Silly season: What's next after Brown exit?

14 Aug
Erebus announced last week that Will Brown will depart

As the 2023 Repco Supercars Championship passed its halfway mark, plenty more unfolded in what has proven a dramatic silly season.

Many current full-time drivers are off-contract, with Erebus Motorsport last week announcing the departure of Will Brown.

Brown’s exit from Erebus is set to pave the way for the Queenslander to Triple Eight, with Shane van Gisbergen eyeing a move to NASCAR.

Triple Eight returned serve, saying van Gisbergen is still under contract. However, Erebus and Triple Eight aren’t the only teams in the headlines.

Ahead of this weekend's OTR SuperSprint, Supercars.com takes a look at the key questions needing to be answered for 2024.

What next for Erebus?

Brown’s exit at the end of 2023 opens a prized vacancy at Erebus, which is fighting for both championships this season.

After 19 races, Erebus has won seven races, is first and second in the drivers’ standings, and leads the teams’ championship.

Multiple reports on Monday revealed Jack Le Brocq could be in line for the second Erebus seat.

Le Brocq is out of contract at Matt Stone Racing, which he helped to victory lane for the first time in Darwin in June.

He has an existing relationship with Erebus — he raced for the team in Australian GT as part of its development academy, and also debuted with the team in the 2015 enduros.

Erebus does, however, have form in promoting young guns — they picked up Anton De Pasquale in 2018, and debuted Brown and Brodie Kostecki together in 2021.

The team has ties to Dunlop Series squad Image Racing, and recently handed Gen3 laps to Super2 duo Jay Hanson and Cooper Murray at a Winton evaluation day.

Changes for leading Ford teams?

There are still question marks over how Tickford Racing and Walkinshaw Andretti United will look next season.

Tickford expanded to four cars in 2022, with Cam Waters, James Courtney and Thomas Randle joined by Declan Fraser this year. Waters emerged as a key silly season player, but is set to remain with Tickford.

Tickford also runs two Super2 entries alongside its four main game entries, and also recently opened a new engineering business.


Tickford boss Tim Edwards told media after Townsville that no decision has been made on the team’s structure, after rumours suggested the squad was going to downscale to two cars.

Across Melbourne to WAU, and the second seat alongside Chaz Mostert is also a hot topic, with Fabian Coulthard emerging as a surprise contender during the recent race weekend in Sydney.

Coulthard joined WAU as a co-driver last year, and recently joined WAU Super2 driver Ryan Wood at a Winton evaluation day.

The midfield puzzle

Also in the headlines during the Sydney weekend were David Reynolds and Penrite Racing, with the former linked to Team 18.

Mark Winterbottom is contracted with Team 18 and won in Darwin, but Scott Pye has challenged his decorated teammate all season. Winterbottom narrowly leads both head-to-heads; 10-9 in qualifying, and 11-8 in races.

Reynolds is out of contract at season’s end, having joined the Grove-owned squad in 2021. Penrite Racing called up Matt Payne this season, replacing the retired Lee Holdsworth.

Penrite Racing has clever form with the driver market, signing up Holdsworth in 2022 to hand Payne a full development season in Super2.

The Braeside team has endured a tough 2023, but titles are the target, team owner Stephen Grove saying recently: "What we have to look at is how we get to the championship from here.

"The market should open up at the end of 2024, but are there any opportunities this year? Can Dave do that for us? Can we find someone else that can do that? That's what we're reviewing now."

Dick Johnson Racing has both Anton De Pasquale and Will Davison under lock for 2024, but the former has an existing relationship with the Groves, and could be an option for 2025. All the while, DJR has secured a Bathurst 1000 wildcard for promising teen Kai Allen, who himself is becoming hot property amid his Super2 form.

Nulon Racing is building all the time, recently signing decorated engineer Romy Mayer from Triple Eight, and Stephen Robertson from Penrite Racing as its new Team Manager.

Tim Slade and James Golding are set to stay on, the former joining this season. Golding leads the qualifying head-to-head 13-6, but Slade is ahead in races 13-6.

Le Brocq and Cameron Hill, meanwhile, are both off-contract with MSR, but both drivers have impressed team owner Stone this season.

Then, there’s Blanchard Racing Team, which is readying for a two-car attack on the enduros. Todd Hazelwood joined in 2023, with the team keen on expanding to two cars.

BRT has Aaron Love on its books, with the Perth-born driver racing for the team in Super2, along with a Bathurst 1000 debut in the team’s wildcard alongside the returning Jake Kostecki.

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