TeamVodafone will be hoping to score its first victory with an ‘alternate’ livery in Townsville this weekend, where team drivers Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes will race in Army colours.
The all-conquering V8 Supercars squad is racing in aid of the defence force charity GECKO, with its specially liveried panels set to be auctioned at the completion of the Sucrogen Townsville 400.
TeamVodafone also donned special looks for charity in 2008 (Red Dust at Hidden Valley) and 2009 (McGrath Foundation at Homebush), but came up short of victory on both occasions.
Whincup and Lowndes currently sit first and second in the championship respectively after 13 races, with the former confident of adding to his two previous Townsville race victories with his new look.
“I feel good and I believe I’m physically and mentally prepared,” said Whincup.
“Townsville is one the most physical races of the year so hopefully my (recently completed) Brissie to the Bay 100km slog will help put me in good stead.
“TeamVodafone went pink at the end of 2009 for the McGrath Foundation, we also had the ‘Red Dust’ livery in Darwin and we didn’t boast the best results, but this weekend is an opportunity to turn that around.
“I personally think the cars look amazing and quite intimidating so I’m looking forward to testing the livery out on the track.”
Lowndes and Whincup paired up to take out a promotional ‘tank race’ at the Townsville showgrounds this morning.
The V8 Supercars drivers completed a driver change during the four-lap event, and came out on top of Townsville local David French in the challenge.
While Lowndes has yet to finish better than ninth at the Reid Park Circuit, the three-time V8 Supercars champion says he’s enjoying doing his bit for GECKO this weekend.
“While we can’t do anything directly for our deployed soldiers we are able to ensure their families are receiving the support and care that they need,” said Lowndes.
“Townsville and North Queensland in general is an area where many of our service men and women and their families are based so we have chosen to run this limited edition camouflage livery in recognition of their dedication to protecting our country.
“This morning’s tank race was a lot of fun and we’re looking for a great weekend of results up here. Hopefully most of the panels we’re auctioning off will stay straight.”
Practice for the 2011 Sucrogen Townsville 400 kicks off Friday at 10:25am.
Coming to Townsville for the V8 Supercars? Make sure you secure your ticket to the official V8 after party at The Greenroom, sponsored by Speedcafe.com, Jack Daniel’s and Love My. CLICK HERE to buy your $10 ticket.
See below for a gallery of images showing the new livery and tank race
See below for footage of this morning’s tank racing action
See below for Speedcafe.com’s Townsville V8 Race Guide