15 Aug 2018
Ford will return to Supercars racing in 2019 and the Adelaide 500 played a part in helping reignite the Blue Oval’s passion for Australian motorsport.
According to supercars.com, when global director of Ford Performance Mark Rushbrook attended the 2017 Adelaide 500, his experience of Supercars at Australia’s biggest domestic motorsport event contributed to Ford recommitting to the championship.
While at the Adelaide 500, Rushbrook was able to understand first-hand the status of Supercars in Australia, and the relevance of the Ford brand.
As was announced earlier this year, Ford will re-enter Supercars with the homologation of its Mustang performance car for the 2019 series.
“We’re proud to announce that Ford Australia, with our Ford Performance global team, is working with DJR Team Penske and Tickford Racing to homologate Mustang for 2019,” Ford Australia president and chief executive Graeme Whickman said at the time.
Team Penske president Tim Cindric was also key in the move, ensuring that the historical blue-versus-red legacy would continue.
It’s a rivalry that is a mainstay feature of Australia's premiere Supercars race.
“To be able to run a Mustang – not just here [in Australia] – but to be able to run that iconic brand now in the NASCAR Cup Series, as well as Xfinity, and have a fleet of three different types of Mustangs, it’s really cool.” Cindric told supercars.com.
While the North Carolina headquarters for Team Penske won't have direct involvement with the development of the Mustangs, Ford Performance’s Computational Fluid Dynamics expertise and DJR Team Penske’s Ludo Lacroix-led engineering group will lead the project for the Supercars entry.
The 2019 Supercars grid should see the arrival of seven Mustangs, and will be an exciting headline feature of the Adelaide 500.
The 2019 Adelaide 500 takes place from 28 February – 3 March. Tickets will go on sale later in 2018.