• Andre Heimgartner

Heimgartner set to take on Hidden Valley for second year in the Mustang

The Repco Supercars Championship will head to Hidden Valley this weekend for the Merlin Darwin Triple Crown event, June 18-20.

After a calendar shake up due to the pandemic again wreaking havoc for Victorian teams, the originally scheduled Winton event was put on-hold and Melbourne-based teams made a dash for the border, comparable to last year.

Andre Heimgartner was among many of the Victorian drivers that was forced on the road before borders were closed to ensure that the Darwin event could still go ahead.

This will be the second year in a row that the 26-year-old will take on the Hidden Valley circuit in the #7 Ned Racing Mustang. Last year saw the Supercars Championship visit the Darwin circuit for back-to-back events, where Heimgartner finished inside the top ten at the first event and a best placed finish of eighth at the second Darwin event.

“It’s been a pretty weird four weeks really, having to cross the border again,” Heimgartner said.

“While it’s been a good four weeks of sight-seeing, I’ve also been keeping up with my fitness and enjoying the sunshine!

“Last year was our first year at Hidden Valley in the Mustang so it was a bit of a learning curve, trying new set ups. We’ll obviously have some data to use from last year heading into this weekend, so that should help and hopefully give us some confidence.

“I haven’t done terribly at this track in the past and I generally like the style of circuit, so I’m keen to get back behind the wheel.”

The Hidden Valley circuit is well known for its fast layout, with an average speed of 149km/h and a top speed of 271km/h along the main straight, whilst tyre degradation plays a significant part in strategy across the weekend due to the hotter humidity.

“I do love this event and enjoy getting up here and out of the cold Melbourne weather and into the sunshine,” admits Heimgartner.

“I enjoy the style of this track, it kind of has everything with plenty of corners but is also fast so you have to be on it all the time.

“Fingers crossed we can come away with some decent results this weekend and keep chipping away at our Championship points.”

This weekend will see the Supercars hit the track for the first practice session on Friday 18 June, 11:25am ACST and will feature three sprint races, one on Saturday and two on Sunday.

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