Tasman Motorsports Group (TMG) has been forced to switch between its two drivers, Andrew Waite and Daniel Gaunt, after Waite suffered a broken wrist over the weekend
It was just a week ago when team principal Steve Horne announced that Waite would make his V8 SuperTourer sprint series debut at the BNT V8 SuperTourer event at Pukekohe in May, taking the helm of the Valvoline Ford and following on from some impressive results from Gaunt.
Waite was competing in the Honda Cup enduro at Pukekohe this past weekend with regular Honda driver Warren Tunley, when torrential rain suddenly hit the circuit causing Waite and several other drivers to aquaplane off the circuit.
Waite made minor contact into another competitor while trying to take avoiding action, the force of the impact enough to wrench the steering wheel out of his hand and breaking the scaphoid bone in his left wrist.
The injury has ruled Waite out of race driving for 8-10 weeks and the Pukekohe event. With that, Daniel Gaunt has been recalled and will continue to pilot the Valvoline Ford with Waite to return to the drivers seat at Taupo in September.
Horne says that himself and the whole TMG team are disappointed for Waite.
"We all feel terribly disappointed for Andrew. He had been training very hard and had made the effort to gain plenty of race miles in preparation for the Pukekohe V8 SuperTourer round. He did very well at the ITM 400 in a Porsche 997 where he finished 3rd in one of the races," says Horne.
"He was doing well in the Honda at the weekend before the accident and was on track to be fully prepared for his sprint series debut."
"This injury won’t affect his place here at TMG, he is still a invaluable part of the team and his solo debut has just been delayed until September at Round 4. We still believe, he and Daniel will be a very strong combination at the enduro’s later in the year, as they together demonstrated in 2012."
Waite says he is hugely disappointed with not being able to drive in the next event.
"I really can’t describe how gutted I am right now. But it’s just one of those things, that could have been a lot worse. It’s just my luck however that the bone I broke in my wrist is the one that takes the longest to heal."
"I almost avoided the crash itself, I could see it coming and really wanted to avoid damaging Warren’s car, as we were on for a good result. However, it looks like in trying to save the car, I sacrificed my wrist instead."
"I’ve now got a long four month wait before Taupo. I’ll continue to maintain my fitness levels, and gain all the strength back in my wrist. These V8 SuperTourers are incredibly physical to drive, so I’ll need to be 100%."
The Tasman Motorsports Group Valvoline Ford is supported by IVECO Trucks, Autotrader.co.nz and Midas.
Round 3 of the 2013 BNT V8 SuperTourers Championship will be held at Pukekohe, May 25/26.