Big Pineapple to meet big Bathurst 12HR in 2013BIG PINEAPPLE TO MEET BIG BATHURST 12HR IN 2013
ONE OF AUSTRALIA’s most famous ‘big things’ will have a ‘big’ presence at another in 2013.
Queensland’s Big Pineapple Music Festival will be the major sponsor of the first entrant for the 2013 Bathurst 12 Hour endurance race, to be held on February 8-10 next year at Australia’s ‘Big’ race track; Mount Panorama.
Team ‘Big Pineapple Music Festival’ is the first to formally submit an entry to the 2013 race, confirming their participation with a Type-997 Porsche GT3 Cup Car, to be driven by Brad Rankin, Terry Knight, John Goodacre and Matthew Kingsley.
The team will compete in Class B (GT3) but their driver line-up suggests the potential for bigger results than just a class win.
Kingsley is a former champion of the one-make Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge series, and this year has shown his mettle by finishing on the podium in Porsche Carrera Cup championship races against the likes of former Bathurst 12 Hour winner Craig Baird, and Alex Davison.
The quartet has, between them, more than 150 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge races to their credit and each has experience at Bathurst. It’s a strong combination filled with experience and plenty of enthusiasm for the big race.
The team is likely to approach the race with the same ‘bright’ attitude that befits the car’s rather vibrant livery, promoting the inaugural Big Pineapple Music Festival scheduled for late February 2013.
“This plan came together over a few beers as a ‘bucket list’ thing that we all wanted to do, which evolved into us telling ‘Legend’ (car owner Brad Rankin) we were using his car and that he’d be driving,” said Terry Knight.
“He was good enough to agree and we made sure we were the first to commit to entering the race. It’s a fantastic Event that most of us have got experience in – either working on cars, driving or officiating – and the chance to get a bunch of mates together in a Porsche to race there is just too good to resist.
“Between us we’ve had the odd lap or two around that place. We are all great mates and should have a good crack at it. It certainly won’t be lacking in team chemistry – the trash talking has already started!”
Class B Porsche entrants have had a strong run at Bathurst since the introduction of GT cars to the race in 2011, Kingsley teaming with Roger Lago and David Russell to finish 5th outright that year. This year, Nathan Tinkler teamed with V8 Supercar ace’s Steven Johnston and Steven Richards to go one better, scoring fourth in an attrition-filled race.
Knight says the durability of the Porsche made it the ideal weapon with which to tackle 12 Hours on Australia’s toughest race track.
“Everyone knows how good these cars are over a distance,” he said.
“With us you’d be preaching to the converted. Between the four of us there is plenty of experience racing these cars, so we know the ins and outs of what make them tick. They’re reliably fast cars and perfect for this race.
“The other three would give me grief if I predicted results for our little exercise, but previous races have shown what these cars can do. If those of us in the team trying to keep up with Kingsley’s pace manage to keep the thing out of the fence, then the rest should take care of itself!”
The 2013 Bathurst 12 Hour will be held on February 8-10.
A preliminary entry list will be made available early next week.
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