BRAD Jones Racing has made a late change to its Repco Bathurst 1000 driver line-up amid ongoing complications caused by Australian state border restrictions.
Queensland-based Ash Walsh, who was scheduled to share the #4 SCT Logistics entry with Jack Smith, has pulled out of the Great Race.
He will be replaced by Sydney-based David Wall, who will make his first Supercars Championship race start since the 2017 Gold Coast 600.
Walsh works full-time as an accountant and says he could not afford to be locked out of his home state, which does not plan to fully open its borders until December 17.
He had been a BJR co-driving mainstay before missing out last year due to border issues and the timing of an accounting exam.
“It’s a shame that the Queensland border restrictions are forcing our hands on this but spending a month or so away just meant it’s unfortunately not possible for me to participate this year,” said Walsh.
“I wish Jack, David and the team well and all the very best for Bathurst. I’ll be cheering them on from Queensland.”
Wall is no stranger to BJR after a stint as a co-driver in 2010 and 2011 before competing as a full-time driver in 2012 and 2013.
The Carrera Cup regular will have his first steer of Smith’s ZB Commodore during a test at Sydney Motorsport Park today.
“It’s a unique situation and timeframe and I’ll be joining the team for the co-driver test day today and the session at the Sydney SuperNight event this weekend,” Wall said.
“I’ll need to get my head around racing a Supercar again but I’m really looking forward to the challenge at hand and competing at the biggest race of the year with Brad Jones Racing and SCT.”
BJR’s other entries are due to be shared by Nick Percat/Dale Wood, Todd Hazelwood/Dean Fiore and Macauley Jones/Chris Pither.
The Repco Bathurst 1000 will take place on December 5.