GEN3 – “START TO FEEL MUCH MORE LIKE A RACING CAR”

By Dan McCarthy with Mick Reynolds

Following their public debut at last year’s Bathurst 1000, the Gen3 Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro complete two days of testing at Queensland Raceway, with drivers reporting to AA that the machines have made a step forward.

Yesterday, Triple Eight Racing drivers Shane van Gisbergen and Broc Feeney jumped behind the wheel of the Camaro, Dick Johnson Racing’s Will Davison took the wheel of the Mustang and former Matt Stone Racing driver Zane Goddard became the first driver to ride both machines. controlled.

Due to some COVID-19 shipping issues late last year, not all Gen3 components were on the machines when they cut their exhibition rounds in Bathurst in December.

This week sees the fully completed cars furiously making their first laps, with Davison and Feeney reporting how different the car feels.

Feeney raced the Camaro at the Queensland racetrack prior to Bathurst last year, essentially doing a shakedown and making sure all the systems were working before the event.

“Two completely different missions I think,” Feeney told AUTO ACTION. “The first time I drove it it allowed me to do laps in Bathurst, now it’s about developing it for 2023.

“So sway bars, suspension, there’s a few little different things that are different, and it’s starting to look a lot more like a race car.”

Davison said it will move from shaking the car to legitimate, high-quality testing by 2022.

“They just had a few key components that weren’t quite ready for the demo laps, including a suspension element, which (here and now) allowed us to really get some mileage on the car,” Davison revealed to AA. “That’s across both cars, a little bit of the final piece of the puzzle.

“They put some significant mileage on some engine elements and base components late last year, now we’re taking that next step to go from basically a shakedown run to trying to get some quality miles on all parts.

“It’s actually my first time today, I did two very slow laps in Bathurst where I actually heard the sound of the engine and that was it, there was no real meaningful mileage.

“Broc (Feeney) Alex (Davison) and Ash Walsh have put in some significant miles here before Christmas but this is the first time I’ve been furious in a row and actually kind of understand where we stand so it’s all part of the process they are going to do throughout the year.”

For all four drivers, it’s all about tracking and testing new components and new setups every time the car hits the track.

“We’re getting a lot of meaningful data, I know it sounds boring, but we’re not here to test performance,” Davison said.

“It’s not a DJR test day, it’s a Supercar day, we’re tracking a lot of things here for the category related to the car, and I’m sure more will change over the course of the year.

“We’re just trying to understand what’s good and what needs refinement.”

Feeney went on to explain that this is just the beginning of what will be a brutal testing program for the Gen3 Supercars.

“We’re just changing things up and seeing what everything does, if it does the same thing it did to the other car with the same changes,” said the 19-year-old.

“There is a lot to do in the next 12 months. The cars will feel completely different again, but we are definitely moving in the right direction.”

For more of the latest Supercars news, read the current issue of Auto Action.

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