Cam Waters feels "sharp" after speedway summer
Tickford star tested with Ford team at Winton on Wednesday
Waters won three races last season, including two of last four
It’s full steam ahead to Bathurst for Cam Waters after a crucial pre-season test and busy summer on speedways, which has the Ford star feeling “sharp” heading into 2024.
Waters and teammate Thomas Randle rolled out for pre-season testing at Winton Motor Raceway on Wednesday, two weeks before the Thrifty Bathurst 500.
The Mildura native looms as a championship contender once again, but 2024 offers a big chance for Waters and Tickford to break their title droughts amid a raft of change.
Waters and Chaz Mostert have already been cast as title favourites by James Courtney in the wake of of Brodie Kostecki and Shane van Gisbergen’s absence.
Kostecki won’t race at the opening round, while van Gisbergen has shifted to NASCAR, handing Blue Oval stars Waters and Mostert a big swing at title glory.
The title remains Waters’ goal, but a solid test day — which was a chance to understand the new aerodynamic package — was just the beginning.
For Waters, starting the season at Mount Panorama is an added bonus, given he has claimed three poles and four podiums at the iconic circuit across sprint and enduro events.
For Tickford, starting strongly is key given the team has downscaled from four to two cars, with the team without a championship since 2015, and enduro victory since 2018. Critically, the team enters 2024 under new leadership, with experienced sports administrator Simon Brookhouse replacing long-time Tickford boss Tim Edwards.
“It’s a very different Tickford Racing with two cars,” Waters told Supercars.com at Winton.
“Super pumped to get into the season with Tommy and the team, and see what we can do.
“I love Bathurst, it’ll be cool to start the season there. Race wins, poles, want to win the championship, that’s the goal.
“Just got to have a good day today, make sure we learn all the changes in the off-season and start the season well."
A bumper summer racing sprintcars has helped Waters enter his ninth season with Tickford feeling “sharp” and ready for the new season, which commences on February 23-25.
The 29-year-old is expected to be partnered by James Moffat for the enduros for a fourth season, with Moffat trackside with Tickford on Wednesday.
Randle, meanwhile, could be joined by Tyler Everingham, who lapped the #55 Ford at Wednesday’s test. Dubbo native Everingham raced with the team in the 2023 enduros, albeit with Declan Fraser, who has joined Brad Jones Racing.
“I didn’t really get a break, spent all summer racing the sprintcar, which was awesome,” Waters said.
“Had so much fun, and lots of seat time. I’m feeling sharp, just want to get back into the Supercar and see if I can remember how to drive it.
“But yeah, it was a good off-season."
Tickets for the Thrifty Bathurst 500 are on sale on Supercars.com and Ticketek.com.