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HomeNewsBRT on track to make first Gen3 shakedown

BRT on track to make first Gen3 shakedown

SUPERCARS’ only single-car team looks set to become the first to shake down a Gen3 race car as the 2023 Repco Supercars Championship approaches.
 
Blanchard Racing Team boss Tim Blanchard is currently in Queensland sourcing the final components needed to have his CoolDrive Mustang on track at Winton on February 1.
 
Queensland teams including homologation squads Triple Eight and Dick Johnson Racing were slated to run at Ipswich on January 30 but have now delayed that by at least a week.

Significant doubt has also lingered over the planned February 1 date for southern-based teams as they await the supply of control parts.
 
Melbourne-based BRT stole a march on its opposition by showing off a near-complete car in early January and is pushing ahead with getting its Todd Hazelwood-driven machine mobile.

The CoolDrive Mustang as pictured on January 5. Pic: CoolDrive Auto Parts

“We’re still in good shape to be testing on Wednesday (February 1),” Blanchard told V8 Sleuth.
 
“It just depends how a few things go over the weekend, but we’re pretty confident as it stands at the moment that we should make it.
 
“We’re still waiting on two or three components which I am picking up as we speak in Queensland and then I’ll be flying home with them over the weekend.
 
“As long as they fit the car and it runs up properly we should be fine.”
 
Blanchard’s comments come on the same day that outspoken Erebus boss Barry Ryan declared it impossible to have a car with all the “correct Gen3 approved parts” complete by the test date.
 
Although not wishing to be drawn into a slanging match over the situation, Blanchard denied his car will be fitted with any dummy parts for its debut.  

“Everyone’s got different business models and different approaches to it,” he said of potentially getting ahead of BRT’s opposition.
 
“I think being a one car team, there’s some benefits attached to that, but we’ve also worked pretty hard over the last few months to get into this position.
 
“Once the car’s on the track, we’ve only got one car so our data acquisition will be a lot slower than some of the bigger teams, but we’re trying to give ourselves as much time as possible to iron out any issues that might arise.
 
“I think some of the Ford components have been available before some of the Chev components which has probably helped as well, which is out of our control, we’re just fortunate to be in a Ford.” 
 
BRT’s parent company CoolDrive is a major supplier of control parts for the new Gen3 cars, but Blanchard headed off any suggestions of favouritism.
 
“As far as I’m aware the components that are holding people up aren’t coming from CoolDrive,” he said.
 
“Any part that is on our car has been available for the same amount of time to every team.
 
“We’ve been very transparent in that whole process and making sure that as soon as any component arrives and is available to BRT it’s available to every other team.”

The 2023 Repco Supercars Championship is set to kick-off with the Thrifty Newcastle 500 on March 10-12.

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