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V8 aces swap lead boots for feather feet


V8 aces swap lead boots for feather feet

Sunday 10 to Monday 11 November will be like chalk and cheese for V8 Supercar drivers Greg Murphy and Jason Richards.

Fresh from the flat out action at the V8 races at Pukekohe, the two will need to put all their throttle-control skills into economy mode for the following four days as they attempt to eke out as many kilometers as possible out of each litre of fuel in the Energywise Rally 2002.

The only common thread will be the vehicle – Murphy and Richards will again be driving a V8 Commodore, but this time it will be a standard production model – a new VY Series 5.7 litre with automatic transmission.

Some may question why enter a 5.7 litre V8 in a fuel economy event, particularly with drivers known more for their skill at driving at maximum speed on the track rather than conserving fuel, but Holden New Zealand Manager of Public Relations, Aalbert van Ham, explains all:

“Modern large-engined, low-stressed cars can most certainly be frugal on fuel when driven with care and on a light throttle,” said Mr. van Ham. “Although Commodore V8’s image is that of affordable high performance, we think that this event is a great opportunity to show that the performance potential doesn’t necessarily have to come at the cost of fuel use or social responsibility. And as New Zealand’s best selling car for the last two years and the most popular one again in this one, the Commodore entry is also very reflective of marketplace reality.”

Holden New Zealand believes that Murphy (winner of all three rounds at the 2001 Pukekohe V8 meeting) and Richards will not only bring a lot of interest to the EnergyWise Rally but will also put up a surprisingly good performance relative to a number of cars with much smaller engines.


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