AUS V8 Utes: Series news 2010-02-10

"Conkers" and Bates for V8 Ute Clipsal Celebration Formula Ford/GTP/Bathurst 24HR winner and V8 Supercar driver Cameron McConville is the latest signing for Yokohama V8 Ute "10 Years of Legends" event at the Clipsal 500 next month. Celebrating...

"Conkers" and Bates for V8 Ute Clipsal Celebration

Formula Ford/GTP/Bathurst 24HR winner and V8 Supercar driver Cameron McConville is the latest signing for Yokohama V8 Ute "10 Years of Legends" event at the Clipsal 500 next month.

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the series which launched at the Adelaide event in 2001, the 2 driver format will see series drivers paired with co-drivers in a 2 driver race format for the weekend, with the final race to be televised live featuring a driver change.

McConville will be partnered with local stunt driver Gary "Chuckie" Baxter in the Sage Automation / NHP SS Holden V8 Ute and as with all V8 Ute drivers, Cameron will have to adopt a nickname for the weekend and "Conkers" is keen to sink his teeth into the new challenge.

"I know enough about Gary Baxter through his advanced driving and commentating his racing in the Utes to know that we'll be extremely competitive. The Sage Team is very professional and I'm sure we'll have a great weekend," said McConville. "He won the Adelaide round last year, so it is one of the prized seats in the field." Baxter is also keen to have McConville on board.

"I'm thrilled we can now announce that Cameron has joined us for the series kick off," says a delighted Baxter, "The experience and versatility he brings to our operation is enormous. His experiences in open wheel competition (including a one off test drive in a Honda F1 car), Super Tourers and of course his success in V8 Supercars is well documented."

McConville at age fifteen was the youngest ever driver to hold a CAMS license, became a works driver for the Van Diemen team and won the Australian Formula Ford title and "Driver to Europe Series" in 1992, beat Jim Richards to the 1996 GTP title in the Warwick Fabrics Porsche, drove for Brad Jones Racing to a 3rd outright in the 1997 Australian Super Touring Championship, finished second at Bathurst with Craig Lowndes for the Holden Racing Team in 1999, won the 2002 Bathurst 24 Hour race for Gary Rogers Motorsport in a Holden Monaro, and had first V8 Supercar race win at Winton in 2004.

Rally legend Rick Bates will also join the line-up of the "Ten Years of Legends Race", which will co-incide with Round 1 of the 2010 Yokohama V8 Ute Racing Series -- protected by Armor All at the Clipsal 500 Adelaide, 11 -- 14 March.

Bates who has also dabbled in V8 Supercars and Australian Production Championships will be a great asset to the Jesus All About Life Racing Ford BF of Andrew "Fishtail" Fisher.

Fisher who came fifth in the 2009 V8 Ute Series and has also himself spent some time in Supercars is looking forward to the experience Bates can bring to the table.

The Canberra based rally ace's resume also boasts wins in the Panama to Alaska Marathon Rally, Australia Formula 2 Rally Championship, Classic Adelaide Rally, plus a trio of class wins in the Bathurst 12 Hour races in the early 90's. He is currently the lead stunt driver for Toyota's Hilux Heroes.

Other "Legends" confirmed for the feature event include:

Stephen Bradbury -- Olympic Gold Medallist Legend

Robbie Maddison - Stunt Riding Legend

Steve Owen -- Fujitsu Series and V8 Supercar Legend

Andrew Miedecke -- Touring Car and Open Wheeler Legend

James Brock -- Son of a Legend/Team Brock won the V8 Ute Series in 2004 with Damien White.

Leanne Tander - First female to win a round of the Australian Formula Ford Championship, NSW and Vic State Improved Production Champion, Many State and Australian Karting Titles and twice runner up in the Australian Drivers Championship.

Paul Morris -- Super Tourer and V8 Supercar Legend

Chris Pither -- NZ HQ Champion and currently leading New Zealand V8 Ute Series

Matt Lockwood -- Reigning New Zealand V8 Ute Champion.

The "Ten Years of Legends Race", is a two driver format and a celebration of the V8 Utes tenth year. Each driver will have 1 practice, 1 qualifying and 1 race with the final race a two driver format with mid race driver change.

The Race will be televised in a 1 hour live package on Network Seven, Sunday, 14 March.

The V8 Utes had their inaugural race at the Clipsal 500 in 2001 and have competed at the Adelaide street race every year since.

-source: v8 utes

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series V8S
Drivers Cameron McConville , Jim Richards , Brad Jones , Craig Lowndes , Paul Morris , Steve Owen , Rick Bates , James Brock , Chris Pither , Damien White , Leanne Tander , Andrew Miedecke
Teams Brad Jones Racing , Holden Racing Team