SECOND EX-WORKS PEUGEOT FOR BATHURST WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29: Sydney-based New Zealand driver and team owner Tony Newman has entered a second ex-works Peugeot 406 in the feature 500km Super Touring race in the Bob Jane T-Marts Bathurst '99...
SECOND EX-WORKS PEUGEOT FOR BATHURST
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29: Sydney-based New Zealand driver and team owner Tony Newman has entered a second ex-works Peugeot 406 in the feature 500km Super Touring race in the Bob Jane T-Marts Bathurst '99 motor racing event on Sunday.
The 42-year-old businessman said Sydney's Anthony Robson had been recruited to drive his TC Motorsport team's second car in the 500km event at Bathurst. Newman will share the team's other British-built front-drive Peugeot 406 in the race with Canberra's Mark Zonneveld.
Robson, 30, finished third in the Independents Cup and eighth outright in this year's BOC Gases Australian Super Touring Championship driving a BMW 318i and a Honda Accord.
The Peugeot that Robson will drive at Bathurst was raced in the 1997 British Touring Car Championship by Englishman Patrick Watts. Newman purchased the works car the following year and drove it in the Australian championship. He later bought an identical 1997-specification Peugeot and that is the car he and Zonneveld will race at Bathurst.
Newman's cars arrived at Bathurst today, and the Christchurch-born racer believes his team can challenge for a top-three podium finish on the 6.2km Mount Panorama circuit.
"Bathurst is a horsepower track and I'm confident the Peugeot will be as quick as anything out there for straight-line speed," said Newman. "I guess you'd have to say the works Volvos and Paul Morris (NEMO Racing BMW 320) are favourites, but I think we're capable of being on the podium if we're running at the end. I'm delighted to have Anthony (Robson) in our team. He's coming off a strong championship season and this is a chance for him to show what he can do in a newer car."
Robson said the opportunity to race the Peugeot was a major step forward in his career. He will drive the car for the first time in the opening Super Touring practice session on Friday.
"The car should be better than anything I've raced before," said Robson. "Hopefully I can repay Tony (Newman) for the confidence he's shown in me with a good result."
MORRIS TO BE SPONSORED BY BMW CLUBS
This year's BOC Gases Australian Super Touring Championship winner Paul Morris has secured sponsorship backing for the Bob Jane T-Marts Bathurst '99 meeting from BMW Clubs Australia.
Club members will assist Morris' pit crew at Bathurst and long-term fund-raising plans are being put in place for his assault on the Australian championship in 2000. BMW Clubs Australia has 2,700 members and is affiliated with the International Council of BMW Clubs.
Morris said at Bathurst his ex-works NEMO Racing 320i would feature BMW Clubs of Australia signage. BMW Clubs Australia spokesman Glen Todd said the sponsorship package, which also includes track signage at Bathurst, was unique because few motoring clubs had a direct involvement with a race team.
"The attraction for BMW Clubs is they have the chance to see, touch, smell, and get the taste of a top race team which is normally the privilege of a few," said Todd. "The positive response so far from club members shows the tremendous loyalty behind the marque where members are prepared to support both financially and with their time to keep Paul Morris' BMW competitive in this year's Bathurst race and in next year's Super Touring series."
BMW Clubs Australia is also supplying a range of BMW cars at Bathurst for a parade lap of past champions at Mount Panorama.
Morris has won the Australian Super Touring Championship in BMWs three times, and has a record 33 race wins and 19 pole positions as fastest qualifier.
NOTE: The Seven Network's telecast of the Bob Jane T-Marts Bathurst '99 meeting will be from 3pm to 5pm on Saturday, and 8am to 6pm on Sunday.