A New Zealand-based team could be on next year’s V8 Supercar Championship grid, according to the latest speculation emerging from the Pukekohe Raceway paddock during last weekend’s ITM 500 event.
As the category continues to work on ways of increasing the overall grid size, a consortium dubbed ‘Super Black Racing’ attended last weekend’s championship round to scout out possible opportunities. The group has been fronted by former touring car racer Paul Radisich.
Interest from across the Tasman remains strong, with the grid’s three New Zealand drivers – Scott McLaughlin, Shane van Gisbergen and Fabian Coulthard – all enjoying strong performances to-date. A crowd of over 130,000 spectators flocked to Pukekohe Raceway over the four-day championship round.
The last New Zealand team to compete in the championship was Team Kiwi Racing, which ran from 2000 to 2009 until it was forced into bankruptcy.
The grid size was trimmed from 28 to 25 cars during the off-season, with three Racing Entitlements Contracts – those of Triple F Racing (Dean Fiore), Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport and Tony D’Alberto Racing – handed back to the series organisers after their owners were unable to secure the funding necessary to remain on the grid.
The fate of those three RECs remains unknown, although the championship is likely to put them to tender to be purchased by new or existing teams.
It is understood that Super Black Racing is one of a number of groups potentially interested in joining the championship, adding its name to interest already expressed by American outfit Penske Racing, which is expected to announce plans of its Australian expansion within the next two months.
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