South Australian natives Nick Percat and Tim Slade have done the hard yards in Supercars. Now they reunite at Brad Jones Racing (BJR) to take the next step in their careers in one of the most exciting new driver line-ups of 2017, which we profile in issue #97.
Issue #97 is your must-have guide to the new season, including full-field driver profiles, team-by-team changes and event previews. Included with the print edition is a 2017 Freightliner-backed Supercars calendar fridge magnet and V8 champions and Shane van Gisbergen poster.
Issue #97 is on sale now in stores with the digital edition available in the official V8X app (in the App Store and Google Play), online at DigitalEdition.V8XMagazine.com.au and in the Magzter app store.
CLICK HERE for more information on issue #97.
It seemed Slade's career was going to end with the journeyman tag. Then he found his new home and was off to Albury to re-ignite his career after some up-and-down years.
The same fate may have hit his new teammate and fellow South Australian Percat. He may have a Bathurst win to his name but from there the pickings have been slim.
Their stories are remarkably aligned through unsatisfying stints at Walkinshaw Racing that could easily have ended their careers.
In Percat's case, a sacrifice was required with some time at Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport, while Slade simply needed enough patience until the right door opened.
That door led to BJR for 2016. The door for Percat is the same one, just a year later.
Slade won his first Supercars races in 2016 after settling into the team and learning the car and the operating system.
His stuttering start to the season hit fever pitch with a double win at Winton. Then a string of the top-10 finishes to finish eighth in the standings.
For Percat, the journey to BJR has been a little quicker and also with some bigger highlights. As a rookie he won Bathurst with Garth Tander in 2011, but he had to wait for opportunities with the team in the main game.
He had Walkinshaw behind him but that operation was struggling to get it right from one race to the next. Like Slade in his time there, he began to look for a way out and a way forward. When the team shrunk, though, he was out of a drive.
He ended up with the minnows of pitlane, Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport, where he really learnt about racing on a budget. A stunning win in the 2016 Clipsal 500 was a freak result and his management team set about finding the right drive for 2017. It turned out to be replacing Jason Bright at BJR.
CLICK HERE to purchase issue #97 to read the full feature.