TODD KELLY TO PLACE GREATER EMPHASIS ON DRIVING DUTIES IN KELLY RACING RESTRUCTURE

#7 Jack Daniel's Racing: Todd Kelly
#7 Jack Daniel's Racing: Todd Kelly

Photo by: Chris Von Wieldt

Kelly Racing has today announced a restructure of its senior management with the aim of further improving the team’s performance on and off the race track.

Team co-owners Todd and Rick Kelly and Chairman John Crennan have conducted an extensive review of the business over recent months, with several key decisions made primarily to improve the balance associated with Todd and Rick’s multiple functions within the race team.

Todd Kelly has reaffirmed his commitment to driving in the V8 Supercars Championship until the end of the 2013 season at the very least.

As a result, Todd Kelly will take several steps back from his day-to-day business duties as Racing Director of Kelly Racing to focus more on his role as driver of the team’s #7 Jack Daniel’s Commodore.

Crennan will assume a much broader management role in all aspects of the team and takes on the Chief Executive position effective immediately.

Crennan joined Kelly Racing as its inaugural Chairman of the Management Team in July last year and was previously the founding Managing Director of both Holden Special Vehicles and Holden Racing Team for over two decades.

The review and subsequent restructure also identified that Rick Kelly’s position as Commercial Director has not been the ideal situation for him to concentrate on his role as driver of the team’s #15 Jack Daniel’s Commodore.

Nick Ryan, formerly Commercial Manager, is promoted to General Manager – Marketing and Sponsorship with a broader range of responsibilities effective immediately, to allow Rick Kelly to concentrate more on his racing, where he currently sits fourth in the 2011 V8 Supercars Championship standings.

One role that Todd Kelly will retain is his position as Alternate Member of the newly established V8 Supercars Commission, which focuses on racing rules, regulations and formats.

KELLY RACING QUOTEBOARD

TODD KELLY - #7 Jack Daniel’s Holden Commodore:

"Given we are two and half years into the formation of Kelly Racing and the endless 24/7 job we have put in to get the team to this point, it was time to take a step back and ask myself the question ‘have I got the right balance?’,” said Todd Kelly.

“Within this review I stated my clear preference was to get much more focus back onto driving.

“I am over the moon that we all agreed on a range of structural changes that will allow me to organise my life primarily around being a full-time driver.

“The sport is now so professional I realise I can no longer put myself at a disadvantage to my fellow drivers because of all my management duties.

"Therefore, we are introducing a number of changes in the team to make my revitalised driver focus a reality.

“In addition many of our technical and engineering managers and staff take on broader responsibilities as part of spreading the workload previously undertaken by myself.

“These guys are now at a stage of their development and understanding of our team that they will grow and benefit from these changes.

“This restructure is not designed purely to allow just me to focus more on my driving role.

“Rick has also been under the pump with so many of his commercial and marketing tasks and the absurd hours he has also been working in the business.

“His commitment to the Shannons Supercar Showdown TV series alone was massive, so the strengthening of our Marketing and Commercial Operations should free Rick up more and allow him to push hard for top three championship contention.

“I don’t expect to get back into top form overnight, and I don’t want people to think this is a switch you press and it just happens. But I look forward to gradually rebuilding my confidence and focus in a sensible and measured manner through the balance of this season and get back to my best for the 2012 season.”

RICK KELLY - #15 Jack Daniel’s Holden Commodore:

“As a young team we are continually looking at ways to improve the performance and structure of our business,” said Rick Kelly.

“This review and restructure is another example of how we are determined to constantly look inwards to analyse Kelly Racing as a whole and put in place systems that improve what we do.

“If we had to do the past 30 months all over again we would change very little but now that we are in our third year it's important we draw a line in the sand and we structure our business more in the conventional team manner and that means making sure the other drivers in the championship are not getting any advantage over us in their preparation leading up to a race weekend.

“I am really stoked about the attitude of all the management and staff with this change and they are all very keen to embrace these changes to ensure our role as drivers is not compromised.

“I’m really keen to see Todd get back on top of things as well. He had a great lead-up to Abu Dhabi and that showed because at that event he was clearly the best of our four drivers.

“He also reminded everyone in New Zealand that he can do the job and I think that it’s a good move for us as a team to make changes to allow him the opportunity to spend more time focusing on his role as a driver.”

#15 Jack Daniel's Racing: Rick Kelly
#15 Jack Daniel's Racing: Rick Kelly

Photo by: Chris Von Wieldt

JOHN CRENNAN - Kelly Racing CEO:

“I continue to have a strongly held belief that Todd and Rick are the future of this sport and their team will emerge as the next ‘super power’ in V8 Supercars, such are their capabilities and commitment to all facets of the business,” said John Crennan.

“A tour of Kelly Racing will demonstrate how their facilities alone here at Braeside are world class.

“We have prepared a strong business plan for the next three years and these structural changes are just stage one of this plan.

“If these staff moves, and others that we will introduce, lighten the ownership and management load for Todd and Rick by even 33 percent, then this restructure will have been successful.”

MARSHALL FARRER - Managing Director, Brown-Forman Australia & New Zealand (owner of the Jack Daniel’s brand):

“This is a logical and timely evolution for Kelly Racing, which will enable the Jack Daniel’s Racing team to be even more competitive under strengthened team leadership with greater focus on the race track. It’s a win-win,” said Marshall Farrer.

“We support Todd’s decision to dedicate more focus on driving our #7 Jack Daniel’s Commodore, which will only further build our strong, long-term relationship with the Kelly family, John Crennan, Nick Ryan and the entire team.

“Even Jack Daniel himself, had trouble finding enough time to both make his great whiskey and sell it to his enthusiastic customers. These moves will benefit both Kelly Racing and Jack Daniel’s Racing for years to come.

“2011 has been an exciting year for Jack Daniel’s Racing so far, with a double podium and front row start for both Todd and Rick in New Zealand and two thrilling race wins so far for Rick.

“The second half of the season is set to be exciting for Jack Daniel’s Racing as Rick challenges to improve on his current fourth place standing in the championship and Todd begins his resurgence.