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Hobson hoping to seal last minute SMP enduro deal

Hobson Motorsport is hoping to secure a last minute deal for next weekend’s SMP501

Hobson Motorsport is hoping a last minute deal will secure its place on next weekend’s Australian Endurance Championship grid at Sydney Motorsport Park.

The team has been out of action since a disastrous Bathurst 12 Hour campaign left the squad with two damaged Nissan GT-Rs, curtailing its 2017 plans.

However team boss Brett Hobson is working feverishly to stitch together a deal to lineup for the Sydney Motorsport Park 501, though concedes the odds are lengthening each day.

“We were trying to run at the Sydney Motorsport Park endurance event, but it’s just been pretty hard to find someone to partner with me,” Hobson told Speedcafe.com.

“Obviously I want to go racing too, so I’ve got to foot my bill and I don’t really fancy footing anybody else’s.

“We’re still trying everything, ringing everybody; I’ve rung everybody that I can find!”

The damage at the start of the year saw one of the team’s two Nissans scrapped, and the second in need of extensive repairs.

That ruled the team out of the opening Australian Endurance Championship event at Phillip Island, leaving it an uphill battle to secure a second driver for the remainder of the campaign.

“We wanted to do the endurances, that was always our main key,” Hobson said.

“After Bathurst, with the damage on both cars, there’s no way we were getting to the first round.

“Being mid-year, people already knew what they were doing at the start of the year. That’s probably where we’re finding that hard.”

Should it not find a way onto the grid next weekend, Hobson revealed he could make a cameo at Sandown for the final round of the Australian GT Championship, entering the car with Hobson driving solo for the weekend.

The focus though is on a return to Mount Panorama, where the team plans to tackle Challenge Bathurst in November as it begins preparations for next year’s Bathurst 12 Hour.

There’s also interest in the Asia Pacific 36, which starts next November at Hampton Downs before heading to Sepang and then Bathurst at the start of 2019 for a trio of 12-hour races.

“That would be a great thing for getting a good group of guys together,” Hobson claimed.

“I’d love to do it. Sepang is a hop, skip and a jump and so is Hampton – we’d be 100 percent keen on doing that.”

There are also plans for Hobson to drive with Andres Latorre for 2018, who has previously driven a Ferrari F430 at track days but has thus far no racing experience.

Latorre has however taken the wheel of the GT-R in testing in a bid to bring him up to speed ahead of next season.

“Andres is planning to drive with me next year so we’re just working on that,” Hobson admitted.

“We’ve just got to focus on him now, get him up to speed, give him everything he needs to try and get comfortable in the car.

“He’s jumped out of a Ferrari, a rear-engined naturally aspirated car into a turbo-charged front-engined, Kardashian-booty Nissan GT-R.

“It’s just getting his head around that; once he does that I think he’ll be fine.”

In the interim the team has already returned to track, testing at both Phillip Island and Sydney Motorsport Park, and has engaged Garth Walden Racing as part of a reshuffle within the team.


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