The Tekno Autosports V8 Supercars team remains hopeful that a strong performance at this weekend’s Falken Tasmania Challenge championship round will help it secure major backing for the rest of the season.
Currently, the team’s two Holden Commodores driven by owner/driver Jonathon Webb and Michael Patrizi carry negligible sponsorship stickers and are run in a plain-white scheme, much to the chagrin of V8 Supercars Australia.
The team underwent a major restructure during the off-season, expanding to a two-car operation and switching from Ford to Holden power. But it was unable to land a major sponsorship deal in time for the season-opening Clipsal 500 Adelaide in early March.
Webb boosted the team’s sponsorship prospects with a career-best qualifying effort that saw him make the first race’s Top-10 Shootout for the first time in his career, but hopes of a better weekend went belly-up when he was rammed from behind by an unsighted Greg Murphy during Sunday’s qualifying session, which ruled him out of the Race 2 action.
The team did, however, run with Abu Dhabi signage at the non-championship support races during the Australian Grand Prix weekend, but this was an arrangement made by V8 Supercars Australia to promote its late-season event, the Yas 400, which has failed to attract even remotely acceptable crowd numbers.
But it again looks as though the all-white scheme will be on display at Symmons Plains, with the team continuing with its ‘no sponsor, no stickers’ policy. The team is being firm in its stance of running both cars with an identical livery scheme, which effectively knocks out prospective backers who can’t make the capital investment to secure naming rights deals on both cars.
“We’ll be running two white cars in Tasmanian, unless something comes off in the next two days,” the team’s commercial manager, Paul Robinson, is quoted as saying.
“We’ve got quite a bit on the go at the moment, but I’d like to think that this is the last time we’ll have plain cars.”
He confirmed that the team should have a permanent sponsor by the fourth round of the championship at Barbagallo Raceway in May, but that a one-off deal could be in place for the championship’s third round, the ITM 40 at Hamilton in New Zealand.
“There’s plenty of irons in the fire, but these things take time. Hopefully we have something concrete in the next couple of weeks,” Robinson added.