Holden multi-year extension with HRT
- By Holden Motorsport
- Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
Holden is proud to announce a multi-year extension to its partnership agreement with the Holden Racing Team (HRT) in V8 Supercars.
The partnership extension, announced at the team's headquarters in Clayton, on Thursday, means that HRT will continue as Holden's official factory racing team.
The long-term relationship between Holden and its factory racing team, which will next year celebrate its 25th anniversary - makes it not only the longest in Australian motorsport, but also its most successful.
Since its foundation in 1990, the iconic racing team has secured six ATCC/V8SC drivers' championships, including a record five straight (1998-2002), seven Bathurst 1000 victories, and more than 200 all-time race wins - an Australian record.
HRT is also the only team to have won championship races in Australia, New Zealand, China, the UAE and the Kingdom of Bahrain.
The announcement comes on the back of further success for the team, at the last two V8 Supercar rounds in Townsville and Ipswich - where HRT's champion drivers Garth Tander and James Courtney, both on long-term contracts, scored respective wins in their Commodores.
GM Holden Motorsport and Sponsorship Manager Simon McNamara said that the extension was made ahead of a milestone year for the partnership.
"2015 marks the 25th anniversary of Holden and its official factory racing team," McNamara said.
"Motorsport is part of Holden's DNA, having raced its products in Australia and overseas with great success for more than 45 years.
"We're incredibly proud of the Holden Racing Team - and the success we've built together in this sport. We're certainly looking forward to working hard together over the next few years for more race wins and championships."
Holden Racing Team owner Ryan Walkinshaw said a new contract with Holden reflected the iconic partnership established by his late, great father Tom.
"My dad started the Holden Racing Team 24 years ago and our family is hugely passionate about HRT, so we are fortunate to have a new, multi-year contract with Holden," Walkinshaw said. "Our new deal gives us the opportunity as a team to celebrate our 25th anniversary with our loyal partners and fans, which is exciting.
"Our relationship with Holden extends further than just the race team, and Holden has been a great supporter of my father and our family.
"Hopefully we can repay Holden's faith with more race wins and championships."
HRT Managing Director Adrian Burgess paid testament to the strength of the partnership ahead of its milestone year.
"The Holden Racing team was established by Tom Walkinshaw in 1990, and the family is proud to continue its association into its 25th year and beyond," Burgess said.
"We've had many great successes over the years, including six drivers' and team championships and over 200 race wins.
"Garth and James have taken victories at the last two rounds in Townsville and Ipswich, which shows the strength of our collaboration with Holden.
"We can now knuckle down and concentrate on the all-important endurance races at Sandown, Bathurst and the Gold Coast."
HRT driver Garth Tander, who has spent his entire career racing a Commodore, said he wears the Holden lion and driver logo with pride.
"To be driving for the sport's iconic team, which has run a list of legendary race drivers over the years, like Peter Brock, Allan Grice and Mark Skaife, is still an incredible feeling for me," Tander said.
"Driving for HRT is an honour, and I look forward to adding more silverware to the HRT cabinet."
Tander's teammate, James Courtney, who won the 200km race at the last round in Ipswich, to add to his Clipsal 500 victory earlier this year, is fired-up for more success with the team.
"To win races in a red, factory HRT Commodore is the stuff that kids grow up dreaming about. I know I did," said Courtney, who began his career with HRT in 2005.
"The reality is exactly as you would expect, it's brilliant to be part of such a famous and successful race team.
"The boys have done a great job this year, putting in plenty of hours at our base, and the success is happening before our eyes. It'll be great to carry that through into next year's 25th anniversary."
HRT heads to Sydney Motorsport Park for the next event on August 23-24.