50 YEARS OF INTERNATIONAL MOTORSPORT Auckland based race team International Motorsport are gearing up for what will be their 50th year of competition. Having competed in New Zealand across several classes over the years, International Motorsport...
50 YEARS OF INTERNATIONAL MOTORSPORT
Auckland based race team International Motorsport are gearing up for what will be their 50th year of competition. Having competed in New Zealand across several classes over the years, International Motorsport have most recently been concentrating their attention on the premiere Porsche GT3 Cup series, however this season sees the team extending their scope again with entries in the GT3 Cup Challenge, Production Racing Championship and the Suzuki Swift Sport Cup.
This season's driver line up brings a variety of skill and talent to the team. In the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge, heading the charge will be Jonny Reid hot off the back of the Auto GP World Championship, backed up closely by Ant Pedersen who has been competing in the Fujitsu V8 Supercars Australia Series. Joining them in 997 Cup Cars will be young-gun Mitch Cunningham and seasoned campaigner Andrew Bagnall. Simon Evans will again run his 996 Cup Car and aims to improve on his first season in the Porsche series from last year.
New to the Production Racing Championship is the International Motorsport prepared Audi S3, which is being piloted by Simon Sceats. Joining Sceats in the series but running as a separate class are James Kirkpatrick and brothers Dan and Richard Bagnall in BMW Mini's. Another new car to the International Motorsport team is Ryan Bailey's Suzuki Swift.
International Motorsport was initially established by Lyall Williamson in 1960, who worked actively with the late Denny Hulme until his untimely death at Bathurst in 1992. Working with some of the world's greatest drivers and top car brands throughout the 60's and 70's until today, International Motorsport has prepared cars and coordinated teams to race in Australia, New Zealand, Asia, South Africa and America.
Today, Lyall still oversees the management of the team although the day-to-day operation is in the hands of Lyall's son Nick, passing the reins onto the next generation. Looking back over the past 50 years, the team at International Motorsport can be proud of their proven history of racing and driver enhancement, establishing themselves firmly as New Zealand's largest and most successful professional race team.
For the season ahead, Motorsport New Zealand have an impressive calendar of races with a total of seven events running from this weekend through until the April 2011. The drivers start with a clean score-sheet at the opening round at Pukekohe, followed by the trip south to Ruapuna Park Raceway in Christchurch at the end of November. The New Year kicks off with two more South Island rounds in January at Teretonga Park in Invercargill and Timaru International Raceway, then the teams head back north to Manfield in Fielding in February, Taupo Motorsport Park in March and then onto the popular Street Race at Hamilton in April.