The Aussie Driver Search has been placed into voluntary liquidation according to a statement issued by its founder Kyle Austin.
It will mean a winding up of the program, and also the end of Matt Powers’ foray in Super3 and planned Super2 efforts for 2020.
“It is with great sadness that I have made the decision to place Aussie Driver Search into voluntary liquidation,” Austin’s statement said.
“I want to ensure that everyone understands that I did not want this to happen and have done the absolute best I could to avoid this situation.
“My priority during this difficult process has been to minimise the impact on as many people as possible and I sincerely apologise to anyone affected.
“Our competitors will be most impacted as they have paid money for events which will now not be fulfilled,” he added.
“I apologise to each and everyone of these people and understand the magnitude of this.
“We have sent an email to all competitors outlining the steps they should take to try and recover their money.
“I am also very upset that I am no longer able to fulfil the remaining prizes for our winners and am deeply sorry to them.”
Austin adds that while staff have been paid in full, the program’s collapse will likely leave him bankrupt.
“All of our wages are up to date and our permanent staff will be receiving any owed annual leave, redundancy and any other entitlements.
“Our event crew are also fully paid with nothing owed. The majority of our accounts with any other businesses are also fully paid and the liquidators will sell off all of our assets and distribute any remaining funds as appropriate.
“I want to also make it very clear that I did not make this decision for personal gain and have come away with nothing.
“I am a personal guarantor on all our loans and leases and it is likely that I will have to become bankrupt due to this.”
Austin founded the program which offered an array of competitions with a sliding scale of prizes from (originally) a fully funded Super2 campaign to Australian GT outings, and racing budgets for other categories.
Other winners include Jaie Robson, who won the 2016 Pro competition and competed in the Australian GT Championship at the start of 2018, winning a race and leading the championship after the opening round.
The program purchased an Audi R8 LMS, which Robson raced and has since used in the competition component of the program.
That, along with Aussie Driver Search’s other assets, including an FG Falcon Supercar, will now be sold off by liquidators to settle outstanding debts.