Steane Klose | Feb 4, 2009

Come February 22nd, a record 49 teams will take to Australia's most famous racing venue, Mount Panorama, for the WPS Bathurst 12 hour Enduro. Joining the field will be none other than actor and car enthusiast Eric Bana.

Bana, you may remember, has been working on a documentary about just how much we all love cars, titled Love the Beast it's due out in early March. He will be piloting a Mitsubishi Evolution X across the mountain.

Bana, who will be joined by Tim Leahey and Peter Hill, had this to say:

"I'm thrilled to be able to compete in this Year's 12 Hour. Bathurst is an iconic track that I have always wanted to race at. Most of my racing has been on Victorian tracks so it will be a huge challenge.

"Tim and Peter are great mates which will make the Event a lot of fun regardless of outcome. I've never raced a 4WD, so I look forward to getting to grips with the EVO. It will certainly be different to my 996 Cup Car," he said.

It will be the biggest race of Bana's driving career, which has included several Targa Tasmania events and the Porsche Challenge.

eric_bana_racing

TV personality Grant Denyer will also be making a return to the track after a six month hiatus thanks to a back injury sustained behind the wheel of a monster truck. As you'd expect, Denyer is looking forward to his return:

"After spending almost four months staring at the ceiling, I've been scratching my eyes out to return to racing.

"We finished runner-up there last year, I think we missed out on the win by 23 seconds and this was after we copped three drive-through penalties during the race. So if we can keep out of trouble I think we're in for another good showing this year," Denyer said.

We wish all teams competing the very best of luck and can't wait for February 22nd to roll around. Mark it on your calendars guys and gals, it's sure to be fantastic race. For full details on the WPS Bathurst 12hr Enduro event, hit the press release below.

Star Studded Field For WPS Bathurst 12 Hour

Some of the biggest names in Australian motorsport are set to line up for the WPS Bathurst 12 Hour Showroom Enduro at Mount Panorama next month.

A total of 49 entries have been received for the February 20 – 22 Event with former Bathurst Champions Russell Ingall, John Bowe, Tony Longurst, Peter McLeod and Jason Bargwanna, V8 icons Glenn Seton, Brad Jones and Neil Crompton, reigning Fujitsu V8 Champion Steve Owen, Australian Rally Champions Neal Bates and Simon Evans and Australian actor turned racing driver Eric Bana all competing.

Bana, who has starred in such films as Chopper, Black Hawk Down, Hulk and Munich, has competed in several Targa Tasmania events and the Porsche Challenge previously but the WPS Bathurst 12 Hour Showroom Enduro will be the biggest race of the 40 year-old's racing career. He will compete in a Mitsubishi Evo X alongside Tim Leahey and Peter Hill.

"I'm thrilled to be able to compete in this Year's 12 Hour. Bathurst is an iconic track that I have always wanted to race at. Most of my racing has been on Victorian tracks so it will be a huge challenge," said Bana.

"Tim and Peter are great mates which will make the Event a lot of fun regardless of outcome. I've never raced a 4WD, so I look forward to getting to grips with the EVO. It will certainly be different to my 996 Cup Car."

Joining Bana at Mount Panorama next month will be television star Grant Denyer.

After spending the past six months recovering from a back injury suffered while driving a monster truck, the likeable 31 year-old will make his return to the driver's seat in the WPS Bathurst 12 Hour Showroom Enduro.

Denyer, who is the star of Channel 7's Australia's Got Talent and a former winner of Dancing with the Stars, is an established racer competing in the Bathurst 1000 and both 24-hour encounters held at Mount Panorama several years ago.

"After spending almost four months staring at the ceiling, I've been scratching my eyes out to return to racing," said Denyer.

"I had a scan yesterday and was given the full clearance to race subject to me being fully comfortable in the car.

"The WPS Bathurst 12 Hour is a great Event to get back behind the wheel at, it is a very enjoyable race with a heap of good drivers.

"We finished runner-up there last year, I think we missed out on the win by 23 seconds and this was after we copped three drive-through penalties during the race. So if we can keep out of trouble I think we're in for another good showing this year."

Event Director James O'Brien is delighted with the support shown by Australia's top level drivers for the once around the clock encounter which will see no less than 12 different marques competing.

The 49 entries received is a healthy increase on the 37 cars that took to the grid last year and represents an increase of 17 cars in the two years since the WPS Bathurst 12 Hour Showroom Enduro was rejuvenated in 2007.

"It is pleasing to see the increase in the overall numbers and also to see that eight of the top ten manufacturers by volume in Australia are represented at the Event," said O'Brien.

"The field for this year's WPS Bathurst 12 Hour is not only up on last year's but sees more competitors with a chance of outright victory.

"The Event has defied the current economic downturn, which can only be a good thing for the Australian motor sport industry and for the fans, with more cars, more marques, more drivers and as a direct result, stiffer competition all round on the cards for the 2009 Event.

"The wide variety of cars will certainly provide some interest with outright speed, race tactics, fuel strategy and team work all coming into play throughout the race."

The 2009 WPS Bathurst Showroom Enduro will be held at Mount Panorama on February 20-22.

The 2008 WPS 12 Hour Showroom Enduro attracted in excess of 100 drivers across 37 entries from various parts of Australia and New Zealand with the Mitsubishi Evo 9 of Damien White, Graham Alexander and Rod Salmon taking the victory.

For further enquires regarding the technical regulations in the WPS Bathurst Showroom Enduro please contact Jodi Zylstra – SPHERIX, phone 07 5667 7384 or email [email protected]

For media enquires please contact Lee Hanatschek – BAM Media, phone 07 5563 1155 or email [email protected]

Tickets to 2009 WPS Bathurst 12 Hour Showroom Enduro

Patrons attending the 2009 Event are strongly encouraged to pre purchase their tickets through Ticketek in order to take advantage of the Advance Pricing. Patrons will only be able to purchase tickets through Ticketek up to and including Sunday 15 February 2009 after which patrons will need to purchase their tickets at the Gate – see prices below.

WPS Bathurst 12 Hour Showroom Enduro Ticket Prices

Friday GA Adult $15(Advance) $20(At the gate)

Friday GA Concession $10(Advance) $15(At the gate)

Saturday GA Adult $20(Advance) $25(At the gate)

Saturday GA Concession $15(Advance) $20(At the gate)

Sunday GA Adult $20(Advance) $25(At the gate)

Sunday GA Concession $15(Advance) $20(At the gate)

Three Day GA Adult $40(Advance) $50(At the gate)

Three Day GA Concession $30(Advance) $40(At the gate)

Three Day Covered Grandstand Adult $50(Advance) $60(At the gate)

Three Day Covered Grandstand Concession $40(Advance) $50(At the gate)

2009 WPS BATHURST 12 HOUR SHOWROOM ENDURO

Class A - High Performance Rear Wheel Drive

5 Holden HSV VY Series II Barrie Nesbitt Paul Freestone Robert Jones

11 BMW 335i Barry Morcom Luke Searle Paul Stubber

12 Holden HSV VY GTS Coupe Tony Alford Peter Leemhuis Mal Rose

20 BMW 335i Gary Holt Paul Morris Rick Shaw

32 Holden VE R8 Clubsport Gerard Keogh tbc tbc

tbc Holden VE R8 Clubsport Shaun Keogh tbc tbc

51 Holden HSV VZ GTO Coupe Ian Tulloch John Sax Connel McLaren

69 Holden HSV VY GTS Coupe Todd Zani John O'Dowd Jim Pollicina

71 Holden HSV VY Series II David Mertins Leigh Mertins Steve Cramp

99 Ford Falcon FG GT-P Nathan Tinkler Nathan Callagham tbc

tbc Holden R8 Clubsport Marty Miller Kerry Millar tbc

tbc Holden HSV R8 Sportwagon Russell Ingall Nathan Pretty Andy Jones

Class B - High Performance Sports

15 Nissan 350Z Track Z33 Josh Hunt Jonathan Webb Paul Stokell

10 Lotus Exige Mark O'Connor tbc tbc

Class C - High Performance All Wheel Drive

tbc Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo X Rod Salmon Tony Longhurst Damien White

3 Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo IX Steven Jones Kerry Wade Aaron Caratti

9 Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo X Charlie Holings George Meidecke Nathan Caratti

22 Subaru Impreza WRX Sti Chris Delfsma David Wood Gary Tierney

25 Subaru Impreza WRX Sti Craig Baird Lee Castle Rodney Forbes

26 Subaru Impreza WRX Sti Paul Kelly Dean Grant Max Twigg

29 Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo VIII Tony Quinn Klark Quinn Grant Denyer

33 Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo X Mark King Bob Pearson Bruce Stewart

34 Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo X Jason Bargwanna Neil Crompton Brad Jones

35 Mitubishi Lancer RS Evo X Glenn Seton Steve Knight tbc

43 Mitsubishi Lacer GSR Evo IX David Wall Des Wall Trevor Symonds

44 Subaru Impreza WRX Sti Jim Hunter John Bowe Gavin Bullas

55 Mitsubuishi Lancer RS Evo X Glyn Crimp Tony Ricciardello Stuart Kostura

91 Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo VIII Anton Mechtler Jason Walsh Mark Brame

96 Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo IX James Koundouris Theo Koundouris Steve Owen

tbc Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo X Tim Leahey Peter Hill Eric Bana

Class D - Hot Hatch Performance Cars

36 Mazda 3 MPS 3A Jake Camilleri Scott Nicholas

27 BMW 130i Alan Shepard Peter O'Donnell

28 BMW 130i Greg Ross tbc

Class E - Production Sedans

8 Ford XR8 FG Glen Kenny Corey Baldock Tom Todd

17 Ford XR6 TURBO Jason Tremeer Craig Tremeer Troy Stone

18 Ford XR6 TURBO Alan Letcher Clint Harvey Malcom Nial

24 Holden Commodore SS VZ Garth Walden Brian Walden Michael Auld

94 Ford BF Richard Howe Dennis O'Keefe Dean Neville

Class F - Production Sports

13 Toyota Celica ZR Colin Osborne Neal Bates Simon Evans

14 Honda Integra type S Peter Conroy Carl Schembri Richard Gartner

21 Honda Integra type S Terry Conroy Lee Burgess Leanne Tander

31 Toyota Celica ZR John Rocken Stuart Jones Trevor Keene

50 Holden Astra Sri Gerard McLeod Peter McLeod Ryan McLeod

Class G - Micro Sedans and Hatches

66 Subaru Impreza 2.5 Heather Spurle Christina Orr Molly Taylor

88 Subaru Impreza 2.0R Matthew Windsor Steve Sheils Paul Newman

Class H - Eco Diesel/Hybrid 3.5 litre and Over

76 Alfa Romeo 159 JTD Kean Booker Rocco Rinnaldo David Stone

Class I - Eco Diesel/Hybrid Under 3.5 litre

77 Alfa Romeo 147 JTD David Filipetto Nathan Gotch tbc

tbc Holden Astra CDTi Nigel Barclay tbc tbc

Class J - Sports Utility Vehicles & V8 Utes

47 Holden SS VE UTE Grant Johnson Jeff Watts

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