Brab­ham thrilled with his tri­fecta of starts

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Motorsport - MARK HINCH­LIFFE

A HOST of in­ter­na­tional driv­ers will com­pete at the next three rounds of the V8 Su­per­cars, but only one will com­pete in all three events.

David Brab­ham, Le Mans 24-hour win­ner and youngest son of triple For­mula One cham­pion Sir Jack Brab­ham, will part­ner Alex Dav­i­son in all three rounds.

Brab­ham has tested the Ir­win Fal­con he will be rac­ing with Dav­i­son and says they have a ‘‘big ad­van­tage’’ at the Gold Coast race next month by first com­pet­ing in the two en­durance rounds at Phillip Is­land and Bathurst.

‘‘It’s re­ally good for us to get an un­der­stand­ing of how each other works, for me to un­der­stand how the car works, be­cause this is a very dif­fer­ent an­i­mal to what I’ve raced reg­u­larly in Amer­ica,’’ the cur­rent Amer­i­can Le Mans se­ries leader says.

‘‘I think it’s go­ing to be a fan­tas­tic time for us be­cause I reckon we’ll have a good ad­van­tage.’’

Brab­ham joins a host of in­ter­na­tional stars for the Gold Coast round, in­clud­ing three-time Indy 500 win­ner He­lio Cas­tron­eves of Brazil, IndyCar se­ries leader Will Power of Toowoomba, World Tour­ing Car racer Alain Menu of Switzer­land and three-times World Tour­ing Car cham­pion Andy Pri­aulx of the UK.

‘‘I think it’s go­ing to be the world’s great­est tour­ing car race,’’ Brab­ham says.

‘‘It will be a fan­tas­tic event. Ev­ery­one is talk­ing about it.

‘‘All my friends who race over­seas are talk­ing about it. They want to get in on it.’’

Roland Dane, boss of V8 Su­per­cars cham­pi­ons TeamVoda­fone, con­firms that the Gold Coast race is big news in Euro­pean rac­ing cir­cles where he has spent some of the nine-week mid-sea­son break.

‘‘Peo­ple are ask­ing what is go­ing on on the Gold Coast,’’ he says.

‘‘The re­cent an­nounce­ment of Cas­tron­eves has been big news. It’s put the se­ries in the in­ter­na­tional spot­light. Peo­ple are say­ing, ‘How can you get these in­ter­na­tional stars and the Beach Boys there?’ ’’

The Gold Coast cir­cuit is fa­mous for race crashes and Brab­ham ad­mits any­thing can hap­pen.

‘‘Hope­fully there’s not a lot of car­nage,’’ he says. ‘‘With all of those guys out there try­ing to fight for top po­si­tion, it’s go­ing to be in­ter­est­ing.

‘‘Ev­ery­one will be out there push­ing, learn­ing as much as they can lead­ing up to the races, start­ing the race — go­ing through the whole for­mat is go­ing to be so new to them.’’

Ex­cited: the 2009 Le Mans 24-hour race-win­ning Peu­geot of David Brab­ham.

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