While an expert of the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit on two wheels, Troy Bayliss will become a rookie all over again this weekend when the multiple World Superbike Champion gets behind the wheel of a race car.
He will race a Paul Morris Motorsports prepared Commodore with Dean Fiore at the first endurance race of the 2009 V8 Supercar Series, the L&H 500.
Since claiming his third World Superbike Championship less than a year ago, Bayliss has made the successful transition from two to four wheels with test days completed with TeamVodafone, Jack Daniels Racing and Paul Morris Motorsports.
Bayliss then accepted an invitation to join Fiore for the L&H 500 at Phillip Island and the SuperCheap Auto 1000 at Bathurst’s iconic, Mount Panorama.
After spending time with the Triple F Racing team and working on his fitness for the event, Bayliss said he is feeling prepared for L&H 500 and can’t wait to get behind the wheel of the #12 Commodore which will carry a striking blue and white, Kitten Car Care Products livery for the Phillip Island and Mount Panorama events.
“I’ve been training a lot to prepare my body for the race and overall I am feeling ready and really looking forward to the weekend,” Bayliss said.
“While we haven’t had any testing since last month, I have been using other methods to prepare for the event. The guys have sent me DVDs from last year’s race and I’ve also spent some time with the team practicing our driver changes so overall I am feeling ready.”
Bayliss said that while he will be a V8 Supercar rookie this weekend, he has a lot of experience at the Phillip Island circuit which has delivered him much success during his illustrious motorcycle career.
“I’ve raced at Phillip Island a lot on a bike and overall I definitely think my knowledge of the track will come in handy this weekend as I have a lot to learn throughout the course of the event,” Bayliss concluded.
Fiore, who will also be making his endurance race debut at Phillip Island said he is looking forward to racing alongside Bayliss who he considered a be a true professional.
“Given that Troy [Bayliss] is a three time World Superbike Champion there is a lot I can learn from him,” his co-driver Fiore said.
“I’m looking forward to working alongside him and seeing how he approaches each race.”
Practice for the L&H 500 at Phillip Island starts today. Bayliss will compete in either Sprint Race A or B the following day before sharing driving duties with Fiore in the 500 kilometre race on Sunday.