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Motosport

Heat on Supercars leader’s new co-driver

SVG shines, Whincup crashes in Supercars

The pressure is already mounting on Supercars series leader’s new co-driver Earl Bamber.

But the two-time Le Mans 24 Hour winner reckons he wouldn’t have it any other way after successful testing at Queensland Raceway ahead of the opening enduro – next weekend’s Sandown 500.

Bamber faces the daunting task of stepping up as co-driver for Holden gun Shane van Gisbergen in this year’s three high stakes enduro rounds.

Any slip up will also cost teammate van Gisbergen dearly in the title race – and the flying Kiwi can’t afford any mistakes after snatching a 19-point championship lead over Ford’s Scott McLaughlin.

Bamber admitted he was already feeling the heat after getting his first look at his Red Bull Racing Commodore at the Ipswich test track on Wednesday.

Not that he had any complaints.

“When you are with Red Bull they expect to be in front, they expect to win the races,” Kiwi Bamber said.

“There was always that added pressure but the goal was to be in a top car. They have been travelling awesome and I can’t wait.”

Van Gisbergen was happy with his good mate Bamber’s progress but did not want to speculate on how their partnership may influence his championship chances.

“I haven’t even thought about it. I don’t predict stuff, it’s about preparation,” van Gisbergen said.


“This test is a big chance to get the car right for Sandown.

“We’ve been doing pit stops all day. It’s all the preparation stuff that is key.

“We will focus on the basics first.”

Bamber was one of the international co-drivers who savoured the test day at Queensland Raceway on Wednesday.

Others included US-based Frenchman Alex Premat who reunited with McLaughlin at DJR Team Penske.

A former full-time Supercars driver, Premat took out last year’s final enduro the Gold Coast 600 in his last start with McLaughlin.

Seven-time Supercars champion Jamie Whincup and Holden teammate Craig Lowndes were also among those at the test day before the Sandown 500 on September 16.


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