Paul Dumbrell will race for his younger brother Lucas’ eponymous team at this weekend’s WD-40 Phillip Island SuperSprint, following the sudden withdrawal of regular driver Nick Percat due to an ongoing infection.

Percat came to the V8 Supercars Championship season’s penultimate round under an injury cloud, having only recently been discharged from hospital following treatment for an infection in his foot.

Despite being given the all-clear to participate in Friday’s practice sessions, Percat reported to his team that he was not feeling up to completing the rest of the weekend and elected to return to hospital for further treatment.

The team had pencilled in Pirtek Enduro Cup co-driver Karl Reindler to replace Percat under such circumstances, but made the last-minute call to put Dumbrell – who has served as co-driver to defending series champion Jamie Whincup at Red Bull Racing – in the #222 Holden Commodore.

“Nick started to feel unwell and he made the call at 10:30 that he didn’t feel up to racing, and by chance Paul was on his way to Phillip Island to support Triple Eight, and I thought why not put him in the car – what did I have to lose?” team owner Lucas Dumbrell said.

“It was purely because the opportunity came up and it was too good to pass on. We’ve already spoken to Karl about doing the enduros next year, and if Paul wasn’t on his way [to the circuit] then Karl would have been in the car.

“It’s such a unique and special opportunity to have my brother race for me before he hangs up the helmet.”

Percat is the third driver to be replaced heading into this weekend’s trio of races. Super Black Racing elected to rest regular driver Andre Heimgartner in place of Chris Pither with a view to evaluating him for a full-time drive in 2016, while Erebus Motorsport V8 was loaned Prodrive Racing endurance co-driver Dean Canto to assist with its set-up development, replacing regular driver Ash Walsh.

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Geoff Burke

Journalist at MotorsportM8
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