Ludo Lacroix joined PremiAir Nulon Racing
Decorated engineer left DJR in off-season
Peter Xiberras-owned squad also signed Mirko De Rosa
The signing of decorated tech guru Ludo Lacroix is already being felt at PremiAir Nulon Racing, with James Golding citing a newfound “confidence” at the team.
The youngest team on the grid landed the highly sought-after signature of Lacroix in one of the key off-track moves in the off-season.
Lacroix recently left Dick Johnson Racing after seven years with the Ford team, having been a key figure its its return to glory in the DJR Penske years.
Come 2024, and he will be with Peter Xiberras’ squad, which has also recruited engineer Mirko De Rosa, formerly of Blanchard Racing Team and Erebus Motorsport.
The team has been in flux on- and off-track since its took over Team Sydney ahead of the 2022 season, with Golding joining midway through the year.
After bringing on Nulon naming rights last year, the team has since settled on Stephen Robertson as Team Manager, with Golding and Tim Slade staying on for 2024.
However, Golding believes the latest batch of new blood could be the tonic for the Arundel-based squad to end its trophy wait.
“It’s been fantastic to have new people onboard,” Golding told Supercars.com at Wednesday's pre-season test day at Queensland Raceway.
“Ludo and Mirko have been working really well together. It’s really boosted the whole team.
“We started off small at the start, and we can see it building and building. You get to the first test day and look around, it’s chalk and cheese to how we were compared to last year.
“It gives the drivers and everyone else in the team a lot of confidence, but it’s still going to take time, and get used to working with each other.
“We’re all focused on the one goal. We’ve just got to dig in, and hopefully we get there.”
There were several glimpses of potential, with Golding and Slade scoring top 10s and reached Shootouts, headlined by Golding's efforts in Bathurst.
However, despite the Xiberras-owned team rolling through the year full of hope, but ended it without silverware. Only PremiAir and BRT failed to score at least one podium last season.
However, with the smarts of Lacroix in tow, Golding believes that could change in 2024.
“We had a few good races last year, and a lot of pace throughout the season,” Golding added.
“It’s going to be about getting that consistency. We know we’re sort of close, but if we get the consistency, the podium’s definitely in sight."
PremiAir Nulon Racing also used Wednesday's test day to offer 20 Horizons College students to get closer to the action. The students are completing automotive qualifications as part of their senior studies at the independent Special Assistance School based in Caboolture.
Established in 2014, Horizons College of Learning and Enrichment assists young people across Years 7 to 12 for whom mainstream education has not meaningful.
Horizons College students had previously enjoyed key learning experiences with PremiAir Nulon Racing on six occasions.
"I have no doubt that future members of our great sport were here with us today, and it gives me and the entire team immense pride to be able to play a small part in inspiring and educating these young minds on all things Supercars,” Roberston said.
“We always need more great people in motorsport, so we take any chance to help foster enthusiasm in the upcoming generation very seriously, so of course we were very pleased to have this amazing group of students with us at Queensland Raceway today from Horizons College.
“We were certainly very impressed with their keen interest and considered questions - you never know, perhaps we met some future PremiAir Nulon Racing mechanics, engineers or drivers here today.”
PremiAir Nulon Racing will reveal its new-look Camaros on Wednesday February 14 ahead of the season-opening Thrifty Bathurst 500. Tickets are on sale now.