Triple Eight Racing's Craig Lowndes has scored a unique double by winning the prestigious Barry Sheene Medal for the second successive year at the V8 Supercar Championship Series annual dinner at the Crown Casino in Melbourne tonight.
The ever popular Lowndes won the coveted Barry Sheene Medal for his outstanding leadership, personality, fan appeal and sportsmanship, putting aside the controversies of the end of the 2006 season at Phillip Island yesterday.
A team of panellists from the major metropolitan media, motorsport magazines and commentators voted at every round of the Championship to award the Barry Sheene Medal that honours the former Motorsport legend and V8 Supercar commentator.
V8 Supercars Australia Chairman Tony Cochrane congratulated Lowndes on his great achievements across the year that personifies the late Barry Sheene.
"Craig more than fits the bill for this award named after one of Australia's greatest motorsport identites," Mr Cochrane said.
"Craig, like the late Peter Brock who was also a personal mentor of his, is a people's driver. He personifies all what this sport is about - giving back to the fans and the people."
Lowndes battled for the Championship right to the end with Toll HSV's Rick Kelly.
The Courier Mail's Gordon Lomas won the V8 Supercars Australia Media Award for his outstanding coverage of the 2006 Series, including a weekly full page dedicated to the sport.
Stone Brothers Racing's James Courtney won the Mike Kable Rookie of the Year Award for his outstanding season that included a third in the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.
Racing great Jim Richards was inducted into the Hall of Fame while Ford won the manufacturer's title and the Toll HSV Dealer Team the Team's Championship.
Lowndes and his team-mate Jamie Whincup were also honoured for their Bathurst victory.
Howard Racing's Adam Macrow was duly recognised for winning the 2006 Fujitsu V8 Supercar Championship.
Bartercard Miss V8 Supercar Cherie Mitchell, a primary school teacher from Noosa in Queensland, was also introduced as the 2007 Face of the Series.
The Gala Dinner hosted the heavyweights of Australian Motorsport, V8 Supercar drivers, team owners, the V8 Supercars Australia Board, business identities, leading media and political dignitaries.
2005 V8 Supercar Championship Series Awards:
Privateers Cup Champion: Michael Caruso, Speed FX Racing
Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series Champion: Adam Macrow
V8 Supercars Australia Media Award: Gordon Lomas, Courier Mail
Best Volunteer Group: Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000
Event of the Year: Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000
Champion Manufacturer of the Year: Ford
Mike Kable Rookie of the Year: James Courtney, Stone Brothers Racing
Bathurst Champions: Craig Lowndes and Jamie Whincup
Armor All Pole Award: Mark Skaife, Holden Racing Team
Sidchrome Most Improved Award: Car 5, Ford Performance Racing
Champion Team of the Year: Toll HSV Dealer Team
Barry Sheene Medal: Craig Lowndes, Triple Eight Racing
Best Presented Team: Jack Daniel's Racing
Hall of Fame: Jim Richards
2006 Champion: Rick Kelly, Toll HSV Dealer Team
2006 runner-up: Craig Lowndes, Triple Eight Racing
2006 second runner-up: Mark Winterbottom, Ford Performance Racing