Kelly brothers heading to Hidden Valley Raceway
Jack Daniel's Racing Nissan Altima drivers Rick (in photo) and Todd Kelly are primed for a return to the Top End, with the duo out to repeat previous V8 Supercars successes at Hidden Valley Raceway.
The brothers have a total of five race wins to their credit on the 2.87km circuit, with Todd sitting on three victories, while Rick's most recent of his two triumphs came in 2011.
At the corresponding event last year, Rick registered the best finish for a Nissan to that point of the season, with a fifth place result in the opening encounter.
The Darwin event follows the team's first full test day of the year at Winton Raceway, with the session providing an opportunity to experiment with car setups, which the team hopes will be beneficial through Hidden Valley's 14 turns.
The weekend will run the standard V8 Supercars Super Sprint format, with a pair of 100km races on Saturday followed by a 200km race on Sunday.
RICK KELLY - #15 Jack Daniel's Nissan Altima:
"I love heading up to Darwin, there's a great atmosphere around town, I don't think there is a team member or driver in pit lane who doesn't enjoy the trip to the Top End," said Rick Kelly.
"The whole experience around the event, the whole saturation that V8 Supercars have throughout the city is second to none anywhere we travel in the country.
"We've had a fair break in between Perth and Darwin, which has been very good for the team; we managed to get in our first true test day of year, obviously we had the season opening test day at Sydney Motorsport Park, but it was our first day at Winton.
"It was a good chance to try a lot of things that we had been working on over the last few months.
"The race meetings have been pretty tight on practice track time this year, so it's been good to go to Winton and take a few big risks with setup and find some further direction in a few areas that have been important to us.
"It's a round that we enjoy, I managed to get into the top-ten shootout last year, which was good, and our aim is to get a solid result this time as well.
"We're looking to turn our championship around, we've had some tough days out there this year and a lot of bad luck, for us we want to head towards the pointy end."
TODD KELLY - #7 Jack Daniel's Nissan Altima:
"It's been a little while unfortunately since we've had a win in Darwin, but it's just one of those places that you really look forward to going to, especially at this time of the year when we are wearing five layers of clothes here in Melbourne!" Said Todd Kelly.
"You get up to Darwin and it's just a whole different world, the track has been good to us in the past and it's a place I enjoy driving around quite a lot.
"It will be interesting to see how we end up; whether the new aero package (for 2014) gives us a good enough gain to make us a bit more competitive, or whether the engine side of things is still a little bit of a hindrance on that long straight.
"We've probably got one of the slowest corners leading onto one of the longest straights we will see in a while in our series.
"It will really show us where we're at where our weaknesses are and where our strengths are.
"I can't wait to get there and try and get some of that success that we've had in the past at that event."
Jack Daniels Racing