23 August 2021 | General

Set-up direction key to rapid Trans Am progression

The rapid progression from within the National Trans Am ranks during the opening four rounds has been credited to a range of slight set-up changes.

According to long-time competitor and team owner Ian McAlister the shift in pace this season has been considerable compared to previous campaigns.

“The whole field has lifted and we’re four seconds faster than when we first started at the same tracks,” said McAlister.

McAlister explained the influence of Marcos Ambrose has spread throughout the field in terms of set-up guidance resulting in increased pace.

“There are some finer bits, which we’ve learnt off Marcos with set-up from NASCAR,” said McAlister.

“We’ve taken it onboard, we had him for a couple of days where the things he suggested made sense.

“I was always saying get them lower, get them lower, but what was happening they were dragging across the kerb all the time and scraping all the bottom of the car.

“He said the way you set these up you don’t do that, they’re low but not scraping, it’s all in the rebound, in the shock settings, so we’ve learnt a lot off him and the cars are two seconds a lap faster.”

McAlister’s team also consisting of Kubota Racing pair Matt Mackelden and son Hugh, as well as former Pulsar racer Mark Crutcher is currently the biggest on the National Trans Am Series grid. However, a close-knit team of eight spearheaded by four mechanics run the squad’s operation over the course of a race weekend.

One of the first to buy a Trans Am-spec car in Australia, McAlister has witnessed the growth first hand and believes the new young guns continue to set a new standard.

“It’s grown incredibly with all these young blokes coming in like Aaron Seton, Nash Morris and Nathan Herne, they’ve set another bar,” he stated.

Although the mid-season break has been longer then intended, it has enabled the Young-based team to regroup and prepare for a strong end to the season.

“It’s given us time to get settled and to be really, really organised to come out punching really hard we hope,” said McAlister.

“We think we’ve got everything in place to be right up there.

“I’m looking forward to the next round where we can let the thing loose.”

The next round of the National Trans Am Series will be held at The Bend Motorsport Park on October 15-17.