TV STAR PERKINS-BUILT COMMODORE UP FOR AUCTION

The Chris Smerdon Holden Commodore that featured in the 'In the Pits' documentary is set to be auctioned. Pic: an1images.com / Graeme Neander

A PERKINS Engineering-built Holden that became an unlikely star of a documentary on V8 Supercars is set to be auctioned this weekend.

PE 020 was built for Chris Smerdon in 1994 and campaigned by the Adelaide-based privateer through to the end of the decade.

This car featured heavily in the ‘In The Pits’ documentary filmed around the tail end of the 1999 V8 Supercars season, which focused on four different teams and drivers at differing levels within the championship.

One of them was Smerdon, who famously told the story behind the ‘CDA Racing’ – which stood for ‘Captain Dick Around’ – team moniker that remains on the car to this day.

A current interior pic of PE 020 – note the ‘CDA Racing’ badge on the left side of the dashboard. Pic: Burns & Co

Smerdon claimed a Privateers Cup round win at Calder Park in 1998 (pictured above) while Tomas Mezera also piloted the car to privateers’ honours at the Phillip Island round earlier that season.

Its best result at Mount Panorama came in its first visit in 1994, where Smerdon was joined by Cameron McConville.

The full race history of the car is told in our recent book, Perkins Engineering: The Cars, 1986-2008.

The National Motor Racing Museum holds the last remaining stock of the highly collectable book – contact them on (02) 6332 1872 to secure a copy.

PE 020 was restored to the guise in which it tackled the 1998 FAI 1000 Classic at Bathurst. Pic: Burns & Co

The car became part of the ‘Supercar Experience’ ride program after the end of its racing career but was eventually returned to its 1998 Bathurst 1000 guise.

Melbourne-based mechanic Chris Spiteri purchased the car in 2015 and campaigned it at that year’s edition of the Adelaide Motorsport Festival; sadly, Spiteri passed away late in 2021 after a battle with cancer.

PE 020 is being auctioned by Burns & Co on Sunday 10 April.

Will Dale is V8 Sleuth's Head of Content - Digital. He began his media career as a breakfast radio newsreader before joining SPEED TV Australia and FOX SPORTS Australia in 2012 as its Digital Editorial Lead - Motorsport, covering all forms of motorsport both in Australia and internationally. He became part of the V8 Sleuth team in 2018.