Monday, Feb 11 08:25pm
AUTHOR: Simon Chapman

Richie Stanaway happy he left Tickford for GRM

Richie Stanaway has spoken out for the first time since joining Garry Rogers Motorsport about his woes at Tickford Racing.


In an interview with Fox Sports, the 27-year-old revealed the ‘finger pointing’ attitude the team took during his one-year stint.


Both he and former teammate Mark Winterbottom left the team. Winterbottom ended a 13-year long relationship with the Ford squad to join Holden outfit Team 18.


Stanaway began the season buoyed by the prospect of joining a championship-winning team, but he soon found himself in a world of pain.


“I was pretty excited to join Tickford last year but it didn’t turn out as I hoped,” Stanaway said. “They didn’t want to support me.


“It’s easy for them to point the fingers at their drivers rather than fix the issues they have. Two of us have found better environments to work in, Mark and myself. I think we’re both a lot happier being elsewhere.”


While there was a time when Stanaway looked unlikely to find a seat in the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, the Kiwi was confident he’d be back.


That came by virtue of sponsors Boost Mobile and the axing of Garth Tander from Garry Rogers Motorsport.


“There was never really a point that I felt that I wouldn’t be back,” he said of his prospects.


“It’s still fortunate that it all came together because it’s never easy to put all the pieces together but thankfully Boost wanted to support me and found a place for me.


“I’m happy to be back and would have been pretty disappointed if I only got one season so it’s good to be back with another shot.


“Racing is expensive and teams need sponsors and not having a sponsor in the fourth car at Tickford shows with the amount of commitment everyone is prepared to put in for you.


“If you’ve got a proper sponsor on board then it paves the road for what you need to do. It’s a much different feeling to have a good sponsor on board and having just the two cars on a team is the best formula for sure.


“Even the best two teams in Penske and Triple Eight aren’t comfortable expanding to more cars so if they can’t do it I don’t think anyone else can.”


Stanaway has his focus set on winning races. Garry Rogers Motorsport haven’t won a race since 2016 with Scott McLaughlin and the highly popular Volvo S60 platform.


This year will mark the second full season for Stanaway. His co-driver for the PIRTEK Enduro Cup hasn’t been confirmed yet nor has a livery been revealed for the Boost Mobile-backed Holden Commodore ZB race cars.