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Russell locks in more Supercars starts

ROAD TO GLORY: Aaren Russell checks out work on the Newcastle Supercars track in Watt Street on Thursday. Newcastle driver Aaren Russell has a shock Supercars race victory on his mind after securing a deal to contestthe three Enduro Cup rounds this year.
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Russell had already locked in drives with Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport at July’s Townsville 400, the Bathurst 1000 next month and the season-ending Newcastle 500 in late November.

But he will also race the Sandown 500 from September 15 to 17 andGold Coast 600 from October 20 to 22 after extending his contract this week. The deal amounts to completing the remaining Australian rounds of the Supercars series, and he could also drive at the Auckland SuperSprint in early November.

Russell, who ran near the back of the field in Townsville, said it was difficult to compete with the series frontrunners in shorter races, but anything could happen in the Enduro Cup events.

The Novocastrian was competitive at Bathurst last year with co-driver Andre Heimgartner before a busted transaxle ended their race on lap 115.

Their LDM teammates, Nick Percat and Cameron McConville, finished third.

The 26-year-old is still waiting to hear who will co-drivewith him in the Enduro Cup but is relieved to add Sandown to his program.

“It was going to be quite funny, because I was going to race Townsville, then do a couple of go-kart meetingsthen go straight into Bathurst,” he said.

“Now I have Sandown in between and a test day at Winton on Tuesdayas well.”

Russell drove around parts of the partially built Newcastle 500 track on Thursday morning and said it would be “really interesting”.

“The humps and bumps and undulations everywhere is going to be tricky, but I think that adds character to it,” he said.

“It does look a bit like a war zone, but it’s all for a good cause, not only for the round but for the town as well.

“They’re building all these roads, and hopefully they don’t have to touch them for the next 15 years.”

Russell has launched a range of supporter packs on the family’s Go-Karts-Go website, including merchandise, seats in a grandstand beside the Nobbys hairpin, hospitality in the nearby surf club and on-car sponsorship.

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