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WAU locks in endurance pairings

WALKINSHAW Andretti United is again banking on experience for the Repco Supercars Championship’s endurance races.

The Ford team has confirmed the return of co-drivers Lee Holdsworth and Fabian Coulthard, to pair with Chaz Mostert and rookie recruit Ryan Wood respectively.

Mostert and Holdsworth won the 2021 Bathurst 1000 with WAU and were reunited last year following the latter’s unexpected full-time swansong season at Grove Racing.

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Coulthard joined WAU in 2022 after his full-time Supercars career came to a close and, after one campaign with Mostert and one with Nick Percat, now links with countryman Wood.

“We are absolutely rapt to have both Fabian and Lee back on board with the team again in 2024,” said WAU CEO Bruce Stewart.

“There is no doubt the calibre of these drivers puts us in a really strong position alongside Ryan and Chaz come endurance season.

“Both Lee and Fabian recognize the path we are on as a team and want to be a part of that, they fit in to our culture very well, so we are really lucky to have them.”

Lee Holdsworth and Chaz Mostert. Pic: Supplied/Mark Horsburgh

Stewart confirmed that Warren Luff remains on the team’s books as a WAU Foundation Academy Driver Development Advisor and contracted driver.

Luff was last year shuffled out of the main WAU line-up due to Holdsworth’s return and eventually loaned to Team 18 after efforts to field a WAU wildcard fell flat.

“We’re working on what an on-track program for Luffy in 2024 looks like, he’s been instrumental in helping develop our Super2 and Foundation Academy drivers here at WAU and will continue to do so this season,” added Stewart.

“We have a big season ahead of us, but it will be fantastic to have Fabian, Lee and Warren immersed in the team.

“While there’s still a lot to play out before endurance season, we are really excited to see what the year brings.”

Warren Luff at the 2022 Repco Bathurst 1000. Pic: Nathan Wong

Coulthard, who had briefly been touted as a possibility to steer the #2 Mustang full-time in 2024, is now looking forward to teaming with Wood.

“I’m excited to be back for another year with the WAU team and to be driving alongside a fellow Kiwi, Ryan, for his first Bathurst 1000 in the Mobil 1 Truck Assist Racing Mustang is pretty special,” he said.

“I’ll be spending a lot of time with the team and Ryan this year, we have already hit the ground running together, but it will be really important to make sure we gel together as much as possible coming into Sandown and Bathurst.

“The team have done an awesome job getting these cars ready, they look incredible, I’m looking forward to seeing how the cars have evolved over the summer break.”

Added Holdsworth: “It’s great to be back with my partner in crime, Chaz and the WAU family in the Mobil 1 Optus Racing Mustang.

“When you’re teaming up with a mate, it’s enjoyable and it tends to bring out the best in me. Chaz and I have a lot of fun together, but it’s all business once the visor goes down.

“We’re as hungry as ever for the top step after just missing out on the Bathurst podium last year.

“With just two endurance events on the calendar, it’s ultra important you’re comfortable with the car and team, so the continuity helps.

“WAU have been working overtime in the off-season, so I’m looking forward to feeling how the car performs at Winton this week to kick off the year.”

Both co-drivers will be in action during WAU’s pre-season test at Winton on Wednesday.

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