V8 Supercars’ British international drivers have paid tribute to the late Dan Wheldon at the Gold Coast today.
Six drivers affiliated with the British Racing Driver’s Club unveiled special visor stickers in memory of Wheldon in pit lane at the Surfers Paradise street circuit.
The British Racing Drivers’ Club is, arguably, the most exclusive club in motor racing. With a membership that numbers only 850, it is home to the most successful racing drivers from Great Britain and the Commonwealth.
All BRDC members present at this weekend’s event will carry the special visor stripe stickers as a tribute to Wheldon. They are the UK’s Richard Westbrook (Jack Daniel’s Racing), Oliver Gavin (Pepsi Max Crew), Andy Priaulx (TeamVodafone), Marino Franchitti (Gulf Western Oils Racing), Richard Lyons (Ford Performance Racing) and Darren Turner (Toll HRT).
Other drivers who will represent the BRDC and its tribute Wheldon include Australians Ryan Briscoe (Toll HRT) and Alex Davison (IRWIN Racing), Italian Emanuele Pirro (SP Tools Racing) and Brazilian Gil de Ferran (Mother Energy Drinks Racing). Wheldon tragically passed away following an IndyCar accident in Las Vegas last weekend. He was scheduled to race alongside James Courtney in the #1 Toll Holden Racing Team Commodore at the Surfers Paradise street circuit this weekend.
Wheldon, a BRDC member, has been replaced at the Toll HRT by fellow BRDC member Turner.
“As soon as the gravity of the situation became apparent with what happened with Dan, every member out here (on the Gold Coast) from the British Racing Drivers’ Club wanted to do something to remember Dan,” said Gavin.
“So we had these visor stickers made up and every BRDC member is going to carry one on their helmet, which I think is a great tribute to Dan and also to remember that he was a member of the British Racing Drivers’ Club and a really high achiever.
“He was the winner of the Gold Star in 2006, which is the highest accolade you can win within our club.
“That year when he won he beat the likes of Jenson Button, Mark Webber and David Coulthard to that Gold Star. When you are beating guys like that you go ‘that’s pretty impressive’.
“It’s great that we could do something to remember him by, but it’s with heavy hearts that we are doing it.
“This weekend is going to be a lot about remembering Dan and I know that V8 Supercars is going to be doing something on Saturday to remember, but we wanted to do our own thing as well.
“It’s great that we managed to get all of the British drivers together to do a photo and remember him.”
See below for Speedcafe.com’s V8 Race Guide ahead of the Armor All Gold Coast 600 this weekend.