Having been with the team since 2017, Tom Moore stepped up to engineer Will Brown’s #9 Commodore for his rookie Supercars season.
The duo have seen incredible success across their first year together and are looking forward to seeing what 2022 will bring.
This was your first season as a race engineer. How would you summarise the year?
TM: The season surpassed every expectation that Will and I had the start of the year. At the beginning of the year Barry had what we thought were lofty expectations, thinking we’d be on a podium by the end of the year. I didn’t think that was realistic but he was obviously dead right and we were better than that again.
You and Will were both considered rookies this year, do you think that was a benefit for your relationship?
TM: I think it benefited my relationship with Will because we appreciated the role that each of us were in more because we knew that we were both still finding our feet. We didn’t place too much pressure on each other in the early days. It also made it more satisfying when we’ve come from a similar place and we both found success together. We experienced a lot of firsts together which was really exciting because we both had the same emotions at the same time. We could appreciate what each other was going through because we understood and had compassion for each other in that way. Our relationship has probably become more serious as the year has gone on because the expectations have changed.
What would you say was the most challenging moment for you this season?
TM: The whole first half of the year was challenging personally. I was still finding my feet in a new job and then as I got more comfortable with what I was doing, we started having other issues so it was important for me to keep Will upbeat. It doesn’t sound like a hard thing to do because he’s so chirpy all of the time but behind closed doors, he can get a bit down on himself when things go wrong. I always want to make sure that he’s in the best headspace possible because I know how much that can affect any race driver’s performance so that was probably one of the bigger challenges.
Was there a moment you were particularly proud of this season?
TM: I don’t think I was ever proud of myself personally, it was more about what we achieved as a car crew. There was a lot of hard work that went on in the COVID break so to come out at Sydney so strong was really satisfying. It made me proud of the team after putting in the hours, we managed to reap the rewards for it. Plus, Will was doing an excellent job on track to get everything he possibly could out of the car we had given him. It was an awesome moment for everyone involved to get those results.
You said after Will’s win that you could retire now – does that mean you ticked all the boxes you wanted to this year?
TM: I’ve 100% ticked all of the boxes I wanted to this year. I regret saying that in hindsight because it sounds pretty bad but that was the feeling at the time, we had achieved everything we set out to do. We ticked every box, made more boxes and ticked all of those, it was so much bigger and better than any of us imagined it being.
What are your expectations heading into the 2022 season?
TM: I really hope we can keep up the form. It was something I was very conscious of rolling into Bathurst, we wanted to prove that we weren’t just a one trick pony at Sydney and we could go out and do it again at a different circuit. I expect both cars to be well into the top ten in almost every session next year. I expect us to go strength to strength, there’s no reason why we should slow down. We don’t have anyone getting old, we don’t have anyone leaving, it’s only going to get better.