Frosty takes new Supercar for a spin

If you can't beat them, join them.

After 13 years spearheading Ford's Supercars battle with Holden, Mark Winterbottom has driven his first laps in the Commodore he'll race in this year's championship.

Winterbottom took his new car on a 10-lap shakedown at Queensland Raceway on Tuesday as he prepared for the next chapter of his career.

For so long a Ford driver, the 37-year-old will be with Irwin Racing next year in a Commodore, built by long-time rivals Triple Eight Race Engineering.

"It was good. It's a bit of a tease, to be honest," Winterbottom said.

"It's like getting a Christmas present they take it off you and give it back to you in a month.

"It's not like we haven't followed that car for years and years, so I know its strengths and weaknesses by racing those guys.

"The goal is to work out what we had that was good in the past, what they've got that's good and blend the two together. When you do that, it should be a great result."

Winterbottom joined factory-backed Ford Performance Racing in 2006, winning the 2013 Bathurst 1000 and 2015 championship with the team.

The loss of factory support and a lack of results in recent seasons led Winterbottom to make a change at the end of last year to a single-car team.

The veteran denies the move is a sign, however, that his career is slowing down.

"I'm not racing to retire. I'm racing to get results," he said.

"You don't need 80 people to win. You don't need flash facilities. You need a car that's fast with a group of guys that will work their backsides off for you.

"It's a tight group, 12-14 people with one goal. They're there for you - you're there for them."

Winterbottom's next hit-out in his new car will be a pre-season test in mid-February at Phillip Island before the opening event of the season from February 28 to March 3 in Adelaide.