Rookie driver Aaren Russell has parted ways with Erebus Motorsport with immediate effect following a contractual dispute between the team and his main sponsor, Plus Fitness.
“Plus Fitness Racing has decided to withdraw its sponsorship with AR Racing and car #4 from the 2016 Supercar Championship due to ongoing contractual disputes between AR Racing and Erebus Motorsports,” read a statement from the company.
The Betty Klimenko-owned team has been running the Newcastle-born driver under its second Racing Entitlements Contract in a deal that saw Russell bringing Plus Fitness and his ex-Walkinshaw Racing chassis to the table.
Russell currently sits in 26th and last place in the Drivers’ Championship standings among the field’s full-time drivers with a best finish of 17th at Symmons Plains.
The dispute is reported to have triggered in connection to outstanding payments for the preparation of the car, as well as a sponsorship activation that Plus Fitness undertook during the previous Townsville 400 championship round.
It is understood that the team’s deal with Russell will allow it to continue to use his chassis for the remainder of the season even if it terminated their contract.
The team will be required to run the entry at this weekend’s Coates Hire Ipswich SuperSprint championship round, and is currently sourcing a replacement driver and sponsors.
Erebus Motorsport is yet to formally comment on the split and its plans to replace Russell for the remainder of the season.
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