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Percat secures Supercars lifeline at MSR, doesn't regret WAU stint

Nick Percat has secured his Supercars future by landing the Matt Stone Racing seat that will be vacated by Erebus-bound Jack Le Brocq at the end of the current season.

Nick-Percat-Matt-Stone

The MSR deal is a lifeline for Percat who has battled through a tough season and a half with Walkinshaw Andretti United.

He was long expected to part ways with the team at the end of his current deal, which was recently confirmed, and was known to be part of a group of experienced drivers in the frame for the MSR seat along with Scott Pye.

The 34-year-old has won out in the fight for the MSR seat, which could be the final full-time vacancy on the grid next season, should James Courtney and Aaron Love form an expanded Blanchard Racing Team line-up as expected.

Percat has history of success at family-run teams, having picked up race wins at both LD Motorsport and Brad Jones Racing, the latter proving to be a particularly happy home between 2017 and 2021.

The 2011 Bathurst 1000 winner will partner the recently re-signed rookie Cam Hill at MSR next season, taking over what has been a race-winning seat in Le Brocq's hands this season.

“I’m really excited to be joining MSR for the 2024 and 2025 Supercars seasons,” said Percat, whose last of his four Supercars race wins came in 2020.

“I really like the way Matt runs his team and the family feel and culture he’s got going on there. It only took a few minutes to realise I was keen to join the team when I met with him at the workshop and saw the team for myself.

“It’s really positive and I can’t wait, but also for me personally, it’s cool to be back aligned with the GM family. Obviously it’s a big part of my family’s history and my love of road cars started thanks to Holden, so it’s very cool to be driving back under that banner.

Nick Percat, Walkinshaw Andretti United Ford Mustang GT

Nick Percat, Walkinshaw Andretti United Ford Mustang GT

Photo by: Edge Photographics

“The results that MSR has achieved with the new Gen3 car have been super impressive. I can definitely see why and how they are so strong now that I’ve got to know Matt and a few guys a bit better.

“I’m looking forward to continuing that, and the team itself is in a really good position to kick some goals over the next few years. Hopefully I’m a big part of that and can help with a bit of experience and we can keep pushing towards the front.

“Matt’s assembled a great group of guys and girls there that can get the job done. I can’t wait to be a part of a new team and drive a new car for the upcoming seasons.”

For team owner Matt Stone, signing Percat makes good on the promise to replace Erebus-bound Le Brocq with a proven race winner.

“We are thrilled to have Nick joining the team on a multi-year deal,” Stone said.

“When we were looking for a driver to fill our available seat for 2024, we were looking for someone with proven race-winning experience. It’s exciting to sign a driver that has not only achieved race wins multiple times, but also won Bathurst and had such strong consistent championship results in his time at BJR.

“The Bathurst 1000 is a clear goal on the top of MSR’s list. After our maiden race win earlier this year in Darwin, having someone like Nick in the team next year, is another big step up for the team.

“I look forward to the results that we can unlock with Nick, and together with teammate Cameron Hill will be a strong combination over the next two seasons.”

Percat doesn't regret WAU stint

Nick Percat, Walkinshaw Andretti United Ford Mustang GT

Nick Percat, Walkinshaw Andretti United Ford Mustang GT

Photo by: Edge Photographics

Percat says he holds no regrets over his short, and mostly unsuccessful, stint at Walkinshaw Andretti United.

Percat joined the team at the end of 2021, walking out on a contract with Brad Jones Racing to partner Chaz Mostert. It was always thought to be a brave move, given he would be up against the powerful combo of Mostert and engineer Adam DeBorre, but few would have predicted just how much Percat would struggle.

Qualifying has been a particular battle for Percat during his time at WAU with a number of different race engineers, and even the switch from Gen2 to Gen3, not providing a regular fix to his woes. He will be replaced in the #2 WAU entry by rookie Ryan Wood in 2023.

With his MSR deal now secured, Percat makes no secret of the fact that his WAU stint has fell short of expectations.

“There's absolutely no doubting, or nowhere to hide, on that,” he told Autosport. “I wouldn't say the last two years have been great.

However at the same time he is adamant that he doesn't regret having made the move when he did.

“I've been asked if I've regretted the decision to go to WAU, but there is definitely none of that. Everything kind of happens for a reason and the cards just didn't fall the right way with the timings of things at WAU.

“But I'm definitely keen to get stuck in and make this [MSR deal] work.”

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