Q&A: The future of Triple Eight Race Engineering
Wednesday 3rd February, 2021 - 6:00am
The following question-and-answer piece was provided by Triple Eight Race Engineering as part of the announcement of its shake-up of ownership, management, and driving roster.
Triple Eight welcomes Tony Quinn as major shareholder
- Triple Eight welcomes Tony Quinn, who has purchased a 40% stake in the team.
- Roland Dane will step back from his roles as managing director and team principal at the end of 2021.
- Jamie Whincup will retire from full-time driving at the end of the 2021 Supercars Championship season and become Triple Eight managing director and team principal from 2022.
Q: Why has Tony bought shares in Triple Eight?
A: Tony is lifelong motorsport fan and has been involved in racing as a competitor, sponsor, circuit owner and category owner in multiple disciplines around the world. He had been evaluating the Supercars landscape and sees the championship going from strength to strength, particularly with the introduction of Gen3. As the most successful team in the sport’s history, Triple Eight is the most desirable company to be a part of.
Q: Will Tony have a day-to-day involvement with the Team?
A: Tony will not have a full-time role in running Triple Eight, but he brings a wealth of business knowledge and experience to the Board, which will only serve to benefit the Team.
Q: Does Tony buying into Triple Eight mean his companies will be sponsoring the cars?
A: Tony’s investment in Triple Eight is completely separate to sponsorship and there are no plans in place for his other companies to have involvement with the team.
Q: When did the deal happen and what was the timeline?
A: The conversations and negotiations between Tony and Triple Eight happened relatively quickly and very smoothly, as they do when the stakeholders are passionate and motivated to continue winning. While the larger plan has always been for Jamie to take over from Roland, Tony’s investment has more been a case of the right interests aligning at the right time.
Q: If Jamie is the MD and TP, why is he not the major shareholder?
A: The shareholdings have been structured to give the best possible opportunity for a smooth transition and to further future-proof the business.
Q: Is Roland still a shareholder?
A: Yes, he retains an 11% shareholding.
Q: Are Paul Dumbrell and Tim Miles still shareholders?
A: No, Paul and Tim have sold their shares to Tony but will retain an alternate position on the Triple Eight board of directors between them. Paul and Tim recognised that having a significant shareholder of Tony’s business acumen and investment in motorsport will give Jamie a much better platform to grow into the MD and TP roles.
Q: Why is Jamie retiring?
A: As the most winning touring car driver in Australian history, Jamie has had a very successful career and it is important to him to finish on a high while he is still delivering strong results. With exciting new challenges ahead, the transition to MD and TP is the natural next step in his career.
Q: Will Jamie ever drive a Supercar again?
A: Jamie will evaluate co-driving in 2022 with Red Bull Ampol Racing.
A: We don’t know yet. Triple Eight will assess the driver market and our options over the coming months. We do not have a timeline in place for the decision. We have two young and talented Super2 drivers this year in Angelo Mouzouris and Broc Feeney, but there are other young drivers out there and we’re looking at all options for 2022.
Q: Why is Roland stepping down as MD and TP?
A: Roland is nearing retirement age and has been laying the foundations of a transition away from leading Triple Eight for a few years and the various pieces of the puzzle have come together to make this the right time.
Q: What will Roland do next year and beyond?
A: Roland will remain involved with Triple Eight through his part-time role as an advisor and Chairman of the Board, but is looking forward to enjoying other forms of racing in different capacities and spending more time overseas (pending COVID-19 travel restrictions!).
Q: Why is Jamie taking over as MD and TP?
A: Having joined the Team 15 years ago, Jamie has proved himself to be an integral part of Triple Eight. He has always said that after retiring from driving, he wants to stay involved in motorsport and he is greatly looking forward to challenging himself with these new roles. His work on the Supercars Commission over the last 15 months has been invaluable to his preparation for his future roles.