Australia: V8 Ute Drivers

 Successful On and Off the TrackIf you have ever watched the Yokohama V8 Ute Racing Series then it is no secret that the 32 strong field is made up of characters who not only sport interesting nicknames like, Grunta, Chucky and Hollywood but are also talented in the business world.

22 out of the 32 drivers own their own business and amongst them the companies range from IT, Butchers, delivery service, Smash Repairs, Panel Beaters, juice producers, truck, service stations, roofing, construction, electrical and a major backpacking company.Charlie Kovacs who has been racing the Utes since their inception in 2001 runs a successful delivery company R.E.D express and is one of the major sponsors of his Holden Ute.

Other Drivers who have followed in Kovacs footsteps is Wake up Backpackers entrepreneur, Warren Millet, Brunswick Valley Coaches owner Robert Jarvis, Grove Fruit Juice’s Greg Willis, and Wayne “Chook” Lamont who started Lamont Constructions in Townsville, QLD.

Also to follow suit is newcomer and 2009 Rookie, Jason Gomersall who established a company called iseek in 1989.

Gomersall will by vying for Rookie of the year this year and will soon have to learn how to balance racing and running a successful business. 

“As it is my first year racing I think it will be a real challenge for me but hopefully it will get easier in the years to come,” said Gomersall.

Someone who could lend some advice to Gomersall is fellow Queenslander, Greg “Freddy” Willis the owner of Grove Fruit Juice.

Willis is coming into his fourth year of Ute Racing and before getting into the Utes as a driver, sponsored Ryal Harris in 2004 and Adam Bessington in 2005.

He jumped behind the wheel three times in 2005 with fellow driver Matthew Moorehead and now sponsors two cars, his own and fellow Hi Tech Motorsport teammate Grant Johnson’s – all whilst managing his company.

“I rely heavily on Barrel from Hi Tech Motorsport. The key is to really get yourself a good manager,” explained Willis.

The V8 Utes will begin their season March 19 – 22 at Clipsal 500 in Adelaide so be sure to check out the livery and the talented business owners.


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