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The catalyst for Fraser’s big pre-season decision

IT was at a pre-season training camp at Noosa that Declan Fraser realised what he had to do.

The 2022 Super2 champion impressed Triple Eight last year with his unwavering dedication, travelling around the country to become part of the furniture at the all-conquering team.

When Fraser was unveiled as Jake Kostecki’s replacement at Tickford Racing in January, the Castlemaine-born, Mackay-raised driver had every intention to remain living on the Gold Coast.

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“Originally the plan was to stay on the Gold Coast because I have such a really good base there,” Fraser told V8 Sleuth.

“And obviously Norwell Motorplex is based on the Gold Coast so I like to spend as much time as I can there – they were the people who sort of built me into the driver I am today from when I first joined cars.”

But stuck in the back of his mind was the tight-knit relationship he had built with Triple Eight and how a similar approach might just be the best way to connect with his new team and maximise his rookie season.

Various Tickford co-drivers shared the #56 Tradie Mustang at the Sydney Motorsport Park test. Pic: Nathan Wong

And so, Fraser packed up and moved back to Castlemaine, northwest of Melbourne where Tickford’s Campbellfield headquarters are located.

“It was a pretty quick decision for myself,” Fraser explained.

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“I was on a training camp with the guys and while I was there I was like, ‘you know what, I’m going to move’ and four days later I was packing my stuff and in a trailer and off we went.”

Fraser continued his ways by heading along to Winton as a spectator for Tickford’s first Gen3 shakedown of Cam Waters’ #6 Mustang on February 8.

From there, his journey has been a little more tricky due to a battle with both glandular fever and tonsillitis.

His condition forced him out of the Sydney Motorsport Park all-in, but he tallied bulk mileage in Winton outings either side of that absence.

Engineered by Chris Stuckey, Fraser will make his maiden main game solo start next weekend at the Thrifty Newcastle 500.

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