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Tuesday, May 28, 2024


TRANS Am ace Nathan Herne has reacquainted himself with Supercars machinery courtesy of a last-minute opportunity with PremiAir Racing today.

Less than 48 hours after completing a weekend cleansweep of the three Turtle Wax Trans Am Series races at Queensland Raceway, Herne stepped into the #22 Coca-Cola ZB Commodore as part of PremiAir’s test at the same location.

Herne infamously was denied a Repco Supercars Championship debut at the 2020 Bathurst 1000 when his application for a Superlicence dispensation was rejected.

Opportunities to drive a Supercar have been sparse since, despite his impressive form in other categories, but the 19-year-old has not given up on his main game dream.

“Nathan contacted me and asked if there was any chance of doing some testing with us or an evaluation,” PremiAir Racing owner Peter Xiberras told V8 Sleuth.

“I said to him, ‘look, today is really a test day but I would see what I could do for him’. We got permission to put him in the car and give him some laps.

“Obviously he has done quite well with what he does in S5000 and Trans Am.

Nathan Herne was three-from-three in the Trans Am weekend at Queensland Raceway. Pic: Australian Racing Group

“It’s just good to give back and try to look after the young fellas of our game.

“If we don’t put some effort into the up-and-comers, you just don’t know where this could lead.”

READ MORE: The 2022 Repco Bathurst 1000 entry list as it stands

Xiberras has ambitions of one day adding a Super2 Series program to his top-flight squad, and is already reaping the rewards of empowering young talent in the form of James Golding.

The mid-season recruit had been out of full-time action for two-and-a-half years before being called on to replace Garry Jacobson in the Subway Holden for the final seven rounds of 2022.

“Not only is he doing a good job in the car, he is a champion of a person,” Xiberras said of Golding.

Peter Xiberras (right) talks with PremiAir Racing team principal Matt Cook. Pic: Rhys Vandersyde/InSyde Media

“He fits in with the team, it’s just a nice feel. He is meeting and probably exceeding expectations, so very happy with him.”

Xiberras noted that Golding’s appointment had been a key factor in the decision to award the #31 Bathurst co-drive to Dylan O’Keeffe, who like Herne and Golding has spent years in the Garry Rogers Motorsport pipeline.

“We probably had 10 people on the list of co-drivers,” he said.

“I try to involve the drivers on who they would like as their co-driver. It doesn’t always mean they’ll get who they want, but once James came along, Dylan was elevated and eventually got the green light.”

Golding, O’Keeffe, Chris Pither and Cameron Hill are all testing with PremiAir today.

Among other cars in action at QR are the Truck Assist-backed Matt Stone Racing Commodores of Jack Le Brocq and Todd Hazelwood and their respective co-drivers Aaron Seton and Jayden Ojeda.

LISTEN: F1 and Supercars silly season latest on the Castrol Motorsport News Podcast

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