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Percat launches own racing team

NICK Percat has added team owner to his motorsport resume, launching his own factory karting outfit.

It comes as he heightens his relationship with FA Kart, the brand associated with two-time Formula 1 world champion Fernando Alonso.

Percat’s team is set to begin testing in December before joining the 2024 Australian Karting Championship, fielding as many as 10 drivers across various junior classes as well as some older hands.

He will also take on dealer rights for FA Karts in Victoria, as well as running a spares truck to service FA Karts.

“I’ve always wanted to have a karting team. Since I was 15 years old. That was always the plan for me and my dad if the driving side didn’t work out,” said the four-time Supercars Championship race winner.

“The plan is to run a proper team from next year onwards. I’m in the middle of gearing up now so we can start testing drivers in December ahead of the championship next year.

“I think I can offer a lot of advice to young drivers wanting to become a professional racing car driver.

Nick Percat. Pic: Walkinshaw Andretti United

“I enjoy watching young drivers come through karting and seeing their first day in a Formula Ford. So there are different elements to why I’m doing this.”

There’s potential for that pathway to progress further, with the Percat family owning Formula Ford and Carrera Cup cars.

“The structure I have is that I can run a kart team, but I also own a very good Formula Ford that the right driver could use for their first test before they are passed on to a Formula Ford team like Sonic,” Percat added.

“Dad and I also own a Carrera Cup car which could give a young driver their first taste of a tin top. So there are a few elements to what I’m trying to do.

“It’s not about coming and driving for me, me taking your money, and that’s it.

“It’s about me being able to help develop young drivers through what I know and the people I have around me, like the guys at Walkinshaw Andretti United and the fitness and nutrition work I do with Heath Meldrum.

“The driver who comes to drive for me gets access to all of that as well.

“I want 10 good young drivers that have the dream of trying to get to Supercars or IndyCar or whatever it is. The younger that starts the better, so I want to have a few kids in the cadet classes and then into juniors, as the early teenage years are massively important.

“And I still want to have two or three good senior drivers who can help with the craft of karting, who are on top of their game and capable of winning the national championship. They can then offer support back to the cadets and juniors. That’s the dream and that’s the plan.

“I’m geared up to do local events as well. I’ll be at club days and the Vic country series to support the FA brand.

“I’m kitting up a spare parts van to go to all the events and offer support to anyone running FA karts. So it will be more than just the FA AKC team, there will be the dealership as well. It’s a great brand to be associated with.”

A Bathurst 1000 winner, Percat is currently in his 10th full-time season in the Repco Supercars Championship.

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