George is taking his career as a racing driver to a whole new level with his switch to Matt Stone Racing this year, and it’s a case of deja vu …With his family’s solid support, he is set to achieve his ambitions as a Supercar driver.
You spent last year racing with Sonic Motorsports in the Dunlop Series. How would you rate the season?
I’d rate it a B, if I’m honest. There were times when I was really happy with our pace, like qualifying 6th on debut in Adelaide and placing 2nd in race two in Townsville – but we were a bit up and down in performance throughout the year, and that really hurt us. Sometimes it was me as a rookie, sometimes I think it may have been the car, but all in all I think we have some things to be proud of and a few things to work on for this year.
You have switched teams this year to Matt Stone Racing. Tell us about the team.
One of the things I’m really excited about is the team this year. Matt Stone is the son of Jim Stone, one of racing’s legendary Stone Brothers, who created one of the most successful V8 Supercar teams in history – it was with Jimmy that Marcos Ambrose won his two V8 Supercar titles, so you know the pedigree is there! Matt has been slowly building a really strong team up in Queensland, and with his dad selling his stake in Stone Brothers Racing last year, has even employed him! Things are looking great; we have a great car and a great engineering group to help make the car fast – it’s really up to the driver this year.
What is the historical significance behind your union with this team?
Well, it’s really interesting. Dad (Andrew Miedecke) hired Jimmy and his brother Ross all the way from New Zealand to engineer our racing team all the way back in the OXO Sierra days. It was from that they built their reputation and team in Australia, and to be driving for Matt … our fathers raced together, and now we will be racing … it’s pretty special. #35 was what dad used back then, so I’m bringing it out of retirement. Hopefully it’ll be good luck!
What’s the goal for this season?
Well, if I’m not winning and contesting for wins this year, it’s not enough. I have the team, I have the car, I have the engineer – I’m ready to go and get some results. From my first impression of the car, I think we’ll be in a position to do that for sure – the thing is a rocket!
It’s going to be an interesting year in the main series with 2 new manufacturers, Mercedes and Nissan joining Ford and Holden. Is the plan to get into the main series in the future, and have there been any opportunities for an endurance drive?
The plan is definitely to pursue a main series drive, so we’re working hard at that, but at the moment I need to produce some results. Post Clipsal (Adelaide) I’ll be having those conversations about endurance drives, and a good finish will definitely help! The main series will be interesting for sure. Mercedes and Nissan have great motorsport history but at the same time, Ford and Holden have been at it a while and have the formula for success here pretty much dialled. That being said, I think there will be a few surprises this year!
Short answer: no! The car is almost repaired a year later, and I know I’ll never drive it. EVER. But hey, I probably deserve that. I would like it on record that I was leading at the time though!
All jokes aside, Dad is my greatest supporter, and I don’t know what I’d do without him. At the end of last year I had a few doubts, but he always believes in me and pushes me to be my best. Not much more you can ask for from a parent than that … And he gets it. He’s a racer. He’s been there!
You’ve had a lot of success in the V8 Utes in the past and unlike many other drivers on the grid, spent some time in Nascar under Marcos Ambrose. Looking back, do you think your time in the US has given you a unique advantage?
I’m not sure. I definitely have a breadth of skill that some of the other guys don’t; I feel like I’m very versatile and capable in different areas of the sport – but at the same time V8 Supercars are such a specific technique, such a specialised skill set, that really what counts is being good at driving this specific car. I think I’m getting there.
Give a shout out to your sponsors and supporters …
The most pivotal person in my racing career thus far (apart from Dad) has to be Jason Gomersall. Through his company, iSeek Communications, he has supported me in some way or another since we met in 2008, and being able to count on him as a friend as well has been amazing. He races too, so he knows what it takes, knows how I feel sometimes and has been a great support. I really feel like I have great support in Port Macquarie as well, and returning home to the well wishes of friends and family is always an amazing boost.
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This article can be found in issue 88 of Greater Port Macquarie Focus