Sitting behind the wheel of a purring 500-horsepower beast, for a moment Lochie Dalton struggles to hold back a cheeky grin that arises from thoughts not pertaining to a potential motorsport career.
The Launceston 17-year-old gets the irony of reaching top speeds on the race track that his underage peers are not legally allowed to drive, let alone do so on the streets.
"It's awesome - it's every kid's dream to get behind the wheel of one of these things," Dalton says looking out onto the track of Symmons Plains from inside his trans-am car.
The dream became a reality since being invited to join the Shaw Motorsport's two-car Camaro team along side veteran driver Tim Shaw.
"It's pretty crazy, really. I am just pumped. I won't be able to sleep much," he says.
That prized driver's seat for the Toyota 86 racing series only came to fruition on the back of karting success.
Dalton was the inaugural Tasmanian to ever win the Australian championship in 2018, coming only months after the first from the state to also win a single round.
But the top achievements does not give the fresh-faced teenager carte blanche to rev up the engine, put the pedal to the metal and rip up the track before even attempting to pass his P-plates first.
Instead it's about soaking up every bit of wisdom from Shaw, a former Commodore Cup and an one-time future touring national champion that raced against some V8 greats at Bathurst in 1999.
"You can't just go out and stick your boot in," Dalton says, "otherwise you will just hurt yourself or damage a lot of this expensive gear."
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Having serious respect for the sport has not been lost on the long-serving Launceston Karting Club member.
Dalton realises there is no free ride out on the track and he must still earn the trust of the Shaw Motorsport team.
"It's all pretty exciting, but you have enormous amounts of pressure on you," he says.
"There are businesses behind you putting in a lot of money in, so when you are sitting there on the grid, you just have to push all the way and get the job done."
The Toyota 86 racing series is not about scooting around for fun in a competition that supports the Supercars.
It's different to the relative zipping around in the karts to hitting speeds in excess of 250km/h inside a trans-am.
Dalton accepts this is all a part of his learning curve and an investment into his future.
"It's a new stepping stone for where I want to head in racing, obviously, to have a career in it," Dalton says.
"I still have a lot to prove, but it's also to see of which category I will be running and which category will be my next thing.
"We'll look for other options after that and see how that all goes."
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