Scott McLaughlin's new Supercars co-driver revealed in surprise swap
Search Driven for vehicles for sale
In a surprise move, it's been announced that Scott McLaughlin's long-time Supercars championship co-driver, Alex Premat, is departing the DJR Team Penske fold for next year. In his place, the team has announced that former Brad Jones Racing pilot Tim Slade will take up the role for the 2020 PIRTEK Enduro Cup alongside the defending title winner and Bathurst 1000 champion.
“I couldn’t be happier to be joining the Shell V-Power Racing Team for the 2020 season,” said Slade. “This is the best team in the sport, and I can’t wait to get behind the wheel of one of these Mustangs. Driving for names like Penske and Johnson is not something I take lightly, and I’m very much looking forward to working with the team next year.”
Slade comes off a difficult year with Albury-based BJR, having been involved in numerous incidents on his way to 15th in the championship order. Still, his season was book-ended with memorable podium results at the Australian Grand Prix and at the Newcastle series finale.
The announcement ends a streak of partnerships between Premat and McLaughlin. The duo started out as rookie teammates with Garry Rogers Motorsport in 2013, before uniting as co-drivers for 2014 and 2015 as the team switched to Volvo S60s. Premat was then poached by the Red Bull Holden Racing Team in 2016 to partner Shane van Gisbergen, before returning to McLaughlin's side for the last three years with DJR Team Penske.
“Firstly, I’d like to thank Alex Premat for his time here at the team and for his contribution over the last three years,” added DJR Team Penske Managing Director Ryan Story. “In our sport, sometimes difficult decisions must be made, and this was one of those decisions.
“With his recent history as a full-time driver, we know that Tim will be able to deliver great things in a Shell V-Power Racing Team Mustang. And Tony has been a big part of our team for many years, so we are excited to have him for another season.
“With both drivers being based in Australia, we intend to have them compete in all additional driver sessions next year, and attend all of our team test days so they are fully integrated into our program. We look forward to the 2020 season.”