route to winning the Saturday race, and were the effective leaders on Sunday when the race was cancelled due to torrential storms over the circuit.
Sitting seventh in the championship, Cameron Waters (No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Mustang) looks to shake off Bathurst’s frustration with a strong weekend alongside co-driver Michael Caruso. Waters was runner-up with Richie Stanaway in 2017 at the beachside circuit, and recorded an eighth-place finish in 2018.
Recorded in 2011 in his previous stint with Tickford Racing, Will Davison (No. 23 Milwaukee Racing Ford Mustang) owns the Gold Coast race lap record of 1m10.09s. With brother Alex as his co-driver, the 23Red Racing duo has high hopes for their home event in Queensland.
Brisbane-raised Lee Holdsworth (No. 5 The Bottle-O Ford Mustang) celebrates his 200th career Supercars round this weekend, becoming the 17th driver in the sport’s history to eclipse the milestone. Joined by rookie co-driver Thomas Randle, making his third round start, the pair will look to build on a ninth-place finish at Bathurst two weeks ago.
On-track action for the Gold Coast 600 commences Friday with a trio of practice sessions. Saturday and Sunday each feature a Top Ten Shootout and 300-kilometre race, making up Races 26 and 27 of the Virgin Australia Supercars season.
No. 5 The Bottle-O Ford Mustang
“It’s a bit hard to believe this is my 200th round, to be honest I feel pretty lucky, not a lot of guys have gotten to that mark. We definitely feel like we’ve got unfinished business after Bathurst, we felt we were in position to put The Bottle-O car on the podium, so we’re determined to get up the front this weekend. I grew up in Queensland, and I’ll have some friends and family at the track, so hopefully Tommy and I give them something to celebrate.”
“I’m really looking forward to going to the Gold Coast, it’s probably one of my favourite rounds of the year even though I’ve only raced there twice in open wheelers and never in a Supercar. I notched three wins the last time I was there, in F4, but it’s going to be another challenge this weekend, learning how to take the kerbs in the Mustang. I think we have a really strong package, Lee’s on top of his game, and I think we had quite a good showing at Bathurst. Hopefully we can have a really strong weekend, I’m not going to have much track time prior to the race, with just the one co-driver session on Friday, but I’m up for the challenge.”
No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Mustang
“The good thing about such a quick turnaround after Bathurst is we don’t have time to worry about what happened at Bathurst, so we’ve all pretty much refocused straight to Goldy. We had a positive debrief last week, and cooked up a barbecue for the team to try and help lift the spirits a bit. I really like the Gold Coast track, it’s pretty tight and physical and always a challenge, and we’ve been pretty strong there the past couple years. We’ll try and keep that up this weekend, and it’d be great to get back on the podium.”
“I’m certainly looking forward to getting back on track, and finally putting Bathurst behind us. Obviously we didn’t get the result we were hoping for in the ‘1000,’ so we really want to get one this weekend. The car was really fast at Bathurst, and Cam’s been great on the street circuits this year, so if we can pull it all together hopefully we’ll be right in the mix up on the Gold Coast.”
No. 55 Supercheap Auto Ford Mustang
“After the way Bathurst went we all want to get back on track, so I think we’re all looking forward to the weekend. Obviously Goldy’s been pretty good for us the last couple years, so hopefully we roll off well and keep up the fight. It’d be really good to come back and have a strong weekend all around for the team.”
“We’re definitely ready to get back on track and move on from Bathurst, there wasn’t much time to dwell on what happened, we just had to refocus for the Gold Coast, which is another big event for us. Obviously Chazzy and I had a great weekend there last year, I finally got one of those surfboards, and we could have gone two-for-two if Mother Nature didn’t have a say on Sunday. If we start off strong on Friday we can hopefully carry it through the weekend, which would be a good way to bounce back, so that’s what we’ll try to do.”
No. 23 Milwaukee Racing Ford Mustang
“It’s always great to be racing on the Gold Coast. It’s a bit of a home event for Alex and I, living up here, always has a huge crowd, and it’s an awesome event for the sport. I’ve had some rotten luck there in recent years, but last year was pretty good for us, and obviously the Tickford cars have gone well there, so hopefully we’re on for a good weekend. Bathurst obviously didn’t go quite to plan for us, but we’re pretty confident in our car and feel we can be in the hunt this weekend to take home some surfboards.”
“I’m definitely looking forward to the weekend; it’s a good opportunity for us to go out and try to make up for a tough outing at Bathurst. Gold Coast is probably the most scenic track we race at, but it’s really tough. There’s no margin for error, one misjudgement and you’re basically firing into a wall. It’s hard on the cars and on the drivers, but it’s one of the biggest events of the year and has the coolest trophies with those surfboards, so hopefully we can take one home this weekend.”
Tim Edwards, Team Principal
“It’s been a fast but productive week and a half between races. We had a pretty productive debrief, there was plenty to cover, but we learned what we needed and have moved on to the next round. Gold Coast has been a happy hunting ground the last two years, and Chaz and Moff were certainly the dominant car there last year, so we’re fully focused on putting together a strong weekend there. After the disappointment from Bathurst, the best way to reward the team for their hard work would be to bring home some more surfboards, and that’s certainly the aim this week.”
EVENT NAME: Gold Coast 600
DATE: October 25-27
LOCATION: Surfers Paradise, QLD
EVENT NUMBER: 13 of 15
FORMAT: Friday – 3 x 30-min VASC practice, Saturday – 1 x 20-min VASC quali, 1 x Top Ten Shootout, 1 x 102-lap race (300km); Sunday – 1 x 20-min VASC quali, 1 x Top Ten Shootout, 1 x 102-lap race (300km)
CIRCUIT: Surfers Paradise Street Circuit
DESCRIPTION: One of the world’s most picturesque circuits, the Gold Coast 600 takes place on the coast of Surfers Paradise along the Pacific Ocean. The 14-turn street circuit is featured by its high-speed chicanes, launching cars up on two wheels as they barrel through the corners.
TRACK RECORD: 1m10.09s (Will Davison, 2011)
TICKFORD RACING BEST RESULT: 1st – Steven Richards (2009), Mark Winterbottom (2010), Mark Winterbottom/Richard Lyons (2011), Will Davison/Mika Salo (2012), David Reynolds/Dean Canto (2013), Chaz Mostert/Steve Owen (2017), Chaz Mostert/James Moffat (2018)