Thornburrow keen to improve on promising start to 2023

Garry Rogers Motorsport’s Edan Thornburrow is enjoying life at the front end of the grid after a promising start to the 2023 National Trans Am Series season.

The 19-year-old finds himself just outside the top 10 on the standings after two rounds but has spent a considerable amount of time at the front compared to previous years.

Phillip Island exemplified this after a strong qualifying performance was converted into a fourth-place finish in the opening race.

Thornburrow then crossed the line in second place in the next race but was demoted to 13th after receiving a penalty for contact with his GRM teammate Owen Kelly, before a DNF in the final race rounded out his results.

With a great car underneath and two experienced teammates by his side, Thornburrow knew he was ready to take his game to a new level.

“We showed that the car is there, I know I can do it but it’s just got to be more consistent,” Thornburrow said.

“It’s definitely different up the front, the stakes are a little bit higher and the pressure is on. The team is great with dealing with that pressure and keeping everybody calm.

“You must take it corner by corner, you don’t overthink it because that’s where things start going wrong.

“In the car, it’s just another day and another drive no matter where you are. You must have that same approach to every race.”

As for the incident in the second race of the weekend with his teammate Kelly, Thornburrow was confident the team can move forward and treats every moment alongside the experienced driver as a learning opportunity.

“We have spoken as a team, I don’t want it to linger or hold a grudge as I wasn’t on the receiving end of it but we have dealt with it internally and we can go into Winton with a clear start,” Thornburrow explained.

“Owen has a lot of experience, and so does Marcus but Owen has the experience to mentally contain himself on the track, he is very aggressive and has the ability to put his car exactly where it needs to be.

“You can see the years of experience has come through, from my point of view I only learn from someone like that, it’s way more of a learning experience than anything else.”

A new challenge has reignited the joy of racing for Thornburrow after spending many years down back, complimenting the competitive nature the series has delivered this year.

“It’s a lot more fun up the front, now that I have had a taste of it, I know it’s where I want and need to be every race.

“The whole fun factor has raised now being in a supportive team, up the front against the people we should be racing against.

“You can feel that the whole series is more competitive, you can see it in the times and even the race craft across the grid.

“It’s nothing but a good thing, it feels good running up the front knowing there’s a lot of talent behind you but one small mistake can put you down the order quickly.

“But in terms of that, bring it on.”

The series is one of seven categories in action at the Hi-Tec Oils Race Winton, with Saturday and Sunday’s action to be broadcast via StanSport.

Tickets to the event can be purchased via motorsporttickets.com.au

The National Trans Am Series will take the track at Winton Raceway as part of the Shannons SpeedSeries’ Hi-Tec Oils Race Winton on 9-11 June.