NEW OWNER, OLD CAR SET TO JOIN BATHURST SUPER3 FIELD

The late Ron Searle at the helm of the Phoenix Motorsport Commodore at Wakefield Park, 2002. Photo: an1images.com / Dirk Klynsmith.

A VS COMMODORE V8 Supercar originally built almost 20 years ago will make its first start at Mount Panorama since 2002 in the next round of the Super3 Series, due to be held alongside the Dunlop Super2 Series at Bathurst next month.

Paul Boschert will line-up in the main support class for the Bathurst 1000 driving the recently purchased Holden Commodore VS that he secured from its previous Queensland owner.

Boschert and his Weldcraft Motorsport team are currently conducting a major rebuild on the car, including engine, gearbox, differential, suspension and brakes to get it ready for the Mount Panorama event.

The VS Commodore was originally built in 2001 by Phoenix Motorsport for the late Ron Searle to compete. The car started its life using much of the running gear of the ex-Lansvale Smash Repairs Commodore VP that rolled in Don Pulver’s hands at Sandown in 1998. 

The car is the last-ever VS model Supercar ever built and is now based at Weldcraft Motorsport’s workshop in Jerrabomberra, a suburb of Queanbeyan not far from the ACT/New South Wales border.

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Boschert is no stranger to high-performance race cars, or the Mountain itself, having won the Combined Sedans support event at the recent Bathurst 12 Hour, driving his 800 horsepower Corvette Sports Sedan.

He says that competing at Bathurst in a Supercar will fulfil a lifelong dream.

“Dad and I have discussed this for ages, and we figured that buying the car comes down to three points – art, investment and fun,” he said.

“These cars will increase in value, and I know that it’s not an ex-HRT car or a Coke Commodore, but I like the car’s heritage and I’m going there to tick a box. I want to race in a V8 Supercar, in a Supercar event at Bathurst. That was a goal that I thought had passed us.

“And because it’s built later, it has a lot of VT technology. I reckon it’s one of the best VS Commodores of its era.”

While he may be in the oldest car in the field, competing in Super3’s ‘Heritage’ class, Boschert says that he has no intention of running at the back of the pack.

“It’s not a case of going for outright victories, but we are hoping it rains. That will even the pack up a bit” he says.

“We might be in the oldest car, but I don’t plan on being last!”

The full grid for the Super3/V8 Touring Cars, competing alongside the Super2 Series, will be finalised shortly.

With over 20 years in the Australian motorsport industry, Noonan is the head of V8 Sleuth. He’s held a range of roles including working in television with Seven and Ten, print media and public relations. With a specialty in Australian motorsport history, he’s known around racing paddocks as ’the Sleuth’ and started his motorsport media career in 1997.