The Red Bull Holden Racing Team Commodores will take on the Bathurst 1000 bedecked in a special edition, retro-inspired livery, revealed today at the team’s pre-endurance test.
Drawing inspiration from Peter Brock and Colin Bond’s 1971 Sandown 250 and Bathurst 500 Holden Toranas, the striking red and white livery celebrates Holden’s 50th anniversary of factory involvement in motorsport.
GM Design Australia Exterior Manager, Peter Hughes created a design to capture Holden’s celebrated motorsport history and evoke a strong link to the past.
“We tried many variations, but the 1971 HDT livery ended up being the perfect inspiration because of its unique historical appearance,” he said.
“The horizontal heritage stripes over the roof, for example, are unmistakable and should make a statement over the top of the mountain, just as they did back in 1971.
“It’s a great way for everyone to celebrate a wonderful history of factory Holden Bathurst entries and the heroic drivers, both past and present, that race them,” Hughes said.
And the milestones keep coming as this year will also mark 10 years since Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes last drove together in an endurance race.
“Craig and I are obviously looking forward to racing together again and it’s a great that we will be doing it with such an iconic livery on our car,” Whincup said.
“Being the factory Holden team is something that Triple Eight is really proud of, so it’s pretty special to be marking their 50th anniversary in this way. Holden has had a lot of success at Mount Panorama and we’re very lucky to say we’ve played a small part in that. Lowndesy and I will certainly be trying to add to that next week.”
Having claimed a hat-trick between 2006-08, the pair are ready to battle it out for the top spot on the mountain.
“Jamie and I individually have a lot of experience at Bathurst, but we also have a great history racing together,” Lowndes said.
“To be teaming up with him again in the year that marks the 50th anniversary of Holden’s involvement in motorsport will be something we will remember for years to come.”
Having conquered the mountain for the seventh time last year, the spotlight will be on Lowndes as he attempts to edge closer to the great Peter Brock’s record of nine Bathurst wins.
“Preparation is always key at Bathurst,” Lowndes said.
“Mechanically, last year was tough in the build-up to the race with all the power steering issues. Come race day we had pace and a good strategy which meant we were able to be there in the end to fight for the win. You never know what’s going to happen at Bathurst!”
On the #97 side of the Red Bull Holden garage, Shane van Gisbergen will be trying to maximise the experience of his new co-driver, three-time Bathurst 1000 winner Garth Tander, as he hunts down his first win at the mountain in a supercar.
“Garth has settled into the team really well. He’s been coming to test days, ride days and spent quite a lot of time at the workshop, as well as doing plenty of racing in other cars, so we’re both looking forward to getting on track at Bathurst,” said the 2016 Supercars champion.
“It’s very cool to have a different livery on the cars for Bathurst. Hopefully the fans like it as much as we do, and we represent Holden well for their anniversary.”
For fans, the retro-themed team kit is available for pre-order online from midday Monday, September 30 and track side at the Red Bull Holden Racing Team merchandise shop during the Bathurst 1000, 10-13 October.
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