Home' Supercar Xtra : Feb Mar 2019 Issue 109 Contents SUPERCAR XTRA
One fast youngster who’s been guided by Morris in
recent seasons is Erebus Motorsport rising star Anton de
Pasquale. De Pasquale was able to “come along [to Nor-
well Motorplex] and do things you didn’t think someone
could even do” in a car, according to Morris. The 2013
Australian Formula Ford champion raced for Morris
during his two-year Dunlop Super2 Series campaign in
2016 and 2017, and the pair continue to work together.
“Anton was someone who just got it straight away,”
he says. “And you’d say, ‘Hey, what about this?’ and he’d
go, ‘Yeah that makes sense.’ For him, the program really
evolved. We’d critique all the driver mistakes that were
made at the race meeting. We’d go back to the track
when we had time and go through the little things we
did wrong, polish it up and get everything right. And
that’s what I think accelerated him through the Dunlop
Series so quickly. It is something we still do now with
Mirko [De Rosa], his engineer. He’s a young guy and he
gets it as well.”
Morris goes further, describing de Pasquale as the best
young driver he has seen.
“Definitely Anton,” Morris confirms. “He’s the first
driver that I’ve come across who, when we show him
something, he gets it straight away. He’s at a level that
I’ve just never really seen. He understands what you are
saying and can do it.”
He says part of de Pasquale’s ability to learn quickly is
his rational approach.
“He’s not an emotional guy and everything with him
is logic,” he says. “There is no emotion attached to any-
thing that he does. You can say, ‘You’ve done that badly,’
and he goes, ‘Oh yeah, I have, I need to fix that’.”
But the 2017 Stadium Super Trucks championship
winner admits not all respond to his approach.
“Sure, I’ve had some people come up to me in this
paddock,” says Morris. “You sit with them, you show
them and they look at you like you’re a silly old f@#kwit
and you never see them again. It does happen and not
everyone gets on with everyone. But some guys respond
In addition to de Pasquale, Morris believes there’s
plenty of talent waiting in the wings.
“The top five guys in Super2 are phenomenal,” he says.
“There are 10 guys in Toyota 86. Formula Ford is full of
amazing people, but the sad thing about that is we don’t
see Formula Ford any more and that talent is not on our
stage because of what CAMS [Confederation of Austral-
ian Motor Sport] did. That’s [Formula Ford] been pushed
to the backblocks. Australia is full of great drivers.”
Morris was humble when asked to reflect on the posi-
tive impact he was having on Australian motorsport as
“It’s great, it’s rewarding,” he says. “It still gives you
that feeling you get as a driver that you’re helping some-
one else and I really enjoy it.” But as Morris points out,
“Nothing beats the feeling of being a driver and having
success.” He means his 2014 Bathurst 1000 triumph as
co-driver to Tickford Racing’s Chaz Mostert.
“To still be involved in the sport, it’s just a different
phase of my life,” he says.
“The two things [Bathurst winner and coaching] aren’t
parallel; I don’t think you can compare them. One is this
amazing thing that happened to you and one is some-
thing that you do.
“It’s always good to give back and make the sport
better. I think we do that.”
While the 51-year-old is no longer racing full-time,
he continues to dabble in sportscars, Aussie Racing cars
and speedway in addition to his Stadium Super Trucks
“I’ll race if the car’s not too fast,” he says. “If I get in a
GT car or I get in the Supercar sometimes when we test,
unless you are in those cars all the time, your brain just
can’t compute the speed.
“You’re just getting too old and your reflexes are get-
ting too slow.”
But none of that will stop Morris from passing on eve-
rything he’s learned throughout his career to the next
generation of rising stars, just as Gardner did for him
almost 30 years ago.
ABOVE: Paul Morris
Motorsport grew out of Frank
Gardner’s team and raced in
Supercars up until 2012.
z_SX109 p66-69 Paul Morris.indd 69
30/1/19 2:00 pm
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