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WAU hotshot returning to scene of career ‘turning point’

WALKINSHAW Andretti United rookie Ryan Wood will arrive in Perth looking to ruffle some more feathers by putting his #2 Mustang up the pointy end.

The 20-year-old last month enjoyed a breakout event on home turf, making a pair of Top 10 Shootouts at Taupō and placing fourth in a wet Saturday race where a podium had even been on the cards.

Not only was that Wood’s first wet race in Supercars, it was effectively his first non-sprint race, given he’d been wiped out at the start of both encounters at the Bathurst 500.

Now the plucky Kiwi returns to the scene of the Super2 cleansweep that put him on the fast-track to Supercars.

Wood dazzled in what was just his second Super2 round en route to a pair of victories, after which a swift graduation to the main game seemed inevitable.

Ryan Wood (middle) after sweeping the Perth Super2 round. Pic: Ross Gibb

“Perth was probably the turning point of my career,” he told V8 Sleuth.

“Like it really just kind of set up what unfolded and put a bit of hype around me.

“I think the double race win really helped and I think some of the moves and that sort of stuff really helped as well.

“I’m excited to get back there. Obviously it’s going to be a bit different in Gen3, the races are a bit longer as well.

“I think the knockout quali is going to be interesting; hopefully we can make the right choices and then end up in the last segment of quali in each of the days.

“It should be a good weekend. We have got a lot of practice time so by Sunday I think we should be on it.”

Ryan Wood aboard the #2 Mobil 1 Truck Assist Mustang. Pic: Tayler Burke

Still winless as a Ford Supercars team, WAU has long sought a genuine two-pronged attack and Wood looks to be capable of doing his bit alongside established superstar Chaz Mostert.

The next test of that, naturally, will be Wanneroo Raceway this weekend.

“Obviously I know the track so I think that helps, and I have got good confidence after New Zealand and with what happened at Perth last year,” Wood reiterated.

“So I’m just looking forward to getting there and seeing where I stack up and fingers crossed I can be right with Chaz, if not in front.”

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