Gary Bonwick and Paul Bruce with their Mazda RX2 at Morgan Park Raceway yesterday.
Gary Bonwick and Paul Bruce with their Mazda RX2 at Morgan Park Raceway yesterday. Gerard Walsh

Drivers work as a team

IT is a long way from San Diego to Morgan Park but that is the sporting journey for racing car driver Paul Bruce.

The Warwick pipe layer represented Australia in baseball and then played professionally for the San Diego Padres.

Now two decades later, he has a Mazda RX2 which he drives with former Warwick resident Gary Bonwick.

Bonwick was the driver and Bruce in the pits as they came third in a field of 55 in their class at the recent Phillip Island Classics in Victoria.

The event attracted 550 cars and is the biggest in Australia.

They were again in the top three with Bruce in the driver's seat at the weekend in the Queensland Historic Racing Car Club of Queensland race meeting at Morgan Park Raceway.

Bruce was about a second behind the leader on each lap early yesterday and put that difference down to his weight.

“I am 130kg and Gary is 80,” he said.

The extra weight in the Mazda does slow the speed generated by a little rotary engine.

But he has no intention of losing weight so the car goes faster.

“Everyone knows me as the big fellow,” Bruce said.

But his teammate was quick to add that Bruce was no slouch as a motor racing driver.

“It was his first meeting (as a driver) for 18 months at the weekend,” Bonwick said.

Most people would not consider motor racing a team sport but it is just that for Bonwick and Bruce.

The sport is as much about what happens in the pits and the lead up to events as what happens on the track.



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