Blanchard to join Ingall

  • 24/08/2014
  • By Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport
  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship

Repair Management Australia racing has signed talented young gunTim Blanchard to join Russell Ingall for the 2014 V8 SupercarPirtek Enduro Cup.

Blanchard will fill the seat of the #23 Commodore VF alongside Ingall, joining forces at the Wilson Security Sandown 500, Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 and the Castrol Edge Gold Coast 600.

"I'm really excited to be joining Russell and LDM for the Enduro Cup - I think we can be a really competitive combination," Blanchard said.

"Lucas (Dumbrell, team owner) and I went to school together and have been friends for a long time so it is great to be joining his team.

"I also went to university with the team's engineer Brendan Hogan so there are plenty of familiar faces there.

"Russell and LDM have really surprised a few people at how competitive they have been this year and I think we will go into the endurance races with a real chance of some strong results.

"The three endurance races are always really tough but Russell is known to be a fighter so I can't wait to join him and see what we can do.

"I believe the longer distance races will suit us. Russell always excels at these events and LDM are going to Bathurst this year off a top six finish last year."

Blanchard raced full-time last year in the V8 Supercar Championship and has kept his eye in during 2014 with appearances in the Dunlop Series and V8 Utes Series.

The former Australian Formula Ford Champion has plenty of experience in the V8 Supercar Championship and particularly at the Endurance events, having made his debut in 2010 at the Phillip Island 500.

Two-time Bathurst 1000 winner Russell Ingall knows just how important picking the co-driver is.

"It's obviously a major decision picking the co-driver for the three biggest events of the year," 2005 V8 Supercar Champion Ingall said.

"We had looked overseas as there were possibilities there but at the end of the day we're giving someone local another stab at it.

"There's also the possibility that if we come out with a result, we could help rejuvenate his career in motorsport.

"Larry Perkins gave me an opportunity as I had raced overseas, Tim has also given it a swing over there, which I regard highly for anyone that has had a go in that arena."

Repair Management Australia Racing Team Principal Lucas Dumbrell is pleased with the pairing and uniquely, the chance to have a former schoolmate drive for his team.

"It's extra special too because he was a key part of my life post-accident in the rehabilitation stage," Dumbrell said.

"I'm very happy with signing Tim. He showed at the back of last year that he has the pace to run in the top 10 consistently.

"He showed good speed in Townsville and Ipswich and then again at Winton when he tested with us. He surprisingly got up to speed quickly.

"Now, more than ever, the co-drivers need to do extra laps to keep their edge and to be able to push themselves and the car to the maximum.

"With what he has shown I believe that he will be very competitive and will be a great support for Russell in the three endurance races."

RMA Racing plan another test day prior to the Pirtek Enduro Cup,which kick-starts with the Wilson Security Sandown 500 on September 12-14.

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