Supercar Xtra Magazine issue #105 features exclusive interviews with Tander and Golding, in addition to with their team bosses Garry and Barry Rogers.
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It all began at Phillip Island in April, 1998. A lanky 21-year-old from Western Australia named Garth Tander was thrust into his Supercars debut with GRM.
Tander had won the 1997 Australian Formula Ford Championship and was set to graduate into Formula Holden the following season, only to be unable to raise the necessary budget. But his career fortunes turned when GRM’s regular driver Steven Richards took a job as test driver with Nissan in the British Touring Car Championship. Tander was promoted into the Supercars drive, kicking off what would be a storied career.
Twenty years on and Tander is still racing for Rogers. He’s gone from the rookie in the field to one of the established drivers, giving Garry Rogers Motorsport its sole Bathurst 1000 win in 2000 and going on to add another two Great Race wins and championship success at the factory-backed Holden stable (HSV Dealer Team and Holden Racing Team). When it was time to move on, Tander returned to where it all began last season.
Tander is now the senior driver at GRM, helping to mentor the latest young talent to be given his big break in the category with the team. He was racing in the Australian Formula Ford Championship when teammate James Golding was born in 1996.
For a country lad from Warragul, Victoria, the professional moving feast that is the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship couldn’t be more different to riding motorbikes around the family property at just four years old.
From a motorsport family, there were times growing- up when both his parents and sister were racing karts. But the family fun turned serious once the now 22-year- old won Australian karting titles before a crack at the big time, the World Rotax Grand Final in Portugal in 2012, where he ranked seventh.
Formula Ford stints followed, where he narrowly missed out on both the Victorian state and national titles. While he may not have captured a Formula Ford crown, Golding had done enough to catch the eye of renowned talent-spotter Garry Rogers, who after taking the man he dubbed ‘Bieber’ under his wing with a mechanic apprenticeship handed him the keys to one of his Supercars.
Golding raced in the Dunlop Super2 Series full-time in 2015 and finished 10th. A strong second season in 2016 saw him claim his first race win and improve to fourth in the standings, leading to main-game promotion in 2018.
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