Walsh prepared to put foot down into the unknown
ASH Walsh gets his first drive in his new car on Saturday and it's an opportunity he can't let go to waste.
Walsh and the rest of the 2015 V8 Supercars fleets will be at Sydney Motorsport Park to launch the season with the V8 Supercars SuperTest this weekend.
For Walsh it is the opportunity to get a feel for his new Erebus Motorsport V8 heading into his first year full-time in the top category.
With most of his rivals having been through it all before, Walsh has ground to make up.
"I'm sure on Saturday morning I'll be pretty nervous," the Yamanto resident said from his hotel in Parramatta yesterday.
In the meantime Walsh's time has been filled with a range of commitments he's having to get used to, including extensive photos and filming.
Walsh has not had a chance to sit in his new car yet, so he is not expecting to set any lap records this weekend.
While plenty of the big guns will be out to beat each other at the Shootout on Sunday, Walsh's priorities are more basic.
"If I can come away feeling confident with the car it'll be a success," he said.
"I'd like to go well.
"Times will come with my confidence in the car.
"The best way to be successful is to be confident in the car's ergonomics and with the engineer."
In that regard Walsh is confident, having been teamed with Erebus technical director Wes McDougall.
McDougall has engineered drivers including Tim Slade and James Courtney in the past.
After this weekend Walsh will only have a single test day at Queensland Raceway on February 19 to prepare for round one, the Clipsal 500 at Adelaide on the weekend of March 1-2.
If he is worried he is not showing it.
"I would say a lot of teams are in the development stage at this part of the year," Walsh said.
"We've certainly got some work to do.
"This weekend is a bit of a yardstick, which is why it is hard to say what our expectations are.
"I feel like I've ticked all the boxes I need to in my mind.
"The rest is up to the unforeseeable fate.
"There are so many variables.
"Hopefully it all goes smoothly."