Simon Wills

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Simon Wills
Nationality New Zealand New Zealander
Born (1976-10-03) 3 October 1976 (age 40)
Auckland, New Zealand
Retired career
Debut season 1993
Championship titles
1996
1998, 1999
1999, 2000
2001
British F3 – Class B
New Zealand Grand Prix
Australian Drivers' Championship
V8 Supercar Development Series
Awards
1996–2002 Jim Clark Trophy, Bruce McLaren Trophy, Owen Steel Trophy, NZGP 1998 & 1999, 2x NZ Gold Stars, 2x Australian Gold Stars

Simon Wills (born 3 October 1976 in Auckland, New Zealand) is a former racing driver who currently runs a graphic design business.[1]

Racing career[edit]

Formula cars[edit]

Wills finished runner up in the 1995 New Zealand Formula Ford Championship. He had gained a large lead in the series, but left the championship two races early to attempt to launch a career in Europe.[1] He won Class B of the British Formula 3 Championship in 1996. However, he didn't have the finances to continue his career in Europe and decided to focus on racing in Australia and New Zealand.[1]

Wills won the 1998 and 1999 New Zealand Grands Prix. He was the Australian Drivers' Champion (Formula Holden) in both 1999 and 2000, and New Zealand Gold Star Champion for 1998 and 1999, including winning the 1999 Tasman Cup. He also holds, or has held, the outright lap record at several tracks, including the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, Hidden Valley Raceway, Pukekohe Park Raceway, Manfeild Autocourse, Canberra Street Circuit and Queensland Raceway, which were all set in a Reynard 94D in Australian Drivers' Championship races.

Touring cars[edit]

Wills won the V8 Supercar Development Series in 2001.[1] In the main V8 Supercar series, he also competed in nine Bathurst 1000s, debuting with Gibson Motorsport in 1998, and finishing in 2007 with Brad Jones Racing.[2] Wills also held the lap record of the Mount Panorama Circuit in Bathurst between the 2001 and 2002 races, having set the lap record during the 2001 Bathurst 1000. Following Bathurst in 2001, Wills completed the remaining rounds in the 2001 season with Briggs Motor Sport, and then drove full-time from 2003 to 2005 with Team Dynamik.[3] In 2007, he drove the bulk of the rounds with Brad Jones Racing after team owner and lead driver Brad Jones retired mid-season.

Wills' most significant achievement in V8 Supercar was winning the 2002 Queensland 500 endurance race for Stone Brothers Racing, co-driving with David Besnard.[3]

Career results[edit]

Wills won the 1999 and 2000 Australian Drivers' Championships in a Reynard 94D, similar to the example pictured above
Season Series Position Car Entrant
1998 Australian Drivers' Championship 8th Reynard 92D Greg Murphy Racing
1999 Australian Drivers' Championship 1st Reynard 94D Birrana Racing Pty Ltd
2000 Australian Drivers' Championship 1st Reynard 94D Birrana Racing

Business[edit]

In the latter years of his racing career, Wills launched a graphic design and signwriting business in Adelaide, South Australia.[1] Formed with his wife, Sinch Creative focuses on motor racing designs amongst other areas.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "Where are they Now? Simon Wills". SpeedCafe. 27 August 2010. Retrieved 19 September 2015. 
  2. ^ Greenhalgh, David; Tuckey, Bill (2013). The official history of The Great Race Bathurst : 50 years. St Leonards, New South Wales: Chevron Publishing Group. ISBN 9780980591231. 
  3. ^ a b Greenhalgh, David; Howard, Graham; Wilson, Stewart (2011). The official history: Australian Touring Car Championship - 50 Years. St Leonards, New South Wales: Chevron Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-9805912-2-4. 
  4. ^ "About Us". Sinch Creative. Retrieved 19 September 2015. 

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Brady Kennett
Winner of the New Zealand Grand Prix
1998 and 1999
Succeeded by
Andy Booth
Preceded by
Scott Dixon
Winner of the Australian Drivers' Championship
1999 and 2000
Succeeded by
Rick Kelly
Preceded by
Dean Canto
Winner of the V8Supercar Development Series
2001
Succeeded by
Paul Dumbrell