Tasmanian rising star ready to take on new challenge
Tasmania’s next young motorsport gun Lochie Dalton is preparing to race one of Australia’s toughest categories in front of his home fans at Race Tasmania on February 11-13.
A graduate of the Toyota Gazoo Racing Australia 86 Series, Dalton makes the step up to the Turtle Wax National Trans Am Series this year where he will drive for Garry Rogers Motorsport, guided by fellow Tasmanian and multiple Supercars champion and NASCAR Cup race winner Marcos Ambrose.
Ambrose recently led the team’s junior combine held at Symmons Plains and Baskerville, but also plays an important role in Dalton’s career as mentor.
The GRM team features a distinct Tasmanian flavour this season as former Supercars racer Owen Kelly returns as teammate to Dalton, while rounding out the three entries is reigning title holder Nathan Herne.
Making his first Turtle Wax Trans Am Series start at home is an exciting proposition for Dalton.
“I’m glad I’m debuting at my home track because it’s almost a bit of pressure off my shoulders as I have a bit of an idea as all my rivals because it’s my home track,” Dalton said.
“I’ll have all my family, friends and supporters there because they are all from Tasmania, so it’s good and it will be my first time racing on the national stage at home so it will be cool.”
Dalton sampled his Ford Mustang for the first time last week at both Symmons Plains and Baskerville where he immediately felt at home.
“I felt pretty comfortable straight away, just everything was there to suit me whereas before when I’ve driven other people’s cars it’s not really set-up for me,” Dalton said
“Everything was really set-up personally for me and having Marcos there to make sure everything’s comfortable, then we tried a few things out along the way, which was super valuable.”
Acknowledged as this country’s leading fosterer of motorsport talent, GRM with Ambrose as its Competition Director provides the perfect environment for Dalton to learn.
“Having Owen (KellY) as a team-mate with all his experience as well as Nathan, I have two good drivers to copy their homework and learn from,” Dalton said.
“I’m in a pretty good situation just to set myself up and learn to keep on moving forward.
“The main goal is to get as much experience, learn as much as I can and then I can be as prepared as possible for my second time around.”
Dalton will be amongst a big field of Trans Am entries in the first round at Symmons Plains for the second-running of Race Tasmania – the first major motorsports event in Australia for 2022. The Trans Ams will race along with the popular Supercheap Auto TCR Australia Series, S5000 Australian Drivers’ Championship and three competitive local Tasmania racing categories.
CLICK HERE for ticketing information to Race Tasmania 2022.