BARRY Rogers has become a major shareholder in the Australian Racing Group, the company that runs a growing range of motorsport categories and events.
The son of Supercars Hall of Famer Garry Rogers, Barry’s company, Motorsport Events Pty. Ltd has acquired a 47.5% stake of Australian Racing Group Holdings Pty. Ltd, giving him the largest ownership share of the business.
ARG runs categories including TCR Australia, the yet-to-commence TCR New Zealand, S5000, Touring Car Masters, TransAm and V8 Touring Cars as well as the Bathurst 6 Hour and Bathurst International events.
It also recently confirmed it would work with Stephane Ratel’s SRO in administering the Motorsport Australia GT Championship in 2021.
Brian Boyd has divested his shareholding in the business with Rogers now owning the biggest stake.
Boyd’s nephew James, who is Executive Chairman of Paynter Dixon, holds 28.5%, McMellan has 19% and Seven West Media MD/CEO (and former Supercars CEO) James Warburton has a 5% shareholding.
Day-to-day operations of ARG and its categories and events will continue as-was under ARG CEO Matt Braid and shareholder John McMellan and staff including Operations Manager Ken Collier, General Manager of Commercial and Partnerships Nestora Strintzos and Category Manager Liam Curkpatrick.
A Board has been formed to oversee the company’s motorsport interests that includes the four shareholders. GRM TCR driver James Moffat has been appointed as a Board observer to bring a driver’s perspective to the table.
Rogers says the decision to become a shareholder of ARG is one that evolved over time, from Garry Rogers Motorsport first becoming involved with Brian Boyd as the constructor of the S5000 race cars.
“Everything has evolved from getting involved in the S5000 project with Bryan, into the TCR cars and so on from there,” Rogers told v8sleuth.com.au today.
“The driving factor is we love motor racing. I feel as though we’ve (GRM) got a lot to offer the industry. We’ve been involved as a competitor and also as a business and we feel we can help the business on the whole.
“The ARG business’ motivation is to get some categories together that are affordable to race in and competitors can maintain their involvement at a reasonable level and have a suitable set of rules that are well administrated rather than chopping and changing.
“As a group we’re trying to build a solid motorsport show with S5000, TCR, TCM, TransAm and now in recent times the addition of GTs. If you have got a strong, content competitor base, you’ll get good racing, you’ll attract fans, sponsors come on board, it all feeds from the base of having sustainability.
“Nothing changes from the team perspective. When we get to the race track my focus is on what is going on with GRM. At a race weekend I’ll have my team hat on and be in GRM mode.”
GRM will run seven TCR cars and three S5000s in next year’s series. There will be a pair of Alfas (for Michael Caruso and Jordan Cox), a pair of Renaults (for James Moffat and Dylan O’Keeffe) and a trio of Peugeots for Jason and Ben Bargwanna and Aaron Cameron.
The S5000s will be driven by James Golding, Luis Leeds and a to-be-announced driver.
Barry and father Garry have been heavily involved in putting together January’s double-header weekend at Symmons Plains and Baskerville in Tasmania that will kick off the 2021 season.
The ARG Festival of Motorsport will be held at Symmons Plains on January 24-26 featuring the opening round of TCR Australia, Touring Car Masters and TransAm with an event at Baskerville on January 29-31 featuring a $10,000-to-win TransAm Baskerville 10,000 and non-championship TCR races and S5000 demos.