WAU's Bathurst focus after 'kick in the guts'

19 Sep
WAU looks to Great Race after Sandown nightmare
  • WAU Fords 22nd, 23rd in Sandown 500

  • Mostert car damaged early, before picking up penalty

  • Both WAU Fords disqualified from Friday practice

Walkinshaw Andretti United is doubling down on its preparations for Bathurst after a “kick in the guts” at Sandown, says Team Principal Bruce Stewart.

The Penrite Oil Sandown 500 didn’t go to plan for WAU, with Chaz Mostert/Lee Holdsworth and Nick Percat/Fabian Coulthard classified 22nd and 23rd respectively.

Both WAU Fords finished a lap off the pace, with the lead #25 Mobil 1 Optus Mustang picking up damage in the opening laps.

With Holdsworth behind the wheel, the #25 underwent three pit stops during the first Safety Car period as mechanics fought to remove damaged rear bodywork.

Mostert was also penalised late on after a clash with Declan Fraser, with the 2021 Bathurst winner now 521 points from the series lead.

The two-time Bathurst winner remains the highest ranked Ford driver, but lost fifth in the standings to Brad Jones Racing driver Andre Heimgartner, who finished fifth on Sunday.


“What [Sandown] has done is doubled-down on the focus for Bathurst,” said Stewart.

“It’s a kick in the guts that ensures we will doing everything we can for the big one.

“Clearly we struggled with car set-up all weekend.

“We threw a lot at it, but the difficulty with the Gen3 car is that the driver doesn’t have the ability to manipulate the set-up through the race with the anti-roll bars.

“So, when you start with a difficult car then you cannot tune it up through the race.”

WAU started the weekend on the back foot, with both cars disqualified from Friday’s Practice 1 for using the incorrect drop gear ratio.

It was a far brighter weekend on the Super2 side of things for WAU, with Ryan Wood winning Race 1 and the Dunlop Series round, while Zach Bates recorded his first podium.

Mostert/Holdsworth will aim to repeat their 2021 Bathurst victory on October 5-8, with the 60th anniversary running of the Repco Bathurst 1000.

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