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HomeNewsOPINION: Fraser's real win in Adelaide

OPINION: Fraser’s real win in Adelaide

SEALING the Dunlop Super2 Series title was not Declan Fraser’s most important achievement from this month’s Adelaide 500.

Sure, Fraser now is part of a select group of Super2 champions, joining the likes of Scott McLaughlin, Mark Winterbottom and Cam Waters.

With that comes a mantle that can never be taken anyway from the Mackay product, and a status as leading the next wave of emerging Supercars talent.

But as he has discovered, a Super2 title doesn’t automatically translate to a professional career, Fraser forced to bide his time in waiting for a main game berth with the 2023 grid full.

There was something else from Adelaide that could be far more pivotal for his future, though.

In a truly wild Super2 season, Fraser had earnt a reputation for his racecraft and ability to calmly navigate chaos, accumulating big points more consistently than any of his rivals.

But a question mark had loomed about his raw pace and whether he had what it takes to qualify strongly enough to make a dent one day in the ultra-competitive top tier.

After all, he had been outqualified by rookie teammate Cameron Hill more often than not and also (at that point) had less front-row starts than Tyler Everingham, Matt Payne and Zak Best.

Fraser answered any potential critics in style, blazing to both Adelaide pole positions (and subsequent race wins) at a pressure-filled time when he could have been forgiven for playing it safe.

A jubilant Declan Fraser after winning the Saturday Super2 race in Adelaide. Pic: Triple Eight Race Engineering

In one Friday featuring two qualifying sessions, the 22-year-old showed another side which makes him all the more attractive as a proposition – especially when that speed is combined with racecraft.

“I had a completely different mindset coming into (Adelaide) than I’ve had in the whole season and I think it showed throughout qualifying,” he admitted post-round.

MORE: How Triple Eight overcame poaching raid to win title

The long-held assumption is that Fraser and Triple Eight will agree to a wildcard campaign next year involving both sprint and endurance Repco Supercars Championship events. That would likely see him combine with Craig Lowndes again at Bathurst.

But V8 Sleuth understands other options are hovering, perhaps more geared towards full-time opportunities in 2024.

When asked about what the future holds, Fraser told media: “My family and I are going over to Bali (in late December) to enjoy a nice little cocktail on the beach and we’ll chill out and have a think about it for next year.”

Fraser’s title did secure a slice of history for Triple Eight, the Brisbane outfit becoming the first to win the Supercars drivers’ and teams’ championships, Bathurst 1000 and Super2 crown all in the same year.

“It’s a pretty special feeling to be involved in history like that,” he said.

“I’m so grateful to the whole Triple Eight family and Supercheap Auto and MoneyMe for being there and supporting me the whole way through the year and to come away with that statistic and finish off the year like this is pretty mega.”

Triple Eight is currently in the market for a co-driver for one of its Red Bull Ampol Camaros following Garth Tander’s defection to Grove Racing.

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