SIMON Wills and Brad Jones Racing are reuniting 16 years after working together for the majority of a Supercars Championship season.
Wills, the 2002 Queensland 500 winner, was the man called on to replace Brad Jones when the eponymous team owner hung up his helmet three rounds into the 2007 campaign.
Wills saw out the season but never returned to the main game – until now, in a new capacity.
The New Zealander’s business CARMA (Coaching And Race Management Assistance) aims to guide up-and-coming racers, and it has now struck up an alliance with BJR.
That will see selected CARMA drivers and students join the Albury squad at an upcoming Supercars round in South Australia – either Tailem Bend in August or Adelaide in November – to gain experience.
“Since I finished up full-time racing, which was with BJR in 2007, I have always been keen in helping out younger drivers learn the complete aspects needed to become a full-time racing driver,” said Wills, who also won two Gold Stars.
“I know when I was young and starting out, I would have loved to have had the direction from someone like myself.
“I could have done with the advice during my career and in turn made many mistakes, so now I find it very rewarding to be able to help others learn from the benefit of my own hindsight.
“From starting CARMA, I am now striving to continually improve on CARMA’s systems and coaching. Now combining with BJR greatly improves CARMA’s efforts into the future.
“I loved my time with BJR. The environment and the competitive spirit within the team was fantastic then, and to now be able to share that with new aspiring talent is something I am most grateful for.”
Jones voiced his support for the program.
“When Simon approached me with the idea for the partnership I was more than happy to help out,” he said.
“The CARMA program is important to have in the industry and what he’s doing is fantastic to help bring new talent through the ranks of motorsport.
“I’m excited for BJR to be able to contribute to that and partner with CARMA.”