Three-time New Zealand V8 touring car champion John McIntyre has been signed to partner Australian driver Will Davison in his Ford Performance Racing (FPR) V8 Supercar for next season’s two main endurance races.
McIntyre will join Davison in the #6 Tradingpost FPR Falcon for the Sandown 500 and Bathurst 1000 events in September and October next year.
In an announcement from FPR today team principal Tim Edwards said he was pleased to secure McIntyre’s services before the 2012 season started.
As well as the three New Zealand V8 titles, McIntyre has two V8 Supercar podiums to his credit and this year finished fifth at the L&H 500 at Phillip Island and sixth at Bathurst co-driving with fellow Kiwi Shane van Gisbergen and Stone Brothers Racing.
McIntyre said: “First up, FPR is the Ford factory team and as a Ford-supported driver it is a real honour to be driving with them.
“As a professional V8 Supercar co-driver I only enter two races a year in Australia so my goal has to be to win the endurance events and in particular, Bathurst. To head there in the #6 Tradingpost FPR Falcon with Will Davison in 2012 gives me my greatest shot yet at a Bathurst win.
“It is also a relief to know where I am driving well before the New Year. Last year I had six or seven months out of the car and that makes it hard. I have now met the team and tested the car before the year is out which puts us on the front foot and gives us a jump on everyone else.”
McIntyre enjoyed his first taste of FPR machinery at the team’s final test day of the year at Winton Motor Raceway in northern Victoria on 12 December.
Edwards noted McIntyre’s impressive performances in this year’s enduros.
“After analysing John’s performances against his team-mate this year and against the other co-drivers, it was clear that he was one of the standout performers,” Edwards said.
“It is a real boost to our team to secure someone of his experience so far in advance of next season as it will allow us extra time to integrate John into our team and get him familiar with Will and our car.
“That process starts today with our test so we are already well underway with our preparations for next year. By winning the last race of the year and with our endurance race line-up already locked away, we head into the off-season break in the ideal position.”
FPR’s other driver Mark Winterbottom will again be partnered by Steve Richards in 2012 in the #5 Orrcon Steel FPR Falcon as Richards is entering the second season of his two-year endurance race deal with the team.
John McIntyre Racing appreciates the support of Blackwoods Paykels, Protector Safety, Amcor, Talley’s, Castrol Edge, BP Ultimate, NZ Ceiling and Drywall Supplies, Ideal Electrical, Websters Hydrated Lime Co, Squawking Magpie Wines, Dynamic Fluid Systems, EATON, Ford New Zealand, Irwin Tools and Showquip.
More details about McIntyre and his team can be found on www.jmr.co.nz