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Hazelwood relishes maiden Trans Am outing

TODD Hazelwood has lapped up his first taste of a Trans Am car, as a diverse season awaits the former Supercars full-timer.

Hazelwood is yet to officially announce any 2024 campaigns, besides his appointment as a driver coach for Wes McDougall’s The Complete Race Driver company.

The 2017 Super2 champion did however head to Queensland Raceway last Friday to steer a Ford Mustang Trans Am car – and reported very positively about the experience.

“It was my first go in one and it was a lot of fun actually,” Hazelwood told V8 Sleuth.

“You have to be pretty aggressive behind the wheel. Trying to maximise a cross-ply tyre is something that I haven’t done before behind the wheel of a race car, so very unique I guess compared to what I’ve been used to in a Supercar.

“So a few different key traits there but it’s still got plenty of power, a H-pattern gearbox, it’s a lot of fun.

“It was a stinking hot day at QR but I was actually surprised by how much grip the car has and it puts its power down well. I really enjoyed it.”

Long tipped to join Erebus Motorsport for the 2024 Supercars enduros as Jack Le Brocq’s co-driver, Hazelwood admitted he would be keen on further Trans Am opportunities.

“I think for me, a big thing with utilising a gap year this year with not being full-time in the sport is to be trying to drive something that still has some relevance to Supercars,” he explained.

“It still is V8 powered, they’re probably under-tyred for the power that they have got and they move around a lot; that sort of echoes what a Supercar is all about as well.”

The 28-year-old, who is eyeing a return to the 2025 Supercars grid, also has his eyes set on bitumen and dirt karting and potentially some speedway.

“Karting is great because it keeps me sharp and doing just a couple of low-key club meetings and race events in southeast Queensland here, I really enjoy getting back in the kart,” he added.

“It’s just pure racing. You work on your own program, you’re making your own set-up changes and you’re in full control of what your final outcome will be come race day.

“I really enjoy that aspect of it and it’s a great way to enjoy racing and take away the pressure from it all.

“So doing some karting, and I’m in talks with potentially trying to get myself on the dirt circuit as well, so whether that’s 410s or maybe something else is still undecided, but I have got a few irons in the fire.”

Hazelwood’s 2023 Supercars squad, the Blanchard Racing Team, will field James Courtney and Aaron Love this season.

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