Lindbom to select wild card co-driver

  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 29/07/2014
  • By V8 Supercars

Running two wild card entries set for the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, aspiring V8 Supercars Championship team Dragon Motor Racing is looking to make a positive impression at Mount Panorama in October.

Headed by businessman Tony Klein - who has loved motorsport since his early days - the goal is for Dragon to provide in-roads for talented up-and-coming drivers looking to get to the top-level in motor racing.

Dragon has secured both of Garry Rogers Motorsport's new generation Commodores, after the Championship team has switched to running Volvos for 2014, and is maintaining a strong relationship with the team to further develop in the coming months leading up to the October event.

Dunlop Series driver Kristian Lindbom has been locked in as one driver of four - after he and Klein connected through Facebook, believe it or not - and has now been tasked with selecting his co-driver for the ever important Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.

Given he will be a rookie in the endurance classic, 24-year old Lindbom's non-negotiable in the selection process is someone who has experience at the mountain.

"It will be someone who has done the race before," Lindbom told v8supercars.com.au.

"I've never done the race, but that's the exact reason why I need someone who has, to teach me what to do.

"All my downfalls of having not had that experience, I guess, will be a little bit of the responsibility for them, it will be to teach me all those things so we get to Sunday.

"Everyone who has contacted us deserves to have some sort of drive. But this one, it's always going to be the best person to fit with the team.

"And that's where Tony's given it to me to have the responsibility of saying this is who we're going to have."

Just the magnitude of the event is something Lindbom flagged as a new experience for him.

"It's a huge lead-up, I'm sure I'll learn so much from Thursday to Sunday, I'll be a completely different driver. And then we do the race itself - it's like two races in one, the race to actually get to the start finish line and then to finish the 1000km.

"So I'm going to learn a huge amount in the build-up and then in the race. Strategy - I've never done a pit stop. We'll see how that goes.

"So we'll be doing as much practice as we can and getting the right guidance from the people who have done it before."

Lindbom and Klein confirmed a handful of drivers were still being considered, with former full-timer and 2013 Jack Daniel's co-driver Karl Reindler's name in the mix. The team is planning to announce Lindbom's co-driver after the weekend's Coates Hire Ipswich 400.

Lindbom is pleased with the level of involvement he has in the team, also giving input on the Dragon livery for the big race, with Klein trusting his judgment.

"Most drivers will just drive, but I'm involved on multiple levels and bringing my experience into it," he said.

Given the team's relationship with GRM - and Garry Rogers' ability to spot talented unknown drivers - he has also provided advice on drivers, as well as crew, which is still to be established.

"I've spoken to Garry because he has been able to pick up so many good drivers, he's obviously a good judge of talent. He's been able to really help me and say, this person's going to be good at this," Lindbom explained.

"All the people we've narrowed it down to, they're all good at something. It's just what's going to fit our program. I need someone that's going to be very experienced, has done the race before and teach me what to do. And we go from there."

Klein is excited about the level of interest Dragon has already received, with enquiries from people around the world about being involved in Bathurst.

"I want to open the doors for these young drivers," Klein told v8supercars.com.au.

"I had a similar problem when I was young - I got my CAMS licence, I wanted to get into Formula Holden and the doors are closed. It's not just about money, back then there was no information."

The team is expecting one Commodore to be ready to run by the end of August, the second in mid to late September.

Dragon is allowed three test days for the cars in the lead-up to the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.

Stay tuned for more information on the wild card entries.

Stay In The Know
Sign up to the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship Newsletter