Richie Stanaway locks in solo Supercar debut
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Richie Stanaway will make his Supercars solo race debut later this month when he pilots one of the Prodrive Racing Ford Supercars at Sydney Motorsport Park in the Dunlop Super2 series.
Stanaway made an impressive debut as a co-driver last year and returns again in 2017, this time to partner with Cameron Waters in the endurance races at Sandown, Bathurst and the Gold Coast.
However, Sydney's Super2 event will mark the Kiwi's maiden races in the category as a solo driver and will provide vital additional experience heading into the Enduro Cup.
"It is going to be a great opportunity for me to get some racing mileage without the pressure of sharing the car with another driver in the main series," Stanaway said of his Super2 outing.
"Racing in Sydney means I will come into this year's enduro campaign a lot better prepared than I was last year, so I am grateful for the opportunity and quite keen to see how I stack up against all the other young guys.
"I've done a decent amount of testing miles now but you can never simulate a racing environment so it is going to be good to get more race miles under my belt. It also makes it a bit easier when you know it is only your own race result at stake and don't need to take into consideration another driver's race or championship."
The 25-year-old will race with support from Actron Air, MEGA Fuels and All Safe, with a full car livery and list of commercial partners to be unveiled next week.
Stanaway has recently returned from competing in the famed Le Mans 24-Hour and is a former winner of the Monaco GP2 (now F2) race and won the 2011 German F3 series.
His debut drive at last year's Sandown 500, where he impressed in wet conditions, cemented his pedigree with Prodrive Racing Team Principal, Tim Edwards.
"Getting Richie back was a no-brainer after his efforts last year in what was not only his debut with the team, but also his first ever Supercars races," Edwards said.
"His vast experience and success overseas counts for a lot and we expected him to deliver, though to do what he did at Sandown in very difficult conditions, in his first ever race, that showed his potential.
"Entering him in the Super2 event in Sydney will give him vital additional track time, plenty more races and a chance to practice starts and further hone his race craft in a Supercar.
"It's a free event for him given he's not contesting the championship. There will be no pressure which is rare for a racing driver so we are all looking forward to what he can do.
"Super2 is the perfect platform to bring through the next generation of talent. We've had success with Chaz, Cam and Garry previously and intend to continue to foster new talent through the category next year and beyond."
Stanaway will pilot the #6 PRA Super2 Ford in Sydney but will first drive his new mount at a test day on Tuesday, 8 August at Winton Motor Raceway in northern Victoria.