Crompton makes Supercars comeback

Neil Crompton drove a Walkinshaw Andretti United Supercar at Sandown Raceway today.

Crompton makes Supercars comeback

The former racer-turned-series commentator spent the day behind the wheel of a third WAU Holden taking passengers for rides around the Melbourne circuit.

The team's regular drivers Chaz Mostert and Bryce Fullwood were also in action with their Bathurst co-drivers Lee Holdsworth and Warren Luff, while Kurt Kostecki also helped the team get through a packed programme of rides.

"[WAU media manager] Andrew Wiles and [team principal] Bruce Stewart called me a month or so back and Andrew said 'don't swear, don't laugh, but do you want to have a run? Because we've got a huge number of passengers to process and we're going to bring a third racing car," Crompton told Motorsport.com.

"It's been a really intense, busy start to the year across all the different things in my business and I thought, 'you know what, instead of standing behind a computer all day long this might be something nice to do'.

"It was great. I wouldn't describe it as driving, it's probably more functioning the car than driving it. There's a big difference.

"But I revel in the fact that so many people get to experience something they wouldn't normally get to experience. You can't do that in AFL or NRL or cricket or tennis. You can't experience what it's like. It's one of the beautiful things about our business."

Crompton, who retired from full-time Supercars racing at the end of the 2002 season, said power and stability were the noticeable features of the WAU racer.

"You notice the grunt," he said. "A little bit of that is just sticker shock because I'm used to driving around the suburbs at 60 km/h. So as soon as you drive something where the air speed is up it grabs your attention.

Read Also:

"I was really impressed with the general stability and not just over the kerbs. I wasn't anywhere near keeping the rolling speed up or turning in early enough. But I was really impressed at both ends of the straight, there was much more stability at the end of the chute. It's probably a little bit of aero and a little bit of ride control.

"I was quite surprised, I thought 'wow these things ride well'.

"And it's interesting to see the finite brake bias control and the way the front anti-roll bars work. That's good for my job.

"It's a ridiculous privilege. I know I've done a trillion miles in the things, but I'm an older guy and it was a long time ago now. It's not far away from the day where I won't be able to physically or mentally do it. But I felt 100 per cent, it felt like I belonged.

"[Garth] Tander told me that I was wobbling, that was his full and frank assessment."

Crompton had a long, successful career as a driver, working with teams such as the Holden Racing Team, Wayne Gardner Racing, Ford Tickford Racing and Gibson Motorsport along the way.

Neil Crompton and Chad Neylon

Neil Crompton and Chad Neylon

Photo by: Chad Neylon

shares
comments

Related video

Van Gisbergen turned to bike stars for help

Previous article

Van Gisbergen turned to bike stars for help

Next article

Uncertainty over Supercars engine supply

Uncertainty over Supercars engine supply
Load comments

About this article

Series Supercars
Drivers Neil Crompton
Teams Walkinshaw Andretti United
Author Andrew van Leeuwen
Can DJR still be a Supercars powerhouse after Penske? Prime

Can DJR still be a Supercars powerhouse after Penske?

Roger Penske's whirlwind Australian Supercars sojourn is over. After six seasons, three drivers' titles, three teams' championships and a Bathurst 1000 crown, The Captain has sold his controlling stake in Dick Johnson Racing back to the squad and walked away from the category.

Supercars
Feb 26, 2021
Can Whincup be Triple Eight's ruthless leader? Prime

Can Whincup be Triple Eight's ruthless leader?

Supercars' most successful team of the past 15 years is set for a radical shakeup next year when Jamie Whincup retires from driving and takes over the reins at Triple Eight. But does he have what it takes to be the new Roland Dane?

Supercars
Feb 8, 2021
How a lifetime Supercars deal broke down in one year Prime

How a lifetime Supercars deal broke down in one year

David Reynolds inked what was effectively a lifetime deal with Erebus in 2019 – only to walk out a year later. What went wrong?

Supercars
Dec 18, 2020
Why Supercars now needs a new "human salt harvester" Prime

Why Supercars now needs a new "human salt harvester"

Scott McLaughlin has been a controversial figure in Supercars over the past few years but, as he heads off to a fresh challenge in IndyCar, the Australian tin-top series needs to find someone else to fill his drama-filled boots as the category enters a new era...

Supercars
Nov 3, 2020
Why 2020 isn't McLaughlin's greatest title Prime

Why 2020 isn't McLaughlin's greatest title

Scott McLaughlin was quick to describe his third Supercars title as his best yet. But even though it didn't match the dramatic backstory of his 2018 triumph, there's a good reason for him wanting to control the narrative this time around.

Supercars
Oct 2, 2020
Why a Bathurst finale is risky business for Supercars Prime

Why a Bathurst finale is risky business for Supercars

The Bathurst Grand Final may provide Supercars its greatest spectacle yet – but there's a risk it will force the series to face a hard truth.

Supercars
Sep 4, 2020
Why Scott McLaughlin must become an IndyCar driver Prime

Why Scott McLaughlin must become an IndyCar driver

Scott McLaughlin, two-time and current Supercars champion, should have been making his NTT IndyCar Series debut for Team Penske at the GP of Indianapolis, but the Covid-19 pandemic forced a rescheduling that has put the brakes on his career switch. But David Malsher-Lopez explains why the New Zealander deserves this opportunity as soon as possible.

IndyCar
Jul 4, 2020
Tickford's 10-year wait for James Courtney Prime

Tickford's 10-year wait for James Courtney

When the Supercars season resumes James Courtney will be a Tickford Racing driver – but it's not the first time the star driver has flirted with the famous Ford squad.

Supercars
May 19, 2020