Russell Ingall has announced that the 2013 season will be his last as a full-time driver in the V8 Supercars Championship.
Next year will be the 47-year-old’s eighteenth season in the Australian tin-top championship. Ingall won the championship title in 2005 with Stone Brothers Racing, and has also finished as a series runner-up three times.
The Surcogen Townsville 400 in July will be his 266th championship start – eclipsing the record held by former champion John Bowe – which will ensure he retires as the most experienced driver in the championship’s history.
His 2013 season will be spent behind the wheel of a new ‘Car of the Future’ SuperCheap Auto Racing Holden Commodore, which will be run by the Walkinshaw Racing stable.
Next year’s new championship regulations – which also see the return of Nissan and the debut of AMG – will help level the playing field, after recent seasons that have been dominated by the factory-supported Triple 8 Engineering Holden and Ford Performance Racing teams.
“[It’s] a whole new ballgame for V8s and it will open up the competition – you won’t see the domination by just two teams like we’ve seen this year. Experience and a cool head will count for a lot and I’ve got both those on my side,” he said in today’s announcement.
“It’s fantastic to have been in V8s for so long, almost since its inception. More importantly, I’m very proud that I am still competitive. I can hold my head up high and say that if I wasn’t competitive, and I didn’t believe I could win races, I wouldn’t still be driving.”
‘The Enforcer’ finished a solid thirteenth overall in the 2012 Drivers’ Championship standings with a best race finish of fourth place at the Sydney Motorsport Park.