Wilson on brink of his first world title
SUPERCARS star David Reynolds will spearhead Erebus Motorsport’s return to the Bathurst 12- hour endurance race in 2019.
Reynolds will join Luke Youlden and amateur driver Yasser Shahin to contest the Pro- Am class in a Mercedes AMG GT3 in the February race at Mount Panorama. Reynolds and Youlden paired up to win the Bathurst 1000 Supercars race in 2017 in an Erebus car.
The pair looked set to repeat that success at this year’s race before Reynolds suffered debilitating cramps with just 26 laps to go.
A heartbroken Reynolds lost the lead to eventual winner Craig Lowndes before having to hand over to Youlden for the race’s closing laps.
Yesterday’s announcement marks a return to GT racing for Erebus, who won the 12hour outright in 2013.
“The event holds a special place in the hearts of our team,” Erebus chief executive Barry Ryan said.
“It was the stage of our first big victory and somewhere we never finished outside the top five.
“We always go there with high expectations.
“We want to push for the Pro- Am victory but with the speed Yasser shows as an amateur driver, also give the outright victory a go.”
Erebus aim to test in midJanuary ahead of the event. RETIRING Joel Parkinson says it’s a matter of when, not if, Julian Wilson joins him as a world surfing champion.
The Queensland pair will brave the famed Banzai Pipeline in Hawaii’s season- ending World Surf League event from tomorrow morning.
If Wilson, equal second on the series ladder, wins the Billabong Pipe Masters and leader Gabriel Medina doesn’t make the final the 30- year- old will win a maiden world title.
Parkinson, 37, will farewell the tour after 18 years at the break he conquered to win his lone title six years ago.
The Gold Coast surfer knows how hard it is to win such a title but says Wilson is ready.
“He’s in his prime and I think between 30- 33 is the best time when you still have your youth but you’ve been on tour for some time.”
Wilson won the season- opener on the Gold Coast despite having a shoulder injury and his round nine win in France shot him into title contention.
He is the only non- Brazilian to win a leg this year, with Medina and Filipe Toledo ( equal second with Wilson) both more than capable of carving up the Ha- waiian break to secure the title. But the unpredictable nature of Pipe means there are no certainties next week, while the withdrawal of defending world champion John John Florence is another plot twist.
Parkinson can win a fourth Triple Crown of Surfing ( an event made up of two lower- level Hawaiian lead- up events and the Pipe Masters) and ideally help his mate out by defeating a Brazilian on the way to a strong result.
“That would be a huge scalp, it’d be something,” Parkinson said of beating Medina or Toledo.