Paul Radisich : biography
Paul Radisich (born 9 October 1962 in Auckland) is a New Zealand racing driver of Croat origin. He has competed in saloon cars for many years - both European-style tourers and the V8 Supercars of Australia and New Zealand.
European Touring Cars
He won the 1993 and 1994 Touring Car World Cup events at Monza and at Donington respectively. 1993 was his first British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) season, in a Ford Mondeo prepared by Andy Rouse. He finished 3rd in the series despite only competing in only half the year. He would again drive for Andy Rouse in 1994 where he finished 3rd again behind Gabriele Tarquini for Alfa Romeo and Alain Menu for Renault. Radisich would again drive for Andy Rouse in 1995 but by the end of the 1995 season the car had reached the end of its development cycle and was increasingly uncompetitive during the end of the 1995 season and in the 1996 season when West Surrey Racing took over the Ford team from Andy Rouse. 1996 would be a disappointment for the Ford team with no podium places and Radisich inishing 13th in the championship. 1997 would see a new Mondeo however it to was uncompetitive and would not challenge the front running teams. In 1998 he raced for Peugeot where he again had a disappointing season. He left the series and went to race for Dick Johnson Racing in the V8 Supercar series in Australia.
In 1999 he joined Dick Johnson Racing replacing the departed John Bowe. He remained with Dick Johnson Racing until the end of 2002. In 2003 he joined Briggs Motor Sport which was later sold to British outfit Triple Eight Race Engineering in 2004. In total he has three race wins and eight other podium results in the championship.
Team Kiwi Racing
He surprised a lot of people by signing for the patriotic Team Kiwi Racing for 2 years in 2005 racing in a Holden for the first time, helping the team to their first ever podium finish at Shanghai International Circuit in China, (third). He finished the 2005 season in 14th place, TKR's highest ever finish in a Supercar season.
In the 2006 Supercheap Auto 1000 endurance race at Mount Panorama he had a major crash at around 200 km/h in The Chase. While attempting to overtake Nathan Pretty he ran wide into the dirt and could not brake in time and careered into a tyre wall head on, flipping the car onto its side. Rescue teams had to cut the roof off the car in order to get him out. He was then taken to a nearby hospital and then flown to a hospital in Sydney for further scans. He broke his ankle and sternum in the crash and missed the remainder of the season.
In November 2006 it was confirmed that Radisich had signed for a further 2 years with TKR and would once again be back racing in a Ford for 2007-08. He has commented that he has unfinished business in V8 Supercars.
Paul returned to the cockpit at Barbagallo for the first time since Bathurst, to the delight of many fans. He had a very good result at Pukekohe, the final round to be held at that circuit, finishing 7th in the third race.
Ford Performance Racing terminated its contract to supply and service the TKR Falcon on 31 May 2007. Paul Radisich said he had terminated his contract with TKR following the team's fallout with Ford Performance Racing that ran the car on behalf of TKR. "TKR is in breach of contract and I have therefore terminated my contract with immediate effect."
Toll HSV Dealer Team
The New Zealand international joined fellow Kiwi Craig Baird and regular drivers Rick Kelly and Garth Tander in the Toll HSV ranks for the big endurance races in September and October.
The formal announcement was put on hold until Carrera Cup star and Bathurst rookie David Reynolds was signed and sealed with Super Cheap Auto Racing for the enduros. Reynolds had been in line for a drive with Toll HSV in the big races in September and October, but was happy to transfer to Super Cheap for his V8 Supercar debut without the potential pressure of a fellow drivers championship hanging over him.
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