HRT Selects Greg Murphy As Number One Draft Pick
By: Holden Motorsport
The Holden Racing Team has chosen Greg Murphy as its number one ‘draft pick’ for the V8 endurance races at Sandown and Bathurst later this year.
Murphy became available when he was unable to find a suitable full-time drive for this year’s V8 Supercars Championship.
The 40-year-old Kiwi is a four-time Bathurst 1000 winner, his first victory coming while co-driving with Craig Lowndes for HRT in 1996. The pair also won back-to-back Sandown 500 titles for the team in 1996/97.
“Life’s come a full circle and I couldn’t be happier, I’m back with the Holden Racing Team where it all started. To be part of the factory Holden team feels very right,” Murphy said.
While disappointed at not having a full-time seat, Murphy said re-joining HRT gave him his best chance of adding to his Bathurst titles.
“It takes time accepting change, but it’s happened. It just worked out that there wasn’t [a full-time] place for me in 2013,” he said.
“I didn’t want to be part of a team that couldn’t provide a strong prospect of winning races, so the best option was driving in the enduros only with a team that gave me a real chance.
“HRT goes to Sandown and Bathurst to win. This is the best opportunity I’ve had to win those races in the past few years – this is the best place for me to be.”
Garth Tander, who enters his sixth full-time season with HRT, said Murphy was the team’s first choice for enduro co-drivers.
“Murph’s the number one draft pick for Sandown and Bathurst, no question,” Tander said.
“He’s got so much experience, so for us to have him as part of our team in our garage throughout the year, let alone the enduros, is fantastic.”
Tander said no decision had yet been made on whether Murphy would partner him or teammate James Courtney.
Murphy recently underwent a seat fitting in Tander’s brand new VF Commodore, which is undergoing final assembly under tight security, with HRT’s Clayton headquarters under complete lockdown ahead of next week’s unveiling of the exciting new generation Holden.
“Between James and me, I’m tallest, so if Murph fitted my car it meant our options were open,” Tander said.
“He fitted quite comfortably in my car, which surprised me. That gives us flexibility. There’s nine months until Sandown, so we’ll see how the season pans out before making any decisions.”
The Holden Racing Team will unveil its new VF Commodore V8s next Monday, 11 February.
Built to V8 Supercars’ new Car Of The Future regulations, the new model Commodore replaces Holden’s VE Series. With its 103 race wins, VE was the most successful racecar in Australian touring car history.