Bruce Jenkins / SUPPLIED
2021 Toyota Racing Series champion Matthew Payne with the Denny Hulme Memorial Trophy.
Auckland teenager Matthew Payne has been announced as Lee Holdsworth’s co-driver for this year’s Bathurst 1000.
Penrite Racing confirmed on Wednesday night that the Super2 young gun will be sharing one of its Ford Mustangs with the veteran Holdsworth, giving the 19-year-old his first taste of what it’s like to drive the latest Supercar around Mt Panorama.
Payne was the winner of last year’s Toyota Racing Series in New Zealand.
It won’t be the first time Payne will have driven the Bathurst circuit, as he took part in races in the Super2 Series and Australian Carrera Cup Championship last year, but competing in the biggest motorsport event in Australasia will be his toughest challenge yet.
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“Racing in the Bathurst 1000 has been a dream of mine since I started racing karts in New Zealand,” Payne said.
“It will be a big weekend doubling up with Super2 as well. I look forward to doing the best I can and working with Lee to do a solid job for Penrite Racing. “
Penrite Racing Team Principal, David Cauchi, said Payne had shown in Super2 that he warrants a drive in the Bathurst 1000.
“Payne has done a great job for us in Super2, proving that he is not only fast but can manage his raw speed over a race distance,” Cauchi said.
“Going to the Mountain for the first time as a main series co-driver is a big undertaking, so pairing him with the man who won the race last year as a co-driver is the perfect match.
“There are a lot of points on offer at Bathurst and it is a long day in the office. It is all about minimizing mistakes from everyone and being on the lead lap for those final stints to the checkered flag. If we can do this, anything is possible from there. “
Penrite Racing has also confirmed that Matt Campbell will be David Reynold’s co-driver at the Great Race.
Payne becomes the seventh Kiwi confirmed for this year’s Bathurst 1000, with the others being Greg Murphy, Richie Stanaway, Shane van Gisbergen, Andre Heimgartner, Chris Pither and Fabian Coulthard.
Bathurst 1000 will take place on October 6-9.