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HomeNewsOPINION: Why DJR's Noble appointment is a winner

OPINION: Why DJR’s Noble appointment is a winner

THE Supercars paddock is a funny place.

It’s filled with passion and experience, many having forged a lifelong career in the industry. And when people do move on, it’s often to another employer within.

Likewise, when a vacancy presents itself somewhere, candidates are usually plucked from the relative comfort of the pitlane.

It is this process which leads to a ‘bubble’ – and arguably a degree of closed-mindedness as to how things should be done.

What’s my point? I love that Dick Johnson Racing has blown the game wide open with its choice of CEO.

When AFL stalwart David Noble was announced as the new head honcho of Supercars’ most historic team, the news was met with some strange looks. Almost as if, “he’s not one of us.”

Noble most recently had been head coach of the struggling North Melbourne Kangaroos.

Before that, he’d tasted success in sports administration roles at the Adelaide Crows and Brisbane Lions.

But how can someone without motorsport expertise appropriately guide a powerhouse like DJR?

David Noble with Dick Johnson. Pic: Supplied

Well, like Noble has indicated, the principles of sports administration are much the same whether it is AFL or Supercars.

What’s better is that, if we’re being honest with ourselves, the AFL is a far bigger business than Supercars and undoubtedly an arena where lessons can be drawn from.

But that can only happen if you’re prepared to delve outside the bubble.

Having Noble at the top is a risk of sorts, but one which could awaken the beast at DJR – on and off the track – after a couple of years of playing second fiddle to archrivals Triple Eight.

While their drivers (and presumably livery) are unchanged, it really is a new-look DJR led by the business prowess of Brett Ralph (whose majority ownership only took actual effect four days ago) and the new ideas of Noble.

Combined with co-owners Dick Johnson and Ryan Story, plus technical gurus such as Perry Kapper and Ludo Lacroix, it will be fascinating to see how DJR evolves over the course of 2023.

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