Neil Crompton

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For the Australian rules footballer of the same name, see Neil Crompton (footballer).
Neil Crompton
Neil Crompton 2009 Sydney 500 launch.jpg
Crompton at the Sydney 500 launch in 2009.
Nationality Australian
Born (1960-07-30) 30 July 1960 (age 53)
Retired 2002
ATCC / V8 Supercar
Years active 1987–2002
Teams Advantage Racing
Holden Racing Team
Bob Forbes Motorsport
Wayne Gardner Racing
Glenn Seton Racing
Gibson Motor Sport
Starts 85
Best finish 10th in 1994 & 1995 Australian Touring Car Championship
Previous series
1989–92
1997

1998
Australian Drivers' Championship
North American Touring Car Championship
Australian GT Production Car Championship
Championship titles
1994 Bathurst 12 Hour

Neil Crompton (born 30 July 1960) is a well-known V8 Supercars presenter and commentator for Australia's Channel Seven, having previously worked in a similar role at Network Ten. Crompton ("Cromley" or "Crompo" to his friends and colleagues) has more than 15 years of professional racing car driving under his belt which allows him to "speak from experience" when commentating.

Racing career[edit]

Highlights[edit]

According to the official V8 Supercars website,[1] Crompton has competed in 357 various motor racing events, finishing in the first three places on 58 occasions. 230 of those races were with events counting towards the Australian Touring Car Championship (nowadays promoted as the V8Supercar Championship Series), including three second places and ten thirds.

He has raced at the famous Mount Panorama Circuit in Bathurst, New South Wales on more than 20 occasions dating back to his 1988 debut with Peter Brock's Mobil BMW Team. His best results being two third placings in the crash shortened 1992 race with Swede Anders Olofsson in a Gibson Motor Sport Nissan GT-R and in 1995 with 1987 500cc Grand Prix Motorcycle World Champion Wayne Gardner in a Wayne Gardner Racing Holden Commodore in addition to winning the 1994 12 Hour endurance race with Gregg Hansford in a factory supported Mazda RX-7.

Early years[edit]

Crompton started racing in 1972 at age eleven on a Honda minibike before graduating to motocross where he had some success.

In 1985 he moved to racing cars and has raced in various, mostly sedan-based categories, starting in a series production specification Mitsubishi Cordia. Racing categories that he has contested include V8 Supercars, Super Touring Cars, and Group A Touring Cars, as well as the open-wheel categories of Formula Holden and Formula 3000.

Crompton's first big break in motor sport came when he was selected by Peter Brock as a driver in the Holden Dealer Team's second Group A VL Commodore for the long distance races in late 1987. This included drives in the 1987 Castrol 500 at Sandown where he and Formula 2 ace Jon Crooke finished a creditable 4th, and later at the Bob Jane T-Marts 500 at Calder Park which was Round 9 of the 1987 World Touring Car Championship. He was to have made his Bathurst 1000 debut in 1987 but was one race short of gaining the appropriate FIA licence needed. In a cruel twist, the #10 Commodore he was to have driven would go on to win the race in the hands of Brock, David Parsons, and his replacement for the race, Peter McLeod.

Crompton remained with Brock's Mobil sponsored team for 1988, though by that time they had switched to running BMW M3's. He made his Australian Touring Car Championship debut that year, driving the third of the team's cars to 8th in Round 8 at Amaroo Park, and 11th in the final round at Oran Park. After a promising start to the endurance races with where he and David Parsons finished 4th in the Pepsi 250 at Oran Park (won by Brock and Jim Richards), he failed to finish at both Sandown and Bathurst.

In 1989 Crompton joined the Holden Racing Team, staying with them until the end of 1991. He also started racing Formula Holden in 1989, finishing third in the Australian Drivers' Championship and fifteenth in 1990. Although he did not have a regular ATCC seat with HRT, he co-drove the team's second Commodore in both years, though results were not forthcoming.

Also in 1991, Crompton drove a 6 cyl Holden VN Commodore S with Peter Brock and motoring journalist/race driver Peter McKay to win Class C and finish 4th outright in the inaugural Bathurst 12 Hour.

Crompton returned to the Brock team for the first half of the 1992 ATCC, with a best finish of 7th in Round 3 at Symmons Plains. With the team short of funds, Crompton left the team mid-season and returned to the Seven commentary booth, though he did drive in the final round of the 1992 Australian Drivers' Championship. He then joined Gibson Motor Sport for the 1992 Tooheys 1000 in the team's second Nissan GT-R. In a race marred by heavy rain, accidents, and the death of 1967 Formula One World Champion Denny Hulme from a heart attack, Crompton and Sweden's Anders Olofsson finished 3rd in the crash shortened race, with Crompton giving the unruly crowd the finger from the podium on national television.

In 1993, Crompton ran the 1993 ATCC in a Holden VP Commodore for Bob Forbes Racing. His first full ATCC ended with a disappointing 13th place finish in the standings. In 1994 he joined 1987 500cc Grand Prix World Champion Wayne Gardner in Gardner's newly established Wayne Gardner Racing.

In 1997 Crompton headed to the US to compete in the new North American Touring Car Championship in a Honda Accord run by the Tasman Motorsports team. Crompton was quickly on the pace, and won several races and was in contention for the championship, before a disqualification (which he still disputes) precluded him from winning the title. Crompton also tested one of Tasman's Champ Cars at Gingerman Raceway.

Later years[edit]

In 1998 Crompton started with Glenn Seton Racing, continuing with the team in its new identity as Ford Tickford Racing in 1999. He then moved to Gibson Motor Sport, later renamed 00 Motorsport, in 2001 where he was teamed with Craig Lowndes before leaving at the end of the 2002 season.

Despite being a full-time television commentator, Crompton continues to compete in races when he can, particularly endurance races. Most recently he finished 17th in the 2009 Bathurst 12 Hour race, completing 222 laps (1,379 km / 857 miles) driving a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X with Glenn Seton. Crompton occasionally competes in the Aussie Racing Cars series and has also competed in the Australian Rally Championship.

Crompton also works on the organisational side of V8 Supercar contributing to TEGA's Parity Board, which works to ensure that neither of the competing marques gains a significant advantage over the other.

Media career[edit]

Crompton started commentating at motorcross events for Network Ten, then known as the 0/10 Network. He then worked for the ABC from around 1980 until the end of 1984, commentating on motorsport events such as the Australian Touring Car Championship (ATCC) plus various other motorsport events that the network covered such as the Sandown 500. In 1985 when the ATCC rights moved to Channel Seven, Crompton also moved across to Seven, replacing Evan Green and joining the network's motorsport regulars Mike Raymond & Garry Wilkinson in the commentary box. He would stay with the network in a gradually decreasing capacity until the end of 1995, his latter years there including regular segments on the TV program "The Great Outdoors". During this time he also had segments on the Triple M radio network.

In 1996 he returned to Network Ten to be their "motorsport expert" for their coverage of the CART Series & Australian Super Touring Championship for which they had just gained the broadcasting rights, and which would also end up including Formula One. Crompton was a regular presenter of Ten's popular motoring magazine program, RPM, and after his racing career wound down at the end of 2002 until the end of 2006, he was the expert commentator on Ten's coverage of the V8 Supercars (after being lead commentator throughout 2001 when he only drove in endurance races).

When the Seven Network bought the television broadcasting rights for the V8 Supercars for 2007 onwards, Crompton, along with a majority of the production team, moved to Seven. Crompton's detailed technical knowledge, combined with his racing and commentating experience, ensures that he is considered an extremely valuable part of the Seven Network's coverage of the series.

Crompton also co-hosted the popular web show "The Panelbeaters" with longtime friend Brad Jones. The show ran every Friday evening before a V8 Supercar meeting, and the Wednesday after. The show began as a radio programme in 2003 on Victorian station SEN 1116, before being taken on by Telstra Bigpond, and made into a video web show. The program was axed after the 2008 season.

After a short time off the radio waves, Crompton returned to broadcasting on radio this time with former Australian V8 Supercar champion Mark Skaife on The Stick Shift, a motoring based show broadcast on the Triple M Network on Saturday mornings.

Personal life[edit]

Crompton married longtime partner Sarah Mathewson in March 2008.[2]

Career results[edit]

Season Series Position Car Team
1988 Australian Touring Car Championship 20th BMW M3 Mobil 1 Racing
1989 Australian Drivers' Championship 3rd Ralt RT20 Holden Boylan Racing
1990 Australian Drivers' Championship 4th Ralt RT20 Holden Boylan Racing
1990 Australian Touring Car Championship 15th Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV Holden Racing Team
1992 Australian Touring Car Championship 15th Holden VN Commodore SS Group A Mobil 1 Racing
1992 Australian Drivers' Championship 10th Ralt RT20 Holden Boylan Racing
1993 Australian Touring Car Championship 13th Holden VP Commodore Bob Forbes Motorsport
1994 Australian Touring Car Championship 10th Holden VP Commodore Wayne Gardner Racing
1995 Australian Touring Car Championship 10th Holden VR Commodore Wayne Gardner Racing
1996 Australian Touring Car Championship 13th Holden VR Commodore Wayne Gardner Racing
1997 North American Touring Car Championship 3rd Honda Accord Tasman Motorsports
1998 Australian GT Production Car Championship 9th Ferrari F355 Challenge Ross Palmer Motorsport
1998 Australian Touring Car Championship 24th Ford EL Falcon Glenn Seton Racing
1999 Shell Championship Series 12th Ford EL Falcon
Ford AU Falcon
Ford Tickford Racing
2000 Shell Championship Series 12th Ford AU Falcon Ford Tickford Racing
2001 Shell Championship Series 54th Ford AU Falcon Gibson Motor Sport
2002 V8 Supercar Championship Series 17th Ford AU Falcon 00 Motorsport

Complete World Touring Car Championship results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 DC Points
1987 Mobil HDT Holden VL Commodore SS Group A MNZ JAR DIJ NUR SPA BNO SIL BAT CLD
11
WEL
Ret
FJI NC 0

Complete Asia-Pacific Touring Car Championship results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 DC Points
1988 Mobil 1 Racing BMW M3 BAT
Ret
WEL
Ret
PUK
4
FJI NC 0

References[edit]

  1. ^ Profile at v8supercars.com.au
  2. ^ "Cromley gets hitched"

External links[edit]