Stone Brothers Racing's naming right sponsors, SP Tools and IRWIN Industrial Tools have announced they will combine their sponsorship in an attempt to win the elusive Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.
The correlation between the tool companies will allow for SBR's main series drivers, Shane van Gisbergen and Alex Davison to pair up in a dual livery FG Falcon for the 2009 enduro season events.
Today's announcement also confirms the second SBR car run at Phillip Island and Bathurst will be an all Kiwi entry with John McIntyre and Daniel Gaunt partnering up driving the #4 car in an identical colour scheme.
Only once before has SBR combined their sponsors for the endurance races, when in 2003 Marcos Ambrose and Russell Ingall drove the same car under a dual livery.
“I feel like we have scored a great result even before we head to Phillip Island and Bathurst. If you look at our results at Bathurst in recent years we have been by far the best team that has run a car with a full-time and part-time driver pairing. We knew if we wanted to take the next step that the only way to go was to put our two main guys together. I was pleased that the same enthusiasm was shared by both our major sponsors,” said SBR team boss, Ross Stone.
“We have had to work away at making the combined livery happen, but without the commitment of all our corporate partners involved we would never have come close. The result is a very strong lead car with Alex [Davison] and Shane [van Gisbergen], and our second entry with John [McIntyre] and Daniel [Gaunt]; who I know will represent our team very well indeed.”
“It just made sense to put Shane and Alex together for the enduros,” added SP Tools managing director, Kevin Davis. “As much as combining liveries can be a challenge we are all really pleased with the end result.
“SP Tools have been involved with V8 Supercars for fifteen years now and it has always been a personal goal of mine to have a car with the SP Tools logo on it cross the line first at Bathurst. This year will be our best shot at it so far.”
Nick Pritchard, IRWIN Industrial Tools managing director, echoed those sentiments: “Putting Shane and Alex together made sense to everybody. We all knew that we had to put the main series drivers together if we truly wanted success during the endurance races and we all worked well together to achieve that outcome,” he continued.
“There was never any doubt that we'd do it – we just wanted to achieve a livery design that presented the cars well and we all agree that we've done that. The cars look good, the drivers are happy, the team's happy, and the sponsors are happy so it's good all round.”