The engines are revving. It’s almost time for the lights to go out. Here at Hino, we have been counting down the days until the first race of the season, and now it’s finally here!
Last week we supported the announcement of the extension of Team 18, which also supports our position as the Official Light & Medium Duty Truck and Bus Sponsor of the Supercars Championship. A title which we have held since 2016.
The season is shaping up to be one of the most competitive yet, as it takes place in 14 venues across Australia and New Zealand. Interestingly, although the number of races has decreased from 2019’s championship, the overall race distance has increased. That’s thanks to tweaks in the format. Changes to the regulations are set to make the on-track action even more exciting, with significantly reduced downforce designed to make racing even harder and more unpredictable than ever.
Big confidence in Team 18
At Hino, we’re keeping a close eye on our partner, Team 18. This season, the team comprises of two cars, IRWIN Racing and DEWALT Racing, with Mark ‘Frosty’ Winterbottom in a fresh IRWIN Racing Triple Eight-built ZB Commodore engineered by Phil Keed. Mark is hoping to improve on a 13th overall from last year, with a highlight of an ARMOUR ALL pole at Symmons Plains, while building on the confidence of a new larger team, more support and a fresh Commodore.
“It’s been a busy off-season for Team 18, but we’re really confident heading into this year that we can perform better.”
“The Supercars Championship is such a tough category. Every year you have to improve or be left behind, so hopefully there is a good year coming up with the package we have put together.” said Mark Winterbottom.
Good Luck to Frosty and his #18 car!
Team 18 has expanded
New signing and winner of the British Formula Ford Championship, Scott Pye, has plenty of potential, while a recruitment drive and workshop renovation mean that everyone has high hopes for the upcoming season. Using the #20 on his orange and black DEWALT Triple Eight ZB Commodore, Scott is excited to be involved with the team and has huge hopes and making a great run.
“We have some pretty exciting times ahead and I’m super excited to be in this car this year with a proper package and working with a team that’s really motivated and extremely talented” said Scott Pye.
Charlie Schwerkolt - Team 18 owner- is excited to be growing his team:
“Scott Pye is a fantastic addition to Team 18, he’s going to make a great teammate to Frosty.”
We’re looking forward to seeing each car compete this year and there is some great confidence in the team’s ability, with Charlie Schwerkolt summing it up nicely - “I believe we’ve got the right equipment with the Triple Eight cars, the Triple Eight package overall and great partnerships, plus two great drivers.”
2020 kicks off
The first race weekend on 20-23 February at the Superloop Adelaide 500 is sure to be a cracker, with plenty of new faces and team reshuffles to get our heads around. Defending champion, Scott Mclaughlin, will be hoping for a repeat of last year, while Ford will be aiming to match their success in the constructor’s championship.
The championship moves from Adelaide to Melbourne on 13-15 March, before heading across to Tasmania on 4-5 April. One notable weekend to look out for is the following race, which is the only one that takes place in New Zealand at the Hampton Downs Motorsport Park.
By the time the season finishes at the Coates Hire Newcastle 500 on 5-6 December, we’ll have undoubtedly witnessed stunning overtakes, thrilling wheel-to-wheel action and plenty of drama for everyone involved. Good luck to all and stay tuned to our social channels for all the action.
Our Hino Facebook page will ensure you keep updated on the team’s performance and continue to share money can’t buy experiences and unique highlights from the Championship calendar. Stay tuned!