V8 Ute Racing Series
|Category||Pickup truck racing|
|Drivers' champion||Ryal Harris|
|Official website||V8 Utes Australia|
The V8 Ute Racing Series is an Australian motor racing series for utilities, derived from the Australian Production Car Championship. It was conceived in 2000 by PROCAR chief Ross Palmer, V8 Ute Patron Ian McAlister and current category manager of SPHERIX Craig Denyer and launched March 2001, as V8 Brute Utes, at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide. The series was instantly popular, in part because of aggressive driving style of competitors, a style encouraged by the use of reverse grid racing, but also because of its very fan friendly marketing which included gimmicks like referring to each of its drivers by a nickname.
Presently, entry into V8 Utes racing is via a franchise, which has been limited to 32 in number, 16 specifically to be Ford Falcon XR8 Utes, 16 Holden SS Utes. All the rounds are shared with V8 Supercars, Australia's top motorsport championship.
Holden driver Rod Wilson was the inaugural series winner. Sydney's Warren Luff, took back to back victories in 2002 and 2003. Holden again returned to form in 2004 with Damien White taking the series title, before defecting to Ford and taking the title again in 2005 by a narrow margin to Melbourne's Marcus Zukanovic.
Ryal Harris is the series most successful driver, becoming the first three-time champion in 2015. Luff and White have each won two titles.
The series covers eight rounds at various tracks throughout Australia. The reverse grid racing format is extremely popular with the race fans. Drivers have included former Australian NASCAR champion Kim Jane, actor George Elliot, country music singer Adam Brand, television host Grant Denyer, driving instructor Gary Baxter, former Waratahs and Australian Sevens rugby union player Ben Dunn, former Manly Sea Eagles and Sydney Roosters National Rugby League player Jack Elsegood who was also the 2009 series winner, and former V8 Supercar drivers Cameron McConville and Nathan Pretty.
- V8 Ute Racing Series
|2001||Rod Wilson||Holden SS Ute|
|2002||Warren Luff||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2003||Warren Luff||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2004||Damien White||Holden SS Ute|
|2005||Damien White||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2006||Marcus Zukanovic||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2007||Grant Johnson||Holden SS Ute|
|2008||Layton Crambrook||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2009||Jack Elsegood||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2010||Grant Johnson||Holden SS Ute|
|2011||Chris Pither||Holden SS Ute|
|2012||Ryal Harris||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2013||Ryal Harris||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2014||Kris Walton||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2015||Ryal Harris||Ford Falcon XR8|
|2016||David Sieders ||Holden SS Ute|
- Summer Series
|2004||Grant Denyer||Ford Falcon XR8|
|This motorsport-related article is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|