BACK-TO-BACK WEEKENDS AT BATHURST FOR REYNOLDS

2024 Bathurst 500, Mount Panorama, Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia. 22 Feb, 2024.

 

David Reynolds is coming off a spectacular weekend at the Repco Bathurst 12-Hour, after competing in the PRO class for the Mercedes AMG factory team, spearheaded by GruppeM Racing.  

 

Reynolds shared the seat with Maro Engel and Felipe Fraga and finished an impressive eighth after multiple Safety Cars as well as penalties on the #130 entry. 

 

“It was such a cool experience,” said Reynolds. 

 

“It was the first time I’ve been a factory AMG Mercedes driver, which is pretty cool and something that I’ll be able to add to my CV. And of course, driving with Maro (Engel) and Felipe (Fraga) was absolutely awesome. They’re both so talented.  

 

“The cars are very cool to drive and quite a bit different. They’re left-hand drive, paddle shift, abs, have traction control and they’ve got 1000kg of downforce at 180km/h, whereas the Supercar has about 200kg of downforce.  

 

“Mentally, it was hard to get my head around it (the car) initially, because you’re braking so much deeper and you’re carrying so much speed; so in my head I kept thinking I was going to have a crash, because if I drove the Gen3 car like that – I definitely would have had a crash. So, it was a bit of a strange feeling.  

 

“I jumped in after the first hour and we were in second, I had Jules (Gounon) behind me, who has won the 12-hour three times, and is probably one of the best GT3 drivers in the world; so that was a little intimidating. However, I managed to do a really good job and saved fuel, whilst matching his lap times – so I was happy with that.  

 

“Unfortunately, we then ran into some trouble and got handed three drive through penalties and the diff also broke half-way through the day, which made it really hard to drive; especially in the wet. They have a normal diff in those cars, so it’s not fully locked like a Supercar, so after it broke, sometimes it would be fully locked, and the car wouldn’t turn at all and then other times it would be fully open, and the car would turn and over steer and it would be shocking to drive. It was really unpredictable.  

 

“In the end, we ended up eighth; which was disappointing considering we were going there to win. But I thoroughly loved the experience and hopefully I can do more throughout the year with them!”  

 

A back-to-back weekend at Bathurst, means a short return back to Melbourne for Reynolds, before taking off again to compete in round 1 of the 2024 Repco Supercars Championship at the Thrifty Bathurst 500.  

 

This weekend will mark Reynolds’ first round driving for a new team, Team 18 owned by Charlie Schwerkolt, but will also see Reynolds reunite with fellow teammate, Mark Winterbottom. The duo last raced together in 2015 and finished first and third in the Championship.  

 

“Obviously this weekend will mark the first race with the new team,” said Reynolds. 

 

“So, a new bunch of people and a new engineer; it’s going to be completely different for me. But, I’m looking forward to working with them all, including my engineer, Richard Holloway. He’s been around for a very long time and also used to engineer Mark Skaife back in the early 2000s, so I can’t wait to get to the track and see what we can do.”  

 

A different format to the usual Bathurst 1000; the Thrifty Bathurst 500 will see two 250km races to make up the 500, as well as a top ten shootout across Saturday and Sunday.  

 

“This weekend will be a bit different to what we usually see at Bathurst,” said Reynolds.  

“It’ll obviously be a single driver event, and we’ll also be running hard tyres. There was only one race last year that we ran the hard tyre, which was at the Grand Prix; and I found the car very hard to drive, so it’ll be interesting this weekend.  

 

“I’m confident that we will have a fast car though and we’ll be looking to push it hard up the front. It’ll be an even playing field for all, so I can’t wait to hit the track and see what we can do!”  

 

Practice 1 kicks off on Friday 23rd February, 12:30pm local time. 

 

All the action from the weekend can be watched on Kayo, Fox Sports, as well as live coverage on Ch7 and 7plus from Saturday.  

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