Early Xmas For McLaughlin

Christmas 2009 came a week early for Gold Coast-based, Kiwi-teenager Scott McLaughlin, the karting champion getting to sample a Stone Brothers Racing V8 Supercar at Queensland Raceway. 

Hot on the heels of his final karting event and his second Formula Ford test session at Winton in Victoria the previous week, McLaughlin found himself having to learn an altogether different beast.

scott mclaughline v8 supercar stones brothers

The V8 Supercar he tested was the ex-James Courtney/ Jason Bright BF Falcon and McLaughlin acclimatised himself to the 650-horsepower beast by joining regular drivers Alex Davison (IRWIN Racing) and Shane van Gisbergen (SP Tools Racing) for some passenger laps in order to learn to circuit during the day prior to the test, which was conducted last Thursday, December 17.

McLaughlin had previously driven at the circuit having completed laps in a both an Australian Championship Mini machine and also contested an endurance race in a Holden Gemini, while endless hours on a simulator also ensured he knew which way the six turn Queensland Raceway went.

McLaughlin acquitted himself extremely well during the hot and blustery day, which saw air temperatures in the 34-degree range and track temperatures as high as 55-degrees!

At day’s end he had completed over seventy laps of the circuit, split into sessions of five to six lap stints and other than one grassy moment didn’t put a foot wrong.  His lap times came down with every outing and during his last session Scott recorded times just over one second slower than regular drivers; Davison and van Gisbergen, impressing team boss, Ross Stone.

“Scott did a great job and drove sensibly and maturely despite being just sixteen.  He still has a lot to learn about these cars because they are a difficult beast to master but his results after one day were very impressive indeed.  He starts work with us full time in January and his first job will be far less exciting!

McLaughlin was equally as happy and beamed at day’s end.

“Unreal, just unreal.  These cars are big and fast and they require respect but I felt really comfortable as the day progressed and the SBR cars are just so good to drive.  I have to thank Ross, Jimmy and the entire team for the opportunity and can’t wait to do some more laps at some point in the future.  I was grinning my whole way around the first lap and went to sleep that night with the biggest smile on my face - give me more.”

An announcement on Scott’s 2010 racing plans will be made during late January.


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