THE Grove Group will take full ownership of Kelly Grove Racing at the conclusion of the 2021 Repco Supercars Championship, ending the Kelly brothers’ stint as team owners.
Kelly Racing was formed in 2009 and became Kelly Grove Racing at the start of this year, when the Stephen Grove-led Grove Group took an initial 50 percent stake.
“Racing has been our life since (brother) Rick, and I were around eight years old,” explained Todd Kelly, who won Bathurst in 2005 with the Holden Racing Team.
“We have been very fortunate to have been part of the premier category in the country for such a long period.
“Being part of such an intense business is something that I will genuinely miss. But now is the time to hand over the reins to Stephen and Brenton Grove.”
V8 Sleuth’s Aaron Noonan and Stefan Bartholomaeus analyse the sale in Repco Supercars Weekly – listen in the player below!
While the Grove Group will take over the race team, Kelly Racing will retain the engineering side of the business, with the Supercars squad among its customers.
“Kelly Racing will retain full ownership of the team CNC machine shop, the engine department and all production departments as well as the current Mustangs,” explained Todd.
“I will still be working hard in the background in 2022 to continue maintaining and developing the current package for the team.”
Kelly Racing started life as a Holden team, taking over cars, equipment and staff from Perkins Engineering at the beginning of 2009.
The full history of every PE-built Commodore, include those campaigned by Kelly Racing, features in our upcoming book ‘Perkins Engineering: The Cars, 1986-2008’.
Kelly Racing switched to Nissan Altimas in 2013 under a factory-backed deal that coincided with the implementation of the Car of the Future regulations.
Todd retired from driving at the end of 2017 to focus on team management, while brother Rick stepped back at the end of 2020; the squad’s first season running Ford Mustangs.
“Over the years, we have done an incredible amount of engineering and manufacturing work initially with the Holden’s then the design and production of the Nissan Altima and Nissan VK50 quad-cam Supercar engine and then again with the conversion to Mustang,” said Todd.
“We have always had pride in doing everything in house ourselves and doing the best possible job of designing and producing our equipment.
“Although we have achieved quite a lot through sheer hard work, the biggest challenge we have had over the years has been the resources to take it to the big teams.
“I’m genuinely excited to watch the team grow with the firepower and resources of the Groves behind it.”
Rick, who stepped back from the team this year alongside his retirement from driving, thanked members of the team and its fans for their support.
“I’m excited for what the future holds for the team as the Grove’s take it into the future,” said Rick Kelly.
”I have appreciated working with such a great bunch of guys and girls, building many great working relationships and friendships along the way.
“I want to thank each and every team member, both current and those who have worked with us along the way, for their efforts and dedication shown towards Todd, myself, and our team.
“I’m very grateful for my time in Supercars, both as a driver and team owner.
“Through this time, I had the chance to be a part of many great things both on the track and off and have learnt so much which I believe will position me well in attacking future projects in other industries.
“I’d like to thank our fans and supporters for being a part of the journey with us, and I look forward to continuing that relationship and sharing my future ventures and projects.”
Added Stephen Grove: “It is an honour to continue the journey of Kelly Grove Racing and to build upon the foundations built by Todd and Rick.
“Grove Motorsport look forward to taking the mantle forward and competing at the highest level of Australian Motorsport.
“I’d like to thank Todd and Rick for their commitment and contribution in building Kelly Grove Racing to what it is today, and appreciate their trust in Grove Motorsport to take the team to the next level.”