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HomeNewsTickford supremo assesses Randle's rookie year

Tickford supremo assesses Randle’s rookie year

THE 2022 Repco Supercars Championship standings don’t tell the full story when it comes to Thomas Randle, insists Tickford Racing CEO Tim Edwards.

On the surface, Randle sits 23rd of the 24 drivers to have contested every round this season – only ahead of Jack Smith – and has accrued less than 40 percent of the points tally managed by Tickford spearhead Cameron Waters.

None of that bothers Edwards, who has seen positive indicators that their long-time prodigy is on the right track.

Randle has been in the Tickford system since returning to Australia following the 2017 European open-wheel season, his Supercars apprenticeship including two years with its Super2 team and a 2021 wildcard program.

MORE: Waters says step backwards helped Tickford

Aside from one particular standout showing at Albert Park, the Castrol-backed rookie’s first half of the season was plagued by qualifying shortcomings.

That’s largely improved since, with Randle making the Top 10 Shootout on both days at the Gold Coast, twice qualifying inside the 10 at Sandown and putting himself on the front row of the grid at Tailem Bend.

The #55 Castrol Mustang. Pic: Tayler Burke

Edwards put those gains down to off-track efforts (such as Randle’s mid-season visit to UK-based driver coach Rob Wilson), an improved understanding between himself and race engineer Raymond Lau, and growing confidence.

What has held him back, however, are various in-race incidents.

“All the signs are that he’s trending in the right direction,” Edwards told V8 Sleuth.

“The car speed is there, the talent is there.

“Largely his points tally is in parts from earlier in the year him finding his feet, but from our perspective in the latter part of the year, the speed is there, he has just been unfortunate.

“He misses out on the 300-point race at Bathurst through (co-driver Zak Best) just avoiding somebody else’s accident, and he misses out on a 150-point race at the Gold Coast getting involved in somebody else’s accident.

“It’s not a reflection of his speed. The fact is, he was in the Shootout both days at the Gold Coast. They’re far better measures.”

Randle will return for a second season with Tickford in 2023.

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