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Where reborn V8 Touring Cars sits in Supercars landscape

IT has been dubbed the new equivalent of Super4, but where does the Kumho V8 Touring Car Series sit as far as the Australian Racing Group is concerned?

“It’s an interesting question,” ARG chief operating officer Liam Curkpatrick told V8 Sleuth on the eve of Round 1 this weekend at Phillip Island.

“I’ve heard that (Super4) term a few times. I know it was talked about in Perth a bit in the Super2 field.

“To be honest about it, I think the plan is to just let it grow organically.

“I think we present it for the best place to race for everyone, in terms of keeping it affordable, offering good track time, good formats, good management, et cetera.

“So it is not specifically targeted one way. I think we have put together a class structure that it aims towards the privateers and the gentlemen driver but you can see there’s still that strong interest from the teams with young people wanting to learn to race a Supercar.”

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The original Kumho Series blended into Supercars’ own feeder system in 2019, becoming Super3 – and then run as a class alongside Super2 within the Dunlop Series from 2020.

Super3 has remained, with V8 Touring Cars now relaunched separately as part of the ARG/Shannons SpeedSeries suite for all pre-Car of the Future Supercars. Project Blueprint-specification VE II Commodores and FG Falcons are also still eligible to race in Super3 as well as V8TC.

There’ll be five rounds this year, the last of which will come at the Bathurst International in November.

The car which Jamie Tilley is racing. Pic: Supplied

“Our move with Supercars the last few years was out of necessity to I guess help each other, which worked,” Curkpatrick said.

“But essentially the platform is angled towards the development series kids et cetera so it probably didn’t give the opportunity for some of the car owners that are out to just have a bit of fun or the ones that are playing their golf game.

“To bring it back really opens it up again for that.”

The Kumho Series is dear to Curkpatrick’s heart, him having been involving since it began in 2008 with a four-car field at Mallala.

“Kumho were instrumental in helping us set the series up early days so it’s sort of like bringing the band back together,” he said.

“From a personal side of things, being involved with it since 2008, it’s pleasing to see it in its old form.

“The numbers side of things, while we’re a bit down for the first round, some of those guys haven’t run their cars for four or five years, so everyone had got good intentions to get them out for the first one but it just hasn’t seemed to happen.

“A few were close and they won’t be far away.”

Opening practice at Phillip Island is due to get underway this morning at 9:55am AEST.

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