BEN COLLINS JOINS JACK DANIEL'S RACING FOR PHILLIP ISLAND AND BATHURST V8 ENDUROS English endurance racing specialist Ben Collins will make his V8 Supercar debut in the annual Phillip Island and Bathurst endurance events later ...
BEN COLLINS JOINS JACK DANIEL'S RACING FOR PHILLIP ISLAND AND BATHURST V8 ENDUROS
English endurance racing specialist Ben Collins will make his V8 Supercar debut in the annual Phillip Island and Bathurst endurance events later this year.
Collins will join Todd and Rick Kelly's Jack Daniel's Racing outfit, pairing up with Bathurst veteran Nathan Pretty in the team's #15 Jack Daniel's Racing Holden Commodore.
Collins, 34, is looking forward to the opportunity of adding the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 and L&H 500 at Phillip Island to his already extensive racing CV.
"I'm very excited about the opportunity to race in V8 Supercars with Jack Daniel's Racing," said Collins.
"Phillip Island and Bathurst are two circuits that every driver would love to get the chance to race on, especially Bathurst, which is such a famous race.
"I drove a Holden V8 Supercar earlier this year and these cars are sensational. They're very demanding and the level of talent and professionalism in this category is very high."
2005 Bathurst winner Todd Kelly said that adding Collins to Jack Daniel's Racing's endurance line-up was a coup for the first-year team.
"Ben comes to Jack Daniel's Racing with a wealth of experience," said Todd Kelly.
"Endurance races like Phillip Island and Bathurst require a combination of pace and consistency, especially when it comes to 161 laps at Mount Panorama.
"Ben has achieved a lot in endurance style racing and he will be a real asset to our team as we tackle our first endurance events.
"It's fitting that he's paired with Nathan because the two of them are both noted endurance specialists. It's great to have two guys with such pedigree in our #15 Jack Daniel's Commodore."
The Kelly brothers will form one of this year's strongest endurance combinations aboard the #7 Jack Daniel's Racing Holden Commodore, only the second time the pair have driven together in the V8 enduros.
"The endurance races have been a major focus for our team and Todd and I can't wait to team up again," said two-time Bathurst winner Rick Kelly.
"When we ran together in 2006 we finished second at both enduros, so we've definitely got some unfinished business this year.
"Our team is excited to welcome Ben into the fold for the endurance events and we're confident that he and Nathan constitute a very solid pairing."
Collins has an extensive and impressive racing history that includes experience from Formula Vauxhall to international Formula 3, Indy Lights, GTs and World Sportscars and NASCAR.
He was nominated for the prestigious BRDC Autosport Driver of the Year (1995), was third in the 2001 World Sportscar Championship driving for Ascari, was European NASCAR (ASCAR) Champion in 2003 winning six races, and completed Formula One testing for Ascari. Collins also tested for the American Red Bull NASCAR team.
In addition to his impressive racing credentials, Collins is also a leading stunt driver for film and television, most recently working as a double for Daniel Craig driving James Bond's Aston Martin in Quantum of Solace.
Collins has already familiarised himself with a V8 Supercar, testing a Holden Racing Team Commodore for British motor racing publication Autosport at Winton Motor Raceway earlier this year.