AUS: Talent outside of racing

Business Leaders On Fast Track To Porsche Success The Australian Carrera Cup has its share of pacesetters and talent both on the track and in the corporate world. Few motor racing categories boast a driver line-up that features so many business...

Business Leaders On Fast Track To Porsche Success

The Australian Carrera Cup has its share of pacesetters and talent both on the track and in the corporate world. Few motor racing categories boast a driver line-up that features so many business success stories, as well as some of Australia's most decorated drivers and track stars of tomorrow.

"It is an appetite-whetting mix of drivers which has laid such a solid base for Carrera Cup to continue to grow, both in a racing and a business sense," said Australian Carrera Cup CEO Jamey Blaikie.

Browsing through the driver's list for the Carrera Cup is like reading the contents of a book entitled 'On The Fast Track To Success'. If this was to be a publication, perhaps this would be the preview:

It maybe exciting watching a large field of the latest Porsche GT3 911s scream around a motor racing track at speeds creeping up close to 300kph. But did you know that the people behind the wheels of these Porsche machines are some of the most successful in their professional field. Let's take a closer look at a few of them:

Peter Hill
The former champion skateboarder followed his passion and turned an idea into a multi-million dollar venture. Peter, with his brother Stephen, is Founder and Executive Director of Globe International - a multi-brand footwear, apparel and boardsports 'youth culture' company. Launched in 1984, the company today is comprised of Australasian, International and North American divisions.

Rodney Jane
Rodney is the CEO of Bob Jane Corporation based in Melbourne. Rodney heads up the Bob Jane T-Marts chain, Australia's leading independent tyre, wheel and battery retailer with a national network of 140 T-Marts.

Jim Richards
Jim is arguably Australia's most decorated Professional Driver. The seven-time Bathurst 1000 winner took out the inaugural Australian Carrera Cup championship in 2003. Jim is also a four-time Australian Touring Car champion, seven-time Targa Tasmania winner and three-time Nations Cup champion. Now the 56-year-old is in strong contention for the 2004 Carrera Cup title.

Roger Oakeshott
Dr Roger Oakeshott is an Orthopaedic Surgeon with SportsMed SA based in Adelaide. Roger has been a member with SportsMed SA since 1990, and is involved with AFL, SANFL, National and State Netball, Softball, Hockey and is on the Medical Advisory Committee to CAMS.

Tony Quinn
Tony is the Managing Director of VIP Petfoods, the number one producer of fresh chilled petfood in Australia. Based at a 7000m2 factory in South East Queensland, VIP Petfoods has a staff of 70 to supply petfood around Australia and its export market to Korea, Japan, USA and Israel. The king of petfood is also one of the most experienced Porsche drivers in the Carrera Cup, and has sponsorship interest in other motorsport categories including the V8 Supercars and Aussie Racing Cars.

Alex Davison
Alex is a Professional Driver, and at the tender age of 24, is regarded as one of the best and most experienced handlers of Porsche racing cars. Alex competed in the German Carrera Cup series from 2000 to 2003, and has embarked on his fifth season of Porsche racing, this time in his home country of Australia. He is currently leading the 2004 championship, and will be a leading name in Australian motorsport for many years to come.

Geoff Morgan
Geoff is an Owner and Operator of Morgan & Banks Investments based in Sydney. Geoff, with Andrew Banks, originally established the highly successful recruitment company Morgan and Banks Ltd in 1994, growing the company to become the dominant recruitment force in Australia and Asia with sales growing to over $700 million. Now they apply their business acumen to the many and varied investments of the company.

Dean Grant
Dean is Managing Director of Australian Hospitality Management which includes the Elephant & Wheelbarrow, European Bier Cafe, Bridie O'Reillys Irish Pub and the new Bended Elbow pub in Albury. Australian Hospitality Management employs 300 staff Australia-wide.

Chris Seidler
Chris is the Company Director of Seidler Investments, Seidler Homes, Seidler Enterprises and Seidler Development Corporation, based in Melbourne. One of Chris' current projects is developing a five-star eco tourism resort in the Yarra Valley.

Paul Pedersen
Paul is the Company Director of Lakesawn Lumber, a forestry products processing company in New Zealand.

Stephen Borness
Stephen is the Director of Logi Add, a business marketplace IT company. Logi Add has established itself as one of Australia's leading computer peripheral suppliers, based in Sydney.

Ash Samadi
Ash is a Propery Developer for Samadi Corporation specialising in the Development, Construction, Asset Management of various residential and commercial properties as well as Joint Ventures and Syndications.

David Thexton
David is Director of thexton.com.au -- a new on-line health and nutrition store. At 20 years of age, David purchased a bankrupt beverage company and transformed it into a $100 million enterprise in 2000/01. He later sold the company to Coca Cola. His new health and nutrition company has two warehouses and employs 250 staff.

Peter Fitzgerald
Peter is another highly decorated driver and team manager in Australian motorsport. Peter's list of motor racing victories is substantial including Australian Production Car championships, Porsche Cup titles, GTP titles and multi-hour endurance races. At 54, Peter is still a Carrera Cup front runner while also directing his business Fitzgerald Racing Services.

Andrew Bagnall
Andrew is the Managing Director of Gullivers Pacific, a retail and wholesale outbound tour operator with more than 40 owned outlets, more than 150 franchised shops, tour and ticketing operations, and investments in three large corporate travel agencies.

Dean Cook
Dean is a Director of Paragon Financial Group which specialises in financial strategies and structures; and, protection, growth and distribution of client's assets.

Marc Cini
Marc is a Director of Adamco Limited, a diverse property group providing quality office and showroom facilities in Melbourne

Ross Rutherford
Ross is the Company Director of Wholesale Cars Direct which specialises in importing and retailing prestige cars in New Zealand

Rick Armstrong
Rick is the Company Director of Rick Armstrong Motors, with an inventory of more than 500 late model cars and four wheel drives, based in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Many of these drivers will be heading to the Northern Territory for Round Three of the Australian Carrera Cup to be held at Hidden Valley Raceway near Darwin from May 21 to 23.

The Carrera Cup is the most successful 'one make' championship in the world with close-to-identical Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars built by Porsche' racing arm in Weissach, Germany set for racing in 2004. All cars have a top speed in excess of 300 kilometres per hour with a 400-horsepower, 6 cylinder Boxer engine which revs to 8000 RPM.

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About this article
Series Porsche
Drivers Andrew Bagnall , Jim Richards , Rodney Jane , Alex Davison , Bob Jane , David Thexton , Tony Quinn , Geoff Morgan , Peter Fitzgerald , Stephen Borness , Ash Samadi , Peter Hill , Marc Cini , Dean Grant