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Ex-Ambrose engineer returns to Stone fold

THE engineer who guided Marcos Ambrose to a double dose of Supercars championship glory has returned to his roots in a crucial off-season signing.

V8 Sleuth has learnt Paul Forgie started this week in a full-time capacity at Matt Stone Racing, where he will act as race engineer for rookie recruit Cameron Hill.

MSR is run by Matt Stone, the son of Jim who co-owned the popular Stone Brothers Racing.

It was with SBR that Forgie combined with a young Marcos Ambrose to win both the 2003 and 2004 titles.

He was also on the cans in the early stages of James Courtney and Shane van Gisbergen’s careers at SBR, both of whom have gone on to become champions.

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Forgie has spent recent years working across multiple series, including race engineering Jack Smith in Supercars and Jett Johnson in Trans Am.

Now, the Gold Coaster will be called on to help Hill, who won the 2021 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia title and enjoyed a strong Super2 season last year with Triple Eight.

When approached by V8 Sleuth, Hill spoke with excitement about the chance to team up with Forgie.

Cameron Hill with MSR’s first Gen3 chassis. Pic: Supplied

“I’m really looking forward to working with Paul,” said the 26-year-old.

“Obviously he is a guy that’s got tremendous experience in motorsport and Supercars, so I think it is going to be really good to have him there to pick his brain and guide me through my rookie season.

“It’s cool that there’s a touch of familiarity for him and Matt and the rest of the team; obviously there is a lot of history there so for him it is a bit of a homecoming whereas for me it is all new and exciting.”

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With more control parts than ever in the Gen3 era, the importance of the driver/engineer relationship is set to rise.

“It’s going to be important to be on the front foot and I think if you can get your head around the new car, you’ll be able to get some strong results early,” Hill added.

“I’m sure over the course of the year everyone will begin to start to work it out, but for sure at the start of the year it is going to be a bit of an arms race for us to all get on top of it.”

There will be stability on the other side of the MSR garage, with Jack Bellotti continuing as Jack Le Brocq’s race engineer.

The Yatala squad is believed to be releasing a statement about its full engineering structure for the 2023 Repco Supercars Championship in the coming weeks.

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