Will Davison is an Australian racing driver who currently competes in the V8 Supercars Championship. He debuted in the V8 SC in 2004, scoring 19 wins and 54 podiums until 2016.
Earlier in a career, Davison was the 2001 Australian Formula Ford champion, but since 2006 his only interest was V8 Supercars Championship. His best season was 2009 when he won the famous Bathurst 1000 and finished as a runner-up in the V8 SC championship. He recorded one more Bathurst 1000 victory in 2016.
Formula Ford champion in debut season
Will Davison was born on August 30, 1982, in Melbourne. The racing was in his blood, as he was a member of the known racing family. His grandfather Lex and father Richard were also racing drivers and Australian champions, so it was natural for Will to follow the footsteps of his ancestors.
12-year-old Davo, as he was nicknamed by his friends, began racing with go-karts and until 1999 he claimed over twenty major karting titles. In 2000, he moved into the Formula Ford, driving the Stealth Van Diemen RF95. He was sixth in the Australian championship and won the Victorian state title. Next year, he moved forward and won the Australian title, with twelve wins in 17 races. It's interesting that the second and third in the standings were Will Power and Jamie Whincup, who later became the world's famous racers and champions.
Davison moved to England in 2002
In 2002, with Formula One on his mind, Will Davison moved to England and continued to compete in the British Formula Renault Championship. With three podiums in 13 races, he finished fourth in the points, behind Danny Watts, Jamie Green and Lewis Hamilton.
The next step in the open wheeler categories was the British Formula 3 Championship. In nine rounds Will was driving for Alan Docking Racing, in last three rounds he moved to Menu F3 Motorsport team. The highlight of the season was his pole position and victory at Croft circuit. It remained his only victory and Will finished 8th in the points.
Testing a Formula One car in 2004
He continued to compete for Menu in 2004, but just for five rounds, because his budget was too short for a full season. In ten races, Will scored three podiums and finished 13th in the final classification. In November 2004, Will's childhood dream came true, as he was driving the Formula One car during the official test for Minardi F1 team at Misano.
Despite good performance at the test, he was far from the future in Formula One. He figured out that his racing career could turn into another racing discipline. During 2004, Will had initial experience in the V8 Supercars Championship, driving for Team Dynamik both at Sandown 500 and Bathurst 1000. He was sharing the #14 Holden Commodore with Dale Brede.
Davison joined Dick Johnson Racing in 2005
They retired in both races, but Will showed a promising potential, so he took the role of endurance driver for Dick Johnson Racing for 2005 season. Will participated at Sandown 500 and Bathurst 1000 alongside Steven Johnson in the #17 Ford Falcon. At Sandown, they finished 18th, at Mount Panorama, they were 19th. Davison also participated in one round of the HPDC V8 Supercars Series, scoring three podiums in three races at Queensland Raceway. Such a good results brought him a full-time seat in the #18 Dick Johnson Racing's Ford.
But, before he started the V8 SC career, Will had to finish his single-seater career, so he participated in the 2005-2006 season of the A1 Grand Prix Series, driving for Team Australia. He participated in five rounds (ten races) between October 2005 and January 2006. His best result was sixth place at Estoril and in the home race at Eastern Creek Raceway. The Team Australia took the 13th place of 25 teams.
2006 - first full season in the V8 Supercar Championship
In his first full season in the V8 Supercars Championship, Will's #18 Ford BA Falcon was more in the garage than on the track, so he finished 19th in the points at the end of the season. The highlight of the season was 4th place at Sandown 500, together with Steven Johnson in the #17 Ford.
In 2007, Davison continued to drive the #18 Ford and progressed to tenth place in the championship standings. He scored two podiums, at Bahrain International Circuit and Bathurst 1000. For the third year in a row, he was sharing the car at Sandown and Bathurst with Steven Johnson.
Maiden win in 2008 at Eastern Creek Raceway
In 2007, Davison also had a one-off guest appearance in the Australian GT Championship, driving the Aston Martin DBRS9 for Abcor Racing at Phillip Island. In three races, he finished in the second place two times.
Davison remained with Dick Johnson Racing in 2008 V8 Supercars season, reaching his maiden V8 SC victory in March at Eastern Creek Raceway (Sydney). Later in the season, he won one more race at Winton Raceway, to finish 5th in the championship standings. At Bathurst 1000, Will Davison and Steven Johnson were fighting for the win, but after a tyre delamination late in the race, they finished sixth.
2009 Bathurst victory with Holden Racing Team
In 2009, Davison joined Holden Racing Team, to drive the #22 Holden VE Commodore alongside teammate Garth Tander in the #2 car. The season started with two podiums at Adelaide Street Circuit and became Davison's career-best season. He scored two individual wins at Sandown and Queensland as well as two endurance wins at Phillip Island and Bathurst, sharing the car with Tander. Davison added ten more podiums to finish second in the championship, behind uncatchable Jamie Whincup and one place ahead of teammate Tander.
The season 2010 was opposite to the previous. A poor reliability of his Holden, lots of technical issues and lack of luck, threw him down in the classification to 22nd place. He didn't score any victory and podium, so he decided to leave the team at the end of the season.
Moving to Ford Performance Racing in 2011
For 2011, Davison signed with Ford Performance Racing to drive the #6 Ford Falcon. He returned to the front of the V8 SC field, taking four pole positions and finishing the season in 7th place. He didn't win but reached six podiums. In the endurance races, he shared the car with Luke Youlden and Mika Salo, finishing on the podium at Phillip Island and Surfers Paradise.
In 2012, Will had a great season and he won the Pole Award as a driver with most pole positions, as he was the fastest qualifier eight times. He converted those poles into eight wins. He won one of the endurance races, at the Surfers Paradise, sharing the car with Mika Salo. Although only the champion Jamie Whincup had more wins than Davison, Will finished fourth in the points, behind Whincup, Craig Lowndes and Mark Winterbottom.
In 2013, Davison moved one step up and finished third in the championship classification, behind Whincup and Lowndes. Davison has won two times, at Pukehoke and Townsville. In the endurance races, he shared the car with Steve Owen, finishing third at Sandown 500 and seventh at Bathurst 1000.
Two seasons with Mercedes
A new challenge followed in 2014, as Davison joined Mercedes – a new manufacturer in the V8 Supercars Championship. He was driving the #9 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG for Erebus Motorsport. With one single podium, the third place at Townsville, Davison finished 14th in the final classification. At Bathurst 1000, he was sharing the car with his older brother Alex and they finished 4th.
Will was also participating at Bathurst 12 Hour race, driving the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 for Erebus Motorsport, alongside Jack Le Brock and Greg Crick. They finished third overall.
One more season with Mercedes and Erebus Motorsport followed in 2015. Davison scored a sensational win at Barbagallo Raceway, taking second ever victory for Erebus Motorsport. In the rest of the season, Davison was no higher than 7th, so he finished the championship in 15th place. At Bathurst 1000, Davison brothers were together again in the #9 Mercedes and they finished 12th.
2016 - second victory at Mount Panorama
One more change of the team followed in 2016. Will Davison joined Tekno Autosports to drive the #19 Holden VF Commodore. Before the start of the V8SC season, Will participated at Bathurst 12 Hour race with Tekno's McLaren 650S GT3, sharing the car with two British drivers Rob Bell and Andrew Watson. They finished 8th.
In the 2016 V8 Supercars Championship, Davison scored his 18th career victory, winning the second race at Tasmanian Symmons Plains Raceway in April. The next success came in October at Mount Panorama, where he and Jonathon Webb surprisingly won Bathurst 1000 race. At the end of the season, Davison was fifth in the final standings.
For the 2017 V8 Supercars season, Davison renewed a contract with Tekno Autosports.
Photos: Will Davison Official FB,