SOUTHPORT, Australia—The organizers of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship have extended the series' control tire supply contract with Dunlop Tyres Australia/New Zealand and Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd. (SRI) through the end of the 2019 season.
SRI has supplied the championship—Australia's premier sedan racing series—with Dunlop racing tires since 2002, according to V8 Supercars Australia Pty. Ltd. and TouringCar Entrants Group Australia Pty. Ltd., the organizers of the Supercars Championship and its companion Dunlop Development Series.
"This is a really exciting win for Dunlop," said Lou Mandanici, vice president, consumer passenger business unit and wholesale, Dunlop Tyres ANZ. "We have a proud and well-established association with motorsport in Australia and our long standing partnership with the Virgin Supercars Championship…is testament of our strong relationship and their confidence in Dunlop to deliver tires to the highest performance standard….
"The decision by Supercars to continue this relationship is strong validation of the job we have done over time, and demonstrates their confidence in our ability to supply high performing and quality tires, as well as a reliable operations group to service the race teams."
Financial terms were not disclosed.
SRI estimated it has supplied the Supercars Championship and the associated Dunlop Development Series with roughly 210,000 race tires over the past 14 seasons, the organizers said. The contract extension represents about 40,000 more tires over the coming three seasons.
SRI/Dunlop is expected to introduce a new spec tire next year to improve the Supercars racing experience further for both the drivers and spectators.
Supercars Australia Chief Executive James Warburton said: "Dunlop is one of our longest running partners and is an integral part of the best touring racing on the planet."
The series—formerly known as the Australian Touring Car Championship, or the V8 Supercars—has been running since 1960. The rules call for a spec chassis design and specifications, with differing engine and four-door body styles. The rules specify 18-inch wheels and tires.
Five manufacturer brands are involved: Ford; Holden (General Motors); Mercedes-Benz; Nissan; and Volvo.