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Walkinshaw Andretti United rules out 2023 wildcard

Walkinshaw Andretti United has elected against a wildcard entry into the Supercars enduro events at Sandown and Bathurst later this season.

The team had evaluated running a third car for the events with Warren Luff as part of the driver line-up after he was retained for 2023 despite the team signing both Lee Holdsworth and Fabian Coulthard for the enduro meetings.

However, the decision has now been taken not to push ahead with the plans as a result of the costs involved in setting up the Gen3 programme, with the team sticking with its two full-season entries.

“We were really keen to run a Wildcard entry this year at Sandown and Bathurst, but ultimately, with all that has occurred with Gen3 and the costs associated, it unfortunately wasn’t feasible,” team principal Bruce Stewart said.

“As soon as we made the decision not to progress, our first priority was ensuring that Luffy was on the grid this year, because it’s where he belongs.

“It’s disappointing not to bring it to life, Luffy was retained with us for a reason, but it’s something no doubt we will look to do in the future.”

Whilst Luff will continue to work with WAU’s Super2 drivers, he will still compete at Bathurst after a deal was agreed with Team 18 that will see him line-up alongside Scott Pye; the pair having run together at WAU in the past.

Michael Caruso meanwhile will partner Mark Winterbottom in the sister Team 18 entry.

“I’m pumped to have Luffy onboard for the enduro races this year,” Pye admitted. “We’ve obviously got a good history together at Bathurst in particular. I have a lot of faith in his ability and when he is in the car.

“I feel very confident that he’s the man for the job. I’m so excited to have him on board and I think for the whole team it’s a great opportunity.

“Luffy is certainly one of my good friends and I guess that relationship began when we were first co-drivers and he’s a guy that’s loved up and down pit lane.

“You can’t not get along with Luffy, he’s certainly become a good friend of mine. It’s exciting to go to Bathurst and do that race with a mate and feel like you have the potential of standing on the top step is very special.”