Home' Supercar Xtra : Dec 2018 Jan 2019 Issue 108 Contents SUPERCAR XTRA
And these guys show no interest in giving the Camaro
For a start, they’ve all had to shape and mould the
cars they race onto the standard chassis without a con-
cession, including the Mustang that comes next year.
“When we started work on the Mustang we also
wanted the roll hoop lowered and when that was rejected
we just worked our arse off and figured out how to work
around it,” Edwards says.
A fundamental concern for teams running rival cars is
that lowering the height of the Camaro’s roll cage would
deliver it a centre of gravity advantage.
“Whether it’s a perceived or real advantage everyone
will then be forced to build new cars to lower the cage
to lower the centre-of-gravity,” says Edwards, speaking
in his Tickford rather than commission role.
“We shouldn’t be forcing 26 cars to reshell to run lower
Edwards’ point alludes to a concern that some teams
have; that HSV and WAU have yet to truly apply engi-
neering rigour to the challenge of making the Camaro fit.
“There’s no doubt in my mind we could see a Camaro
racing as well [without a rule change],” declares Story. In
fact, it’s understood DJRTP has even offered HSV data
from the Mustang project to help that process.
Clearly, there is a fear that more model-specific modi-
fications simply lead further down the rabbit hole. Those
around in the days of Group C will remember the mess
constant rule evolutions got the category into.
There is a current precedent here of course: the
concession handed to the ZB Commodore to run more
carbon-fibre panels than its predecessor was allowed.
That forced Ford teams and Kelly Racing into a rushed
and expensive retro-fit.
Supercars boss Sean Seamer certainly seems downbeat
about the Camaro’s prospects.
“No, there’s not going to be any concessions made,” he
said when quizzed about the Camaro’s technical issue.
“We have the Mustang and we’ve worked through that
with Ford. We will continue to look at ways to support
Walkinshaw bringing the Camaro in should they wish
to, but those conversations haven’t happened at Com-
mission level yet.”
And what happens if the Supercars Commission does
have that conversation?
“I think it’s very unlikely that the commission would
agree to make a concession for one vehicle when the
concession hasn’t been made for the one that’s entering
[Mustang],” said Seamer.
Jackson clearly isn’t convinced that obstacle is insur-
mountable. While there have already been informal dis-
cussions with Supercars, the suggestion is more pressure
can be applied. After all, the championship will be just
Commodore versus Mustang from 2020 because the
Nissan Altima drops out at the end of 2019.
“At some point we will probably ask the question of
Supercars how interested they are in having a Camaro
in the Supercar field,” says Jackson.
You think all that’s complicated? Now consider Holden’s
stance and HSV’s relationship with it.
Sure, Holden isn’t the big-bucks investor in Supercars
it once was, but it’s still in there spending and there are
signs under the new regime of former Toyota Australia
boss Dave Buttner and his marketing chief Kristian Aqui-
lina that its sometimes-shaky commitment is firming.
Having two GM products on the Supercars grid racing
each other isn’t necessarily something Holden and its
US parent would endorse. In his most recent comments
Aquilina did seem to be leaning away from Camaro.
“I don’t mean to be a killjoy but it (Camaro) is a little
bit of a distraction from what we are here and in the
market to do,” he said.
“Fact of the matter is, resources aren’t aplenty like
they used to be. We have to narrow our focus on what
we concentrate on and we’ve decided what we’re con-
centrating on... is Commodore, making ZB an absolute
“I can understand why fans are excited (about the
Camaro), but it’s our job to get as many people as pos-
sible excited about the Holdens that we’re selling rather
If that attitude solidifies into policy then there’s no
doubt the Camaro Supercars plan would be dropped like
a hot rock. That’s because HSV’s commercial deal with
GM and Holden is far more important to it than a race
program it now co-owns.
The supply of Silverado, Colorado and Camaro (and
other models in the future) must be guaranteed above
ABOVE: Previous Camaro
racers, the Bob Jane
Chevrolet Camaro ZL-1 (top)
and Kevin Bartlett’s Camaro
z_SX108 p54-58 Camaro.indd 57
13/11/18 2:08 am
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