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HomeNewsBathurstWhat happened to the D'Arcy Russell Nations Cup Viper?

What happened to the D’Arcy Russell Nations Cup Viper?

THE Dodge Viper GTS ACR Nations Cup race car that competed in the hands of D’Arcy Russell has re-emerged from private storage to form part of a special ‘Chrysler in Australian Motorsport’ exhibition currently featuring at the National Motor Racing Museum at Mount Panorama, Bathurst.

The Russell Viper, placed on display in the Museum recently, has been up on blocks and not seen in public since its last race in the Australian GT Championship in 2008.

The limited run production car was one of two of its kind purchased for the new Nations Cup Series run by PROCAR Australia that started in 2000 and spun out of the GT-P category.

Russell and Rusty French each purchased one of the cars, which were heavily developed in the areas of engine, suspension and aerodynamics.

The Viper at the 2001 Sandown 500. The Melbourne endurance race was revived that year for cars from the PROCAR Nations Cup and GT-P. Photo: an1images.com / Dirk Klynsmith.

The former’s familiar red Viper appeared in 2001 and finished sixth in that year’s Nations Cup in addition to setting the fastest lap in the Sandown 500.

Russell raced the car in the following years of Nations Cup before the category was disbanded at the end of the 2004 season.

However, he and the Viper raced on into the new era of the Australian GT Championship and the combination won the Phillip Island round in 2006, the same year that Greg Crick won the championship in another Viper.

The move to GT3 regulations for the local GT Championship opened the door to a range of newer machinery, however the Russell Viper continued appearing in the class, eventually making its last start at Albert Park in 2008 at the Australian Grand Prix.

The Russell Viper as it now sits in the National Motor Racing Museum. Photo: an1images.com

The Nations Cup Viper is one of a range of interesting cars that make up the special ‘Chrysler in Australian Motorsport’ exhibition currently featuring at the National Motor Racing Museum.

Also on display as part of the exhibition is the ex-John McCormack Charger Sports Sedan, the Targa Tasmania-winning Viper of Jason and John White, an ex-Bathurst Charger E38 and much more.

The Chrysler in Australian Motorsport exhibition is a current feature of the National Motor Racing Museum. Photo: an1images.com
Russell’s Viper sits alongside the 2017 and 2018 Targa Tasmania-winning Viper ACR Extreme. Photo: an1images.com
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