Kiwi Supercars ace André Heimgartner is hoping to recapture old form when he and the rest of the Supercars paddock arrive at the category’s next stop; Tailem Bend.
The Kelly Racing driver is coming off two of his toughest rounds, both he and teammate Rick Kelly struggling with both mechanical issues and set-up issues at Townsville’s dual SuperSprint events.
“We were struggling a fair bit. It was very testing towards the end,” Heimgartner told Supercars.com. “We had two weekends [in Townsville] and we just didn’t manage to find a set-up. And believe me, we tried everything we possibly could.
“It puts a toll on everyone but it’s a real credit to all of the guys, everyone has kept going, kept pushing and if there’s one thing this weekend, I think we have sorted out our pit stops a little bit. I’m looking forward to reviewing everything and having some time to relax and then hopefully having a better run at it at Tailem Bend.”
Up until Townsville, the 25-year-old had enjoyed a relatively positive season. Despite the challenge of building a new car powered by heavily reworked engines, Heimgartner was strong at most rounds.
He finished inside or on the cusp of the top 10 for the first seven races of the season, before scoring a second-place finish at Sydney Motorsport Park — the same race where he started from pole position.
The BNT V8 champ’s best finish over Townsville’s six races, meanwhile, was 14th. He also faltered to his first finish outside the top 20 and his first retirement. Heimgartner hopes that the return to Tailem Bend — a track where he was second quickest in pre-season testing — will see an upswing in form.
“We had good pace there during the test day earlier in the year and even last year so hopefully we can put everything together and have a good weekend,” he said.
The first of the South Australian Bend events, the Repco SuperSprint, takes place next weekend on September 19–20. The series then races at the venue for a second weekend in a row a week later.