Australian TE50 AU1 Member
Join Date: Jun 2001
My Drive in a V8 Supercar
On Friday afternoon at 3.45 I was privileged to have seat next to John Bowe in his V8 Supercar. What can I say, I am still up on a cloud with a number nine on it. The whole experience was brilliant, from the time I put on my Ozemail suit to the time I took it off again, it was very surreal, very dream like. The pit manager, Dale, was great, a very friendly guy, I felt like I was a real celebrity. John Bowe was also very friendly, very cool and relaxed, and his wife was even friendlier. I completed three laps of the Canberra circuit, two were very fast, obviously not flat out, but the way we were just missing walls and making the rear end slide, we were probably not far off. I didn’t find the experience scary at all, I just tried to absorb every sensation. I kept thinking, I am in a V8 supercar, John Bowe is next to me, it was very unreal, I still can’t believe it. Several things really struck me, first the braking power, JB would hammer it until he reached the appropriate mark, then he would literally slam on the brakes, sending my head forward very rapidly. The gear changing was awesome to watch, the circuit is so tight gears were being changed constantly. The steering response through the chicane was incredible, amazingly quick. I would have loved to have had more laps, but I think three was my limit, another couple and I would need the brown paper bag.
Overall, it has made me realise how good these blokes are, the concentration needed to drive around one lap is high enough, I can’t imagine what it must be like having dozens of other cars around, just missing you. How they coped with the heat in Darwin I don’t know, I was sweating after three laps in the relative cold of Canberra.
I feel very fortunate to have experienced such an awesome drive, it will be something I will never forget.