KELLY BROTHERS FLY FLAG FOR MILDURA TOURISM AT SANDOWN
Born and bred Mildura boys Todd and Rick Kelly will fly the flag for their hometown's tourism industry at the Norton 360 Sandown Challenge at Sandown Raceway this weekend.
The Jack Daniel's Racing drivers are partnering with Mildura Tourism to encourage fans to visit the region, with Todd Kelly's #7 Jack Daniel's Commodore carrying VisitMildura.com.au signage across its windscreen banner at Sandown this weekend.
This is not a first for Todd Kelly, the 2005 Bathurst 1000 winner, having carried Mildura Tourism signage on his Holden Young Lions Commodore way back in his first season of V8 Supercars competition in 1999.
Both Kelly brothers return to Mildura regularly throughout the year, particularly to unwind either by water skiing or wakeboarding on the River Murray, or pushing the limits of their dirt bikes on the family farm.
Todd Kelly was happy to give something back to his local community and spread the Mildura Tourism message through he and brother Rick's racing activities.
"Mildura is obviously one of our favourite parts of the world so we're very happy to be spreading the tourism message for our hometown," said Todd Kelly.
"Between events we try our very best to get back up there, whether it is to do some ski racing on the River Murray or just to relax on the farm and see family and friends.
"Mildura and the surrounding areas are a beautiful part of Australia and will always be a big part of our lives. It's a great place for us to relax and have some fun.
"We're really grateful for all the support we have received from the Mildura region, right from the start of our careers. For us it all began at the Mildura go kart track when we were kids.
"Rick and I wouldn't be professional racing drivers and wouldn't have our own V8 Supercar team if it wasn't for the help of the people and businesses of Mildura.
"Lots of people, from the local media right through to businesses and local officials, all helped the early part of our careers when we started out in Formula Ford and then the Holden Young Lions program, so we're very pleased to have this connection with the region."
Mildura Tourism CEO Rod Trowbridge acknowledged the huge benefits that could flow from this partnership.
"Mildura Tourism is thrilled to be promoted in this way and it is an exciting prospect for the whole region," said Trowbridge.
"It will provide plum exposure, both at the race as well as via the massive audience of motoring fans who tune into TV broadcast of the V8 Supercars series.
"In motor racing, the Kelly name is synonymous with Mildura. We've now got a very engaging opportunity to draw consumers closer to the Mildura brand and to the visitor appeal of our entire region."
JACK DANIEL'S RACING QUOTEBOARD:
RICK KELLY - #15 Jack Daniel's Holden Commodore
"Coming from Tassie, where the results were not what we wanted, we are keen to turn it all around at Sandown," said Rick Kelly.
"Next year needs to be a year of solid improvement for us as a team so that gives us these last two events to gear up for 2011 and get towards the front.
"The whole team is pretty keen on doing well at both Sandown and then in Sydney and we have a lot going on in terms of getting all of our cars faster. We are all putting in a huge amount of effort towards doing a better job as a team.
"If you combine the pace we had a Sandown last year and throw in the unknown element that the soft tyre can bring, there is the potential for a top result at Sandown if we are on top of our game.
"We've just got to keep improving all aspects of our cars, our driving and our team so that we can take a big step forward for next season, starting with these last two events of this year."
TODD KELLY - #7 Jack Daniel's Holden Commodore
"We're lucky that we are in reasonably good shape coming out of Symmons with not too much damage to the cars, because back-to-back races can be tough on the crews," said Todd Kelly.
"We're really looking forward to the last few events here at Sandown and then the big finale in Sydney.
"What we started to develop out of the car on the Gold Coast was very promising. At Symmons we tried a few things and the new developments and direction we have with our cars really did help us.
"So we are going to try very hard over these last two events to make as much progress as possible with our Jack Daniel's Commodores and see where that puts us.
"It's important for us to have a strong end to the season to get some momentum for 2011."
- Kelly brothers boast huge success at Sandown
- Todd Kelly is a three-time event winner at Sandown, with two victories in the Sandown 500 endurance event as well as an overall round victory in the season finale here in 2001
- Rick Kelly has never won the Sandown event but has three podium finishes, one shy of Todd's four Sandown podiums. Rick was the runner-up in the Sandown 500 in both 2006 and 2007
-source: kelly racing