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Taupō form lifts DJR spirits

WILL Davison gave Dick Johnson Racing and its fans something to smile about today at Taupō, as the iconic Ford Supercars squad looks to get its 2024 rolling.

DJR is a disappointing 10th in the teams’ championship after two rounds, meaning it only has the Blanchard Racing Team behind it in the live pitlane order.

Davison himself is 10th in the drivers’ standings after digging deep more than once, and the #17 Shell V-Power Racing Mustang was one of the quickest cars during the 90-minute practice session at Taupō.

All told, Davison placed third for the day, just 0.0508s off Chaz Mostert’s benchmark time. Anton De Pasquale wasn’t far behind either, in seventh.

With no further sessions before crunch time arrives in the shape of qualifying tomorrow morning, that form bodes well.

“It’s been our best probably rollout session of the year, which is good,” said Davison.

“We need every little bit of positivity at the moment just to keep the spirits up.

Will Davison aboard the #17 Shell V-Power Mustang. Pic: Tayler Burke

“It has been a tough time for the team but we know what we’re all capable of, so it’s just keeping together, sticking together.

“You get asked the same question every day, it’s like getting kicked when you’re down at a team like ours but that’s normal, so we just keep knuckling down, keep trying to unlock the magic in this car. Whether we have done that today, I don’t know.

“Obviously we’re at a very, very different style of circuit to really anywhere. We had a feeling we’d have a pretty good car on a circuit like this and it seems like we’re okay today.

“I’m not too confident of where we’re at but obviously it has been a good session for both of us and now we have got a heap of stuff to look through because it was a spinout – 90 minutes, you’re just trying to adjust your driving, you’re throwing changes at the car and you’re not really getting a true read because the grip changes so much run to run, so it’s quite confusing.

“But I enjoyed the session, really cool to learn a new circuit and try to get your head around it. I love that challenge.”

The first-ever Supercars qualifying at Taupō Motorsport Park is scheduled to start tomorrow at 8:20am AEST (10:20am local).

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