11/08/2017

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Mark Horsburgh

Caption: 

#97 Shane van Gisbergen, Pukekohe 2016

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Iconic New Zealand company ITM will continue as naming rights partner of the country’s largest annual motorsport event, the ITM Auckland SuperSprint.

The 2017 ITM Auckland SuperSprint Supercars, to be held at the spiritual home of motorsport in this country at Pukekohe Park Raceway on 3-5 November, was launched in Auckland today.

It will mark the 17th time Supercars has competed in New Zealand, and will be buoyed by dominant performances of defending Kiwi Champion Shane van Gisbergen, Fabian Coulthard and current leader Scott McLaughlin in this year’s Championship.

Coulthard was in Auckland today to launch the 2017 ITM Auckland SuperSprint to news that ITM was on board ahead of his favourite Supercars event.

“All the drivers enjoy coming to New Zealand for sure, but for us three Kiwi drivers, coming home and racing at Pukekohe is very special,” said Coulthard.

“Auckland is my home so to race in front of friends and family is fantastic. And the noise from the fans, particularly from the Hill on the front straight, is incredible. It is a feeling like no other.

“Right now with Shane (van Gisbergen) and my Shell-V Power Racing teammate Scott (McLaughlin), the Kiwi boys have had a great start to the year.

“The big PIRTEK Enduro Cup is fast approaching and after that we head to Pukekohe where I know, with the fantastic support from local fans, we can put on a really great show.”

ITM Marketing Manager Chris Boyle said the partnership with the event had grown since ITM first secured naming rights to become a feature of the company’s brand portfolio.

“Being able to continue to support the ITM Auckland Supersprint for another three years was a fantastic opportunity that we couldn’t pass up,” Boyle said.

“As the largest sporting event in New Zealand, with three Kiwi’s showing the Ozzies how it’s done, and the tremendous love of motorsport by the ITM store owners and customers, we were excited to be able to bring the race back to Pukekohe.

“The ITM Auckland Supersprint truly has become an event not to miss. ITM is very excited about the future racing and looking forward to the ongoing relationship with Supercars and ATEED.”

Supercars and the Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) are in discussions about the future of the Auckland event.

“New Zealanders are among some of the most passionate and knowledgeable motorsport fans anywhere in the world and we are delighted to showcase Supercars and this great city to a global audience,” said Supercars Managing Director, Matt Braid.

“To have an ongoing partnership with such a fantastic New Zealand company such as ITM is tremendous for the event which is one of the biggest and best on our yearly calendar.”

The event has attracted around two million fans since 2001, while Supercars has become a popular motorsport category globally, now reaching 263 million homes in 92 countries.

Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) Head of Major Events, Charmaine Ngarimu says the ITM Auckland SuperSprint continues a stellar year of major sporting events for Auckland.

“We look forward to welcoming the ITM Auckland SuperSprint Supercars back for the sole New Zealand event in the championship, with all the action and excitement that comes with it,” she said.

“This adrenalin-pumping event is a fitting continuation to the spectacular year of major sporting events Auckland is hosting, including the World Masters Games 2017, the DHL New Zealand Lions Series, the inaugural MCKAYSON New Zealand Woman’s Open, and Rugby League World Cup 2017.”

Tickets are now on sale at Ticketek for the ITM Auckland SuperSprint, which will be decided on a new format with two longer 200km races on each of Saturday and Sunday.

Family concessions mean kids 12 and under get access to trackside free (with a paying adult). Grandstand ticket prices are better value than ever with single day grandstand tickets available.

https://nzmotorracing.co.nz