1. Red Bull Racing Australia’s Jamie Whincup starts the hunt in Adelaide for an unprecedented seventh V8 Supercars Championship. He is also aiming to become the first driver to win five crowns in a row, currently sitting alongside the late Ian ‘Pete’ Geoghegan as the only driver to win four championships in succession. His RBRA team is also aiming for history of its own – to become the first to claim the Team’s Championship six times in a row.
2. Holden pilots Garth Tander and Craig Lowndes will rack up their 17th Clipsal 500 appearance this year, making them the only drivers to have competed in each and every Clipsal 500 since it began back in 1999.
The retirement of Russell Ingall – who competed in every Clipsal from 1999 to 2014 – also leaves Lowndes as the most experienced driver in the championship with 236 ATCC/V8SC round starts.
3. The return of Marcos Ambrose means that all bar one of the 10 Clipsal 500 victors from the event’s 16-year history will be on the grid for the 2015 event.
Craig Lowndes (1999), Garth Tander (2000, 2010), Jason Bright (2001), Ambrose (2004, 2005), Jamie Whincup (2006, 2008, 2009, 2011), Rick Kelly (2007), Will Davison (2012), Shane van Gisbergen (2013) and James Courtney (2014) will line up among the 25-car field.
The only other Clipsal 500 winner is Mark Skaife (2002, 2003).
4. The new model Ford Falcon FG X makes its racing debut at the Clipsal 500 and the new car desperately needs to make an impact and stop Holden’s recent domination of the event.
Ford has won just one of the last 11 individual races in Adelaide from 2010 onwards.
History is also against Pepsi Max Crew pilot Mark Winterbottom, who has never claimed a race win or a pole position at the Clipsal 500.
He also remains the last driver to claim a pole position for Ford – way back in November 2013 at Phillip Island.
It is the longest pole position drought Ford has had in the championship in the last 30 years.
5. The Holden Racing Team begins a very special season in Adelaide given 2015 is the 25th anniversary of the creation of the team in 1990.
HRT has won more Clipsal 500s – six – than any other team in the event’s history and holds the record for most race wins (175) and pole positions (89) in ATCC/V8SC history.
6. Team BOC’s Jason Bright, aged 41, becomes the oldest driver on the grid following the retirement of 2005 V8 Supercars Champion Russell Ingall.
Craig Lowndes now becomes the second oldest (aged 40) while 19-year-old Super Black signing Andre Heimgartner is the youngest on the grid.
The average age of the grid in Adelaide is 30.6 with 14 drivers in their 30s and eight in their 20s.
7. Wilson Security GRM Volvo pilot David Wall will celebrate a milestone in his debut for Garry Rogers’ team – his 50th V8 Supercars Championship round start.
Now in his fourth full-time V8SC season with his third different team, Wall finished eighth in Race 3 in Adelaide last year and won the Australian GT round there in 2010.
Another driver making a ‘50’ in Adelaide is new Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport recruit Nick Percat. The 2011 Bathurst 1000 winner will start his 50th V8SC race in the season opener on the Saturday.
Erebus Motorsport V8’s Will Davison is set to start his 300th V8SC race in Race 2 on Saturday at the Clipsal 500.
8. Dunlop will celebrate a special milestone at the Clipsal 500 – the season opening race on Saturday will be its 400th race as control tyre supplier to the V8 Supercars Championship.
The company has provided the control tyre to both the V8SC and Dunlop Series since 2002.
9. Ash Walsh (Erebus Motorsport V8) and Andre Heimgartner (Super Black Racing) are the two rookies in this year’s Clipsal 500 field.
Neither has competed in the main Clipsal 500 event before, however both have experience in Adelaide in the V8 Supercars Dunlop Series and Heimgartner has also raced there in Porsche Carrera Cup.
Walsh won a race in each of the last two years in Adelaide in the DVS and was runner-up in the 2013 series.
10. V8 Supercars Dunlop Series Champion Paul Dumbrell makes history in Adelaide as the first champion in the series’ 16-year history to return and attempt to defend his title.
He will also become the first DVS champion in history to run with the Number 1 after a change during the off-season opened up a separate pool of numbers for the DVS rather than utilising the same pool as the V8 Supercars Championship.
The V8 Supercars Return To TEN. The Home Of Big Event Motorsport
Friday, February 27. 12.00pm – 5.00pm AEDT live on TEN.
Saturday, February 28. 12.00pm – 6.30pm AEDT live on TEN.
Sunday, March 1. 12.00pm – 6.30pm AEDT live on TEN.