The John McIntyre Racing #556 Ford FG V8 SuperTourer driven by Steven Richards has a smart, new livery ready for the first of three endurance race events starting on 1 September.
Evolving from the car's previous CRC branding, the new CRC motornews.co.nz imagery looks fantastic, according to team owner and winner of the first-ever V8 SuperTourer sprint championship John McIntyre.
"We established a fantastic relationship with the team from CRC during the four-round sprint championship," says McIntyre from the team's Taupo workshop where preparation work on both Ford V8 SuperTourers are progressing well for the opening endurance event, the Father's Day 400, at the Ricoh Taupo Motorsport Park.
"The New Zealand-owned and hosted website motornews.co.nz has recently been re-launched," McIntyre adds. "CRC is a key backer behind this site which shares an incredible array of news for Kiwi motorsport fans. I'm delighted that JMR has the opportunity to be linked with such a positive initiative for motorsport enthusiasts."
Jeff Bennet, general manager of the site, says: "Motornews.co.nz is still in its launch phase, so this is a very timely opportunity for us to promote the site via the championship-winning team to the thousands of V8 SuperTourer fans who will follow the action for the remainder of the season.
"The JMR V8 SuperTourer branding which I think looks terrific – very contemporary – is certainly a special promotion for us and not something we would expect to be able to do very often."
Bennet highlights the existing links between motornews.co.nz and JMR via Jono Lester who is co-driving for John McIntyre in the endurance races.
"Jono Lester is a major contributor to motornews.co.nz and his involvement in the sport frequently provides fresh opportunities. It's still early days with the site but we are very pleased with the reaction from motorsport fans as we build toward being the premier motorsport website for New Zealand fans."
With both JMR cars having finished every single race of the first four rounds, the team aims to build on that level of consistency and performance as they prepare for the two 60-lap races on their home circuit.
Teenage race champion William (Will) Bamber is joining Richards in the #556 CRC motornews.co.nz Ford for the Taupo event and McIntyre rates the combination a strong one.
"Steve is a two-time Bathurst winner so obviously brings vast knowledge of the endurance format to share with Will, who's one of New Zealand's most talented young drivers," says ‘Johnny Mac'.
Bamber, originally from Whanganui and now based in Auckland, enjoyed working with CRC and JMR at July's CRC Speedshow where the #556 car was on display.
"We had my name on the car for the first time and we had posters featuring Steve and me, so our combination was definitely put forward to the public," says the 18-year-old former Suzuki Swift Cup champion. "From all the people we had through the car over the weekend, everyone seemed excited to see what Steve and I can do at the Father's Day 400."
Bamber has been working hard on his own preparation with personal training, running and further training at the high performance-oriented AUT Millennium Institute. "Over the last few months I have stepped up my training programme to ensure I am in the best possible shape for those brutal 45 minute stints powering the JMR Ford around the 3.3 kilometre Taupo circuit."
The Father's Day 400 event sees JMR join fellow V8 SuperTourer competitors for promotional activities in downtown Taupo on Friday 31 August, before Saturday's two 60 minute practice sessions and two 20 minute qualifying sessions – one for the co-driver and one for the main driver. Sunday's schedule sees the first 60 lap race start at 11:25 am and the second 60 lapper at 1:45 pm.
The endurance series continues at Pukekohe on 27 and 28 October and wraps up at Ruapuna in Christchurch on 24 and 25 November.
More details about McIntyre and his team can be found on www.jmr.co.nz