A Phillip Island expert on two wheels, Troy Bayliss will become a rookie all over again this weekend when the triple World Superbike champion makes his V8 Supercar race debut at the famous Australian circuit.
Since retiring from motorcycle racing less than a year ago, Bayliss has made a successful transition to four wheels with test days for TeamVodafone, Jack Daniels Racing and Paul Morris Motorsports.
Bayliss then accepted an invitation to join Dean Fiore at the Paul Morris outfit for the L&H 500 at Phillip Island and the SuperCheap Auto 1000 at Bathurst's iconic Mount Panorama.
After spending time with the team and working on his fitness for the first endurance event of the season, Bayliss said he can't wait to get behind the wheel of the #12 Commodore which will carry a 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,” he continued. “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 added that while he will be a V8 Supercar rookie this weekend, he can count on his past success at the Phillip Island circuit, where he competed in world championship events as both a WSBK and MotoGP rider.
“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 is a three time World Superbike Champion there is a lot I can learn from him,” 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 commences on Friday September 11, 2009.
Bayliss will compete in either Sprint Race A or B the following day before sharing driving duties with Dean Fiore in the 500 kilometre race on Sunday September 13, 2009.