Kiwi young gun denied V8 debut by Australian Covid-19 restrictions
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One of New Zealand's most promising up-and-coming tin-top race drivers has been forced to sit out his debut in a Supercars Championship series.
Current New Zealand Toyota 86 Series championship leader Peter Vodanovich was set to race at this weekend's Sydney Motorsport Park Supercars event in the 'Super3' feeder category, but Covid-19 regulations concerning people travelling from overseas have meant his start in the series has been postponed.
“It’s really unfortunate we’re unable to compete for the championship, though I am still really hopeful to get over to Australia for the last two rounds,” Vodanovich said.
The Super3 series involves older-generation Supercars, and follows the iconic series to certain events on the calendar. Former champions include Bathurst 1000 podium-getter Taz Douglas, recently announced Bathurst 1000 co-driver Broc Feeney, and current Brad Jones Racing Supercars driver Jack Smith.
The 19-year-old Aucklander scored a drive with Erebus Motorsport's new young driver academy — the same team that runs the Supercars entries of David Reynolds and Anton De Pasquale, as well as the Super2 entries of Will Brown and Jordan Boys.
“Erebus has been great about the border challenges and we are hopeful another opportunity will come up in Australia at some stage later in the year. I am very grateful for the opportunity and thankful all our hard work has paid off, and excited to see what I can achieve under the Erebus Academy banner when things align.”
Along with winning races New Zealand's 86 series and showing good pace in Australia's similar sister class, Vodanovich has also spent a lot of time being trained by the likes of Paul Morris and De Pasquale at the former's Norwell Motorplex motorsport facility on the Gold Coast.
“Similar to Anton, Peter [Vodanovich] was introduced to us by Paul Morris and we’ve seen what a determined young man he is, as well as a standout racer,” said Erebus Motorsport CEO Barry Ryan. “Like all aspects of motorsport, things don’t always go to plan, but Peter can learn from this experience.
“He has shown he isn’t afraid to forge his own path as he did by racing simulators. That has paid off for him and he hasn’t let a set- back in the first round of the Toyota 86 this year affect him at all. In fact, to see his results since then, they’ve been outstanding and we look forward to seeing what he can achieve in the future.”