Courtney aims for Bathurst form reversal
Thu, 04 Oct 2012 7:28a.m.
By Ed Jackson
In under two years V8 Supercars star James Courtney's dream move to the Holden Racing Team has turned into the stuff of nightmares.
Courtney arrived at HRT before the 2011 season as the newly-crowned V8s champion and promptly won one of his first races for the factory-backed team in Abu Dhabi.
That remains his sole victory as a HRT driver and he goes into Sunday's Bathurst 1000 sitting a lowly 11th on the championship standings.
Courtney knows he needs a win to revive his career and there would be no better stage for a turnaround success than Mount Panorama.
"It'd definitely ease a little bit of the pain that the last 18 months have been, that's for sure," Courtney says.
"I've been here six times and been on the podium three. I have a good record here. I love coming up here, it's great.
"The track's good, but for me ... it's the atmosphere that makes this place.
"This year is going to be out of control with the 50th year celebrations.
"Definitely a win would ease some of the pain I've got."
Courtney says he doesn't have to look far for inspiration that he can buck this year's trends and clamber onto the top step at Bathurst.
Last year's win by teammate Garth Tander and his co-driver Nick Percat came against the odds as well as the West Australian held off a fast-finishing Craig Lowndes to claim HRT's seventh Bathurst crown.
"Bathurst isn't all about car speed," Courtney said.
"It's about strategy, who deals with different scenarios throughout the day the best and is able to overcome that in the end.
"Last year the fastest car didn't win the race, that's for sure.
"It's an amazing event and I definitely think we're in with a shot of a great result."
The Bathurst 1000 begins later on Thursday with three practice runs..
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