Michael Caruso (born 25 May 1983) is an Australian professional motor racing driver. Caruso competes in the Pirtek Enduro Cup, co-driving a Holden ZB Commodore for Team 18 alongside Mark Winterbottom.

Early career

Caruso began his career in go-karts at age 12,[1] before graduating to Formula Ford in 2001. He moved to Formula 3 in 2002 and won the Australian Formula 3 Championship in 2003.[2] Despite offers to move to FIA Formula 3000 in Europe, he chose to join the Holden Young Lions team in the V8 Supercars Development Series for 2004.[1] After a poor start he quit the team mid-season. In 2005 Caruso competed in the first two rounds of the Australian Formula 3 Championship, before moving to Europe to be test and reserve driver for the F3000 outfit Team Astromega.

Touring cars

Development Series

In 2006 he returned to Australia and to the V8 Supercars Development Series with Jim Morton's Decina Racing, finishing 4th in the championship. In 2007 he was runner-up in the Development Series, again with Jim Morton's renamed Ford Rising Star program. He also made three main-game V8 Supercars starts in this period. The first of which was at the 2006 Bathurst 1000 as a replacement for Mark Porter in a Brad Jones Racing entry. Porter had a serious crash on the Friday of the event and later died in hospital. In 2007, Caruso entered the Sandown 500 and Bathurst 1000 with WPS Racing.[3]

Garry Rogers Motorsport

In 2008, Caruso was signed to compete in his first full season in V8 Supercars, driving a Holden VE Commodore for Garry Rogers Motorsport, where he replaced Dean Canto. In 2009, Caruso won his first championship race at the Skycity Triple Crown at Hidden Valley Raceway. He also finished on the podium at the 2009 Bathurst 1000, co-driving with Lee Holdsworth, and in the second race of the Sydney 500.[4] Caruso stayed at the team until 2012, only scoring one further podium in this period.

Caruso placed 15th in the 2012 V8 Supercars Championship driving a Holden VE Commodore

Nissan Motorsport

In 2013, Caruso moved to Nissan Motorsport, a four car team running the Nissan Altima L33. The team was the first to introduce a new manufacturer to the category under the New Generation V8 Supercar (then known as Car of the Future) regulations in 2013.[5] The team largely struggled with the new package and Caruso finished 23rd in the championship. The highlight of the year for Caruso was at the Winton 360, where he finished second in the opening race. Caruso had been leading the race at the conclusion of the first half of the split race, however was beaten by teammate James Moffat to victory in the second half.[6]

In 2014, Caruso finished a career-high 10th in the championship, despite only scoring one podium, in the second race of the Gold Coast 600. Caruso also took pole at the non-championship V8 Supercars Challenge race, a support event to the Australian Grand Prix. Having featured Norton 360 sponsorship in 2013 and 2014, from 2015 onwards, Caruso sported a corporate Nissan and Nismo livery. After another lean year in 2015, Caruso began 2016 strongly at the season-opening Adelaide 500. Caruso finished second in the Sunday race and led the championship following the event.[7] At the 2016 CrownBet Darwin Triple Crown, Caruso won his second career championship race, seven years after his first and coincidentally once again at Hidden Valley Raceway.[8] On the 30th of January 2019 it was announced that Caruso would lose his drive with Nissan Motorsport. He will not compete full time in 2019 and is yet to announce an ENDURO drive. [9]

Career results

Season Series Position Car Team
1997 Queensland Junior Kart Championship 1st ? - Yamaha Caruso Racing
Victorian Junior Kart Championship 1st
Australian Junior Intercontinental A Title 1st
North American Junior Intercontinental A Title 1st
1998 Queensland Intercontinental A Title 1st Caruso Racing
2000 Victorian Formula A Kart Title 1st Jim Morton
2001 Australian Formula Ford Championship 23rd Spectrum 06 - Ford Caruso Racing
2002 Australian Formula 3 Championship 5th Dallara F301 - Alfa Romeo Caruso Racing
Victorian Road Racing Championship 1st
2003 Australian Formula 3 Championship 1st Dallara F301 - Alfa Romeo Caruso Racing
Australian Drivers' Championship 11th Reynard 94D - Holden Ralt Australia
2004 Konica Minolta V8 Supercar Series 24th Holden VX Commodore Holden Young Lions
2005 Australian Drivers' Championship 5th Dallara F301 - Alfa Romeo Caruso Racing
2006 Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series 4th Ford BA Falcon Decina Racing
2007 Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series 2nd Ford BA Falcon Ford Rising Stars Racing
2008 V8 Supercar Championship Series 18th Holden VE Commodore Garry Rogers Motorsport
2009 V8 Supercar Championship Series 11th Holden VE Commodore Garry Rogers Motorsport
2010 V8 Supercar Championship Series 11th Holden VE Commodore Garry Rogers Motorsport
2011 International V8 Supercars Championship 14th Holden VE Commodore Garry Rogers Motorsport
2012 International V8 Supercars Championship 15th Holden VE Commodore Garry Rogers Motorsport
2013 International V8 Supercars Championship 23rd Nissan Altima L33 Nissan Motorsport
2014 International V8 Supercars Championship 10th Nissan Altima L33 Nissan Motorsport
2015 International V8 Supercars Championship 12th Nissan Altima L33 Nissan Motorsport
2016 International V8 Supercars Championship 10th Nissan Altima L33 Nissan Motorsport
2017 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship 13th Nissan Altima L33 Nissan Motorsport
2018 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship 18th Nissan Altima L33 Nissan Motorsport
2019 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship 28th Holden ZB Commodore
Ford Mustang GT
Garry Rogers Motorsport
Tickford Racing
2020 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship 32nd Ford Mustang GT Tickford Racing

Bathurst 1000 results

Year Team Car Co-driver Position Laps
2006 Brad Jones Racing Ford Falcon BA Australia Dale Brede
New Zealand Mark Porter
DNF 59
2007 WPS Racing Ford Falcon BF Australia Grant Denyer 15th 159
2008 Garry Rogers Motorsport Holden Commodore VE Australia Lee Holdsworth DNF 139
2009 Garry Rogers Motorsport Holden Commodore VE Australia Lee Holdsworth 3rd 161
2010 Garry Rogers Motorsport Holden Commodore VE Australia Greg Ritter 10th 161
2011 Garry Rogers Motorsport Holden Commodore VE Australia Marcus Marshall 10th 161
2012 Garry Rogers Motorsport Holden Commodore VE Australia Greg Ritter 5th 161
2013 Nissan Motorsport Nissan Altima L33 New Zealand Daniel Gaunt 25th 147
2014 Nissan Motorsport Nissan Altima L33 Australia Dean Fiore 15th 158
2015 Nissan Motorsport Nissan Altima L33 Australia Dean Fiore 13th 161
2016 Nissan Motorsport Nissan Altima L33 Australia Dean Fiore 8th 161
2017 Nissan Motorsport Nissan Altima L33 Australia Dean Fiore 6th 161
2018 Nissan Motorsport Nissan Altima L33 Australia Dean Fiore DNF 69
2019 Tickford Racing Ford Mustang Mk.6 Australia Cameron Waters 20th 148
2020 Tickford Racing Ford Mustang Mk.6 Australia Lee Holdsworth 7th 161

† Porter was the entered driver but was killed in a support race. Caruso would replace him.

References

  1. ^ a b http://www.michaelcaruso.com.au/about/ About Michael Caruso
  2. ^ http://www.speedsport-magazine.com/race-driver-database/biography/Michael-Caruso-,2171.html Speedsport Magazine Driver Database Profile
  3. ^ 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.
  4. ^ 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.
  5. ^ "Nissan confirms Kelly Racing V8 Supercars entry". Speedcafe.com. 9 February 2012. Retrieved 20 June 2016.
  6. ^ "Moffat leads Nissan one-two at Winton". SpeedCafe. 24 August 2013. Retrieved 20 June 2016.
  7. ^ Bartholomaeus, Stefan (6 March 2016). "Percat wins chaotic rain hit Clipsal 500". Speedcafe. Retrieved 20 June 2016.
  8. ^ Bartholomaeus, Stefan (18 June 2016). "Caruso breaks win drought in Darwin opener". Speedcafe. Retrieved 20 June 2016.
  9. ^ "Kelly Racing confirms Caruso departure". 30 January 2019.

External links