News Archive
John Bowe Racing
Wilson Security

Latest Photos

Well, not only is Bathurst the BIGGEST meeting on everyone’s race calendar, this year it's even more Special - we celebrate 50 years of the running of one of the most famous races in the World - right here. This year’s Supercheap Bathurst 1000 represents the end of an era.

V8 supercars will never be the same again, be that good or bad, the cars that will evolve with the Car of The Future will behave very differently, but that’s next year!

This year’s race will not be any different to the rest of the year so far. That means a battle between FPR and 888 Vodaphone team. There are a number of 888 built and designed cars in the race but such is the excellence of the whole 888 operation that no one in a customer car can threaten them for long.

My heart feeling is that Mark Winterbottom and Richo win the race. It would be a tragedy if Frosty never gets to stand on the top step of the podium at Bathurst. He is an incredibly talented driver but like Glenn Seton before him, his Bathurst luck has been very patchy.

Common sense and playing it safe would make me pick one of the 888 pair, but which one?

The pit lane queuing can cost the race, as we saw last year, so the qualifying and early laps of the race mean more now than any other time in history. Now, to fuel consumption, 888 seem to be able to roll the dice on that one too. It's probably the easiest Bathurst to pick a winner for years; such has been the dominance of the two teams.

Because of my past associations, I'm keen on Brighty and Andy Jones, I have massive respect for the BJR engineering team too. They are certainly a shot at the podium but to win it will require a few problems for FPR and 888.

Also spare a thought for the third FPR car. David Reynolds is blindingly quick, even if he sometimes doesn't understand why? He has a very solid co driver with lots of experience in Dean Canto. Don’t be surprised to see them on the podium. As for HRT and the rest, I just can't see it I'm afraid, even with the brilliance of Garth Tander. So, my pick, Frosty and Richo head to head with Jamie and Paul Dumbrell, bacuse that’s Murphies law! I don’t mean Greg Murphy?

Finally, of course Lowndes will figure, he may well win it, as might Will Davison but having to stack during the pit stops will probably disadvantage some of those top cars.  It will be very strategic and the truth is that no one can really pick the winners.  Another combo I like is the Giz and Luke but I still reckon the winner will come from those two top teams.  If you back any of these guys and win, the rules are you have to cut me a slice!

Enjoy the 50th Bathurst 1000.

Cheers JB
The Sandown 500k race returns to its rightful home. How good is that! The tradition of Sandown goes back 50 years; it's a fantastic facility and a uniquely challenging track. Wade Calderwood has made some major changes and improvement since he took control of the historic venue. I've been fortunate enough to win the Sandown 500 several times.  It's just as difficult to win as the Bathurst 1000. The track is hard on machinery and any weakness will be exposed.

This race could have a major impact on the championship which is still wide open. Co-drivers will be the key to this race.  The pressure to do an outstanding job is not to be underestimated. The strategy requirements put massive pressures on team engineers, and pressure can do lots of things. My pick is Mark Winterbottom teaming up with Steve Richards, a strong car, strong drivers pairing and a strong desire which let’s face it, they will need to beat the 888 steam roller. As a good each way, the BOC car is very sentimental to me.  Brighty and Andy Jones are a top combination.  I would love to see them do well...

Don't miss a minute.
phoca thumb l IMG 3842Phar Lap... return to Sandown TCM
I know I've said this before, but I expect nothing this weekend but I will strive to get some sort of result. Not only is Mustang Sally carrying more penalties than Phar Lap but most of the other top car and driver combinations have been given concessions of less weight and more revs to ensure that we can't win again... Just trying to make it equal (figure that one out).

The winner though will be Gavin Bullas who is a past duel champion, yet miraculously became unseeded this year. Gavin is a top line driver no question, but he has the same car as Sally but he has a 90 kg weight advantage and a massive 900 rpm extra engine revs to use. It's very frustrating. I have to say especially on tracks like Sandown and Bathurst where weight and revs can give a 2 second a lap advantage. Oh well, sometimes it doesn't pay to do a good job.

On a positive note, I'm really looking forward to racing at Sandown again.  I love the track. I first raced here in 1979 in my Elfin Formula Two car, and then later again in ‘79 in a booming Formula 5000.  Now that was an experience for a young bloke, but that's another story!

Cheers JB
The Queensland round for Mustang Sally was truly far better than I expected. We won the round, but Sally was not overly happy with the track. She had way too little front grip, and I hate understeer so it was a big issue. Dick Savy and I work very well together, just as an engineer/driver relationship is mega important in V8Supercars, so is it important in the Touring Car Masters.

We chased the track conditions and car balance constantly, I guess being older with lots of experience is sometimes a help. I'm very proud of what we do. I never lose sight of the fact that it's fun racing and racing with mates. I love the TCM; it's incredibly popular with the race fans and a perfect fit for V8Supercars.

As for the main races I'm regularly astounded at the ability and amazing level that the V8 drivers are at. They are all good and some are great. Count Craig Lowndes in amongst them, an outstanding performance by him. My driver of the meeting though was Russell Ingall. How fantastic was his drive on both days? In an HRT car that both Tander and Courtney have had very random results with, the Enforcer made the car look good. If I was HRT, I would not discard him yet. He truly has years and years ahead of him.
I’ve been on the front row of the grid at Bathurst and older than Russ is now, so everyone STOP talking and asking him about retiring. Beg him to stay; V8 Supercars will be much less appealing without the Enforcer!

Cheers JB
New Track Surface - Will They Set a New Quali Record??
It's hard to believe the Willowbank or Queensland Raceway has been here for 13 years. You know what? I still hold the qualifying record in the WesTrac CAT au Falcon race car. I find it remarkable when you think of the hundreds of millions of dollars that have been spent on V8 Supercar development in that time.
I expect the record will fall this year because the track has been resurfaced and the new formula they use are always blindingly fast, for a while anyway.
This year’s big battle for the V8Supercar crown, intensifies and it will not be resolved this meeting. The hot pace of FPR needs to last a tiny bit longer in race trim. I remember back 13 years ago when my quali lap record was set, as a race car I thought it was a dud and ate it's rear tyres so fast it was scary.
FPR need to finish in front of Jamie and Craig more often, stating the obvious, that's how it needs to play out. Tyre life and consistency of results from now til years end will be with the eventual winner - watch this space...
The Queensland teams have a big advantage with the track resurfacing because they understand the tyre life thing better. Expect big things from Stone Brothers and on my hope list there is my good mate Stevie Johnson who is an awesome driver and my 'pupil' David Wall in the Wilson Security car who is making a good fist of his first season in the category.  

David has been improving steadily over this his first rookie year and has been beset by more than his share of bad luck. I think he has the potential in the long term and Wilson Security are a Blue Chip non Motor Industry sponsor, they deserve some good runs.

QR is My Home Track - Well Almost
I raced for Dick Johnson for 11 seasons and I hope I still have plenty of support and friends at QR this weekend. It's almost like a home track for me and my WesTrac CAT - Wilson Security Mustang Sally. Sally made the trek in 'Big Willy' behind the Caterpillar Prime Mover - 'TopCAT'. As you can see we love nicknames here at JBR.

In TCM this season we have the introduction of rolling weight and rev penalties and I'm expecting we will do it tough this weekend at Queensland Raceway. Both Jimmy Richards and I are carrying big penalties, a bit like the Melbourne Cup favourites. Sometimes the result is dependent on how clever the handicapper is...
Touring Car Masters seems to be the only racing category on a bit of a growth phase right now. We have new cars and car owners committing to the long future of the series almost weekly. Just proves the love for our ol beasts with the supporters of Australian motorsport, these TCM cars have almost developed a cult following of their own...
I can't begin to tell you what a buzz it is to race Sally... I've tested at QR very often (when you could), so I'm hoping that I can still give the race a real shake even with the penalties applied.
A number of my Commercial Partners including Wilson Security, Coateshire and some members of the WesTrac family will be at QR in force, so I'll give it my best shot. It's always nice to do well in front of your supporters and friends - bring it on!
Cheers JB
Hidden Valley, DarwinAfter a pretty ordinary run at Phillip Island, I'm certainly looking forward to running here in Darwin. It's a long and expensive way to travel to the top end but the true facts are that it is a fabulous track and the city of Darwin and its people are awesome. The organisers have been very strong supporters of Muscle Car racing for a long time.

After the confusing numbness of Phillip Island all I want to do is get out there and race... I love the cut and thrust of racing and all the parity and rule making manipulation will not spoil that for me.

Jimmy Richards' Javelin is now a fantastic race car, I saw that in the last few laps at Philip Island. He's not the only bloke to beat but he is always a serious bench mark!

It's only when I'm not racing I realise how much I miss being in the car, after all these years I still get a feeling of anticipation, a little uneasy and on edge which I guess is a good thing.

These are incredibly powerful beasts that are way under tyred, that's why they've long been a huge hit with the fans - with their wayward behaviour has almost made Mustang Sally a star in her own right!

The Tale Continues to Unfold...

In every season of V8Supercars I can remember, there is always a team that hits the ground running... this year it's FPR. The factory Ford team have forged an advantage over every other team. Not by some special black magic, purely by hard work, dedication and focus. Not to mention budget which let's face it is hard to get and even harder to hold on to. The cars FPR field now are honestly amazing.

It's not often that a team has 888 on the ropes on a regular basis but FPR have at the moment. In the old days, Holden would be screaming for a parity adjustment so full marks to them for keeping silent with this one.

Watching the contest between the teams, the Engineers and the drivers will be fascinating over the next few months. Others will win the odd race, nothing surer, but at the end of the season we will see a FPR and 888 with carry the ultimate result. How good is that?

As my heart has always been Ford aligned, I love the upsurge, but the admiration I have for Roland Dane, his team and his drivers knows no bounds. Of course, my very favourite driver if I had a team of my own would be Garth Tander, he will win a race or two because of his extreme talent. But the hard facts are, only FPR and 888 have the ingredients to win the Championship and that's what matters in the end game.

Cheers JB

Feature Video from JB's YouTube

Visit JB's Facebook Page


Visit JB's YouTube Channel