The Ford Supercars motor ace calls it a day
Motech Race Engines guru Steve Amos will officially retire from the supercar scene at the end of the month to focus on his health.
Amos has a long history in Supercars, bursting onto the scene as the man who built the engine that propelled Craig Lowndes to stardom at the 1994 Bathurst 1000.
After a stint out of the sport as his attention turned to fatherhood, the 52-year-old finally landed at Dick Johnson Racing in 2005. That association would never end.
Amos has had the ups and downs of DJR, from the joys of four Drivers’ Championships to uncertainty about the future of the organization at times.
Mostech will leave a legacy in the Gen3 era, having developed the 5.4-litre Coyote engines that all Ford teams will use from next season.
“I guess we’re just at a point where the industry has gone so far, the sport has gone so far, there’s such a technical element. Because of my health, it’s just not that easy to swing the next day all the time as before,” Amos told Speedcafe.com.
“The days of working 20 hours, brushing your teeth, having a coffee and going back to work, it doesn’t work anymore. It’s been hard work in that regard, but I think the time has come.
“Coincidentally, this is my 17th year at DJ’s; it must be there for a reason.
Some may not be familiar with Amos’ health battles. He suffered a cerebral hemorrhage in 2014 which put him on a long road to recovery. Then came a stroke in late 2019.
Both have been attributed to stress, the former being following the splitting of his business partnership with Roger Higgins, and the latter following the engine controversy that deprived Scott McLaughlin of pole position in the Bathurst 1000.
Amos hasn’t worked full-time since the latter, but has nonetheless been the mastermind of several crucial projects, along with his senior collaborator Bobby Ervin.
Born in the Blue Mountains and raised in Albury, Amos relished the support of his three sons.
The eldest child, Jacob, 26, took on the role of Managing Director at Mostech to cope with the increased workload brought by Gen3. Issac, 22, also works for the company, while Eliah, 17, is still in school.
Shell V-Power Racing Team President and CEO Ryan Story praised Amos’ contribution to the team and the industry at large.
“Steve Amos’ impact on Dick Johnson Racing and our time as Dick Johnson Racing Team Penske cannot be underestimated, nor his impact on Gen3, and that is truly his legacy,” Story told Speedcafe. .com.
“He has been an exceptional and loyal member of the family here at DJR for 17 years so it has been very sad and difficult for all of us to watch him struggle with his health issues over the years and we have done everything we can. could to support him along the way.
“But the timing is right for him in particular, and it’s the right thing to do for him. We’re supporting him through this process and doing everything we can, no different than we’ve had since it ran into trouble in 2014.
“He’s a remarkable man, he’s got a great family, he’s someone who would do anything for you and we really hope that also allows him to continue his recovery and he will definitely remain a part of the team and family as it goes. cheeky.”
Amos, whose last official business day is January 31, was keen to acknowledge charities Beyond Blue and the Stroke Foundation, and pledged to keep up with Supercars from a little further afield.
“I made a joke and said I was going to buy myself a fishing rod and see if I could do it, but I’m sure one weekend a month I’ll be glued to the TV “, he laughed.
“The passion is still there, the body is not there. I would continue but I am not up to it.
Ford power brokers Mark Rushbrook and Andrew Birkic also paid tribute to Amos.
“As the homologation team, we work closely with DJR to make sure we’re building the best Ford race cars possible,” said Rushbrook, global director of Ford Performance Motorsports.
“I have personally worked closely with Steve for several years, and he is one of the most experienced, knowledgeable and passionate people we have had the pleasure of dealing with.
“Steve’s work in the engine department has been an important part of our success, and we wish him all the best for the future as he focuses on his health.”
Added Birkic, President and CEO of Ford Australia and New Zealand: “Our relationship with DJR is something we are very proud of, now for over 40 years.
“Steve Amos has been there for much of that time, and his work has been instrumental in the team’s success.
“Everyone at Ford wishes Steve all the best as he heads into the next stage of his life. Thank you Steve for all you have done for the Blue Oval over many years.