CHAMPCAR/CART: Team Australia/WPR Racing launch Australia race

TEAM AUSTRALIA /WPS RACING TAKE INDY CENTRE STAGE The Team Australia Champ Car team and WPS Racing V8 Supercar contingent created International motorsports history during a hugely successful and spectacular launch of the Lexmark Indy 300...

TEAM AUSTRALIA /WPS RACING TAKE INDY CENTRE STAGE

The Team Australia Champ Car team and WPS Racing V8 Supercar contingent created International motorsports history during a hugely successful and spectacular launch of the Lexmark Indy 300 carnival today.

Australian Champ Car competitor Marcus Marshall was joined by WPS Racing's David Besnard in a demonstration drive through the streets of Brisbane, 80 kilometres North of Queensland's Gold Coast where the event will be staged on October 20-23.

The drivers can now claim to the rare distinction of being the first to manoeuvre their respective vehicles around the streets of Queensland's capital city.

The pair were joined by regular WPS Racing V8 Supercar driver Craig Baird and Team Australia's Alex Tagliani, who flew in from Canada just an hour before the event. -- the pair providing commentary during the demonstration run.

A crowd of more than 50,000 consisting of Brisbane workers, shoppers and families lined the streets to catch a glimpse of today's action.

The crowd becoming a sea of green and gold as onlookers showed their support for the local champ car favourites, Team Australia.

That's a major plus for Marshall and his Canadian team mate, Alex Tagliani as they prepare to unleash the power of their methanol charged machines Down Under during the Indy carnival.

"What an amazing feeling, I knew coming to the Gold Coast in October was going to be huge but driving through my capital city was just sensational," said Marshall.

"The vibe was incredible and it's obvious the Queensland and Australian public are right behind Alex and I.

"It's going to be a great thing coming back for the Lexmark Indy 300 and representing my country.

"I'm sure there'll be a lot of Canadian visitors and expatriates that will also be flying the green and gold colours and we're hoping to put on a great show on the streets of Surfers Paradise."

Enthusiasm was also etched on the face of Besnard who claimed a seventh placing during a one-off Champ Car drive at last year's Indy.

"What a fantastic experience to be part of yet another history making event leading into the Lexmark Indy 300 carnival for the second year in a row," said Besnard.

"Last year I was fortunate to drive the Champ Car around the streets of the Gold Coast and this year to steer a V8 Supercar for the first time ever around the streets of Brisbane was a real buzz.

"Once again there was a swell of support from the lunchtime crowds as we officially revved things up towards Indy and it really is an exciting time of the year for Australian motorsport."

Team Australia co-owners Craig Gore and John Fish were on hand during the official proceedings and the duo made a special presentation of the first ever model of a Team Australia Champ Car to Queensland Premier Mr Peter Beattie.

The Team Australia/WPS Racing combination will again be on show in V8 Supercar form next weekend during the Betta Electrical Sandown 500.

Tagliani shapes up for his debut in the number one Australian touring car category teaming with Marshall, while Besnard and regular New Zealand team mate Craig Baird partner up for the first of two endurance assaults.

The Internationally renowned Super Cheap Auto Bathurst 1000 will then be the focal point and highlight for all drivers on October 6-9.

-www.wpsracing.com.au

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About this article
Series Supercars , IndyCar
Drivers Alex Tagliani , David Besnard , Marcus Marshall , Craig Baird