IRWIN Industrial Tools, manufacturer and distributer of professional grade hand tool and power tool accessories, is underlining its commitment to building its brand via the V8 Supercar Championship Series with a two-year extension of its naming rights partnership of the Alex Davison #4 Ford Falcon from Stone Brothers Racing.
IRWIN has been involved in the V8 Supercar Championship Series as a naming rights sponsor since 2007 and has been with Stone Brothers Racing this year.
In making the announcement at today’s (Phillip) Island 300, IRWIN Industrial Tools Managing Director Nick Pritchard was joined by SBR co-owners Jimmy and Ross Stone, and Alex Davison in removing the IRWIN logo on the front bumper to reveal ‘2010 & ‘11’ during the pre-race grid walk.
“IRWIN Industrial Tools is delighted to extend its partnership with Jimmy, Ross, Alex and the entire Stone Brothers Racing team,” said Nick Pritchard.
“We have enjoyed our partnership in 2009 and we certainly believe there are some very exciting times ahead of us over the next two years.
“IRWIN Industrial Tools has quickly become a recognisable brand in the V8 Supercar Championship Series and it continues to grow our brand in the ultra-competitive building tool and accessory market.
“This deal allows us to focus our marketing around our racing program for a long period. This will be of enormous benefit to IRWIN as well as SBR and Alex.”
Ross Stone was pleased to secure the ongoing long-term support of IRWIN Industrial Tools well in advance of the end of the 2009 season.
“It is very pleasing to get the deal locked away and announced nice and early,” said Ross Stone.
“We might have been only working with each other for less than 12 months, but in that time we certainly have forged a very strong partnership.
“IRWIN has not only seen the value in V8 Supercars, but most importantly in the benefits of being in partnership with everyone at SBR.
“The IRWIN Racing team is set for a very exciting period over the next two years. Alex is a driver who has learnt a lot this year and I’m sure he will really shine over the coming two seasons.”
Alex Davison was wearing a big smile during the announcement.
“For me it is a huge vote of confidence,” said Davison.
“I can fully concentrate on my racing for the next two years and aim to reward IRWIN as well as everyone at SBR with top results.
“V8 Supercars is one of the most competitive motor sports series in the world. To be successful you need the best of everything. That is what we have in terms of people, machinery and the backing from IRWIN.
“We still have a job to do over the final three race meetings this year. It would be an excellent way to round-out the current IRWIN deal by scoring another excellent result by the end of 2009.”
What is IRWIN Industrial Tools?
IRWIN Industrial Tools manufactures and distributes professional grade hand tools and power tool accessories worldwide for trade professionals who demand superior performance and durability on the job.
IRWIN Industrial Tools' brand portfolio features user-preferred category leaders such as IRWIN®, Vise-Grip®, Marathon®, Quick-Grip®, Speedbor®, Strait-Line®, Unibit®, and Hanson®.
For over a century, innovation has been the hallmark of IRWIN Industrial Tools. Beginning in 1885, with the development of the first IRWIN Auger Bit, and progressing with the introduction of Vise-Grip Locking Tools, SPEEDBOR Flat Bits, MARATHON Saw Blades, and QUICK-GRIP Bar Clamps, IRWIN has been at the forefront of the industry, creating superior tools for the professional tradesman.
This impressive track record of new product development is born from the passion for understanding the needs of the primary user - the professional tradesman.
Who is Stone Brothers Racing?
Although Jimmy and Ross Stone only opened the doors to Stone Brothers Racing in 1998, their own involvement in professional motor racing dates back to the 1960s. The New Zealand brothers were always around cars and racing. Older brother Jimmy worked with New Zealand’s most famous racing identity, Bruce McLaren; whose name still dominates Formula 1 today. Jimmy was a key member of the McLaren Can Am sportscar operation and other projects before re-uniting with Ross as part of Dick Johnson Racing in the early 1990s.
In the 1970s Ross was a driver in Formula Ford and Formula Atlantics, before switching his attention to race car preparation where he worked with the likes of Formula 1 World Champion Alan Jones.
Jimmy and Ross were charged with the running of Dick Johnson Racing when the V8 Supercar era started in 1993. By 1994 they had won the title with John Bowe as well as a thrilling victory at Bathurst for Johnson and Bowe.
By 1998 Jimmy and Ross had gone it alone with a fresh-faced Jason Bright behind the wheel of the Pirtek Racing Falcon in 1998. Faith in that decision was paid off when Bright combined with Steven Richards for victory at Bathurst.
They moved to their current race shop in Yatala in Queensland in 1999; the addition of a second car with backing from Caltex would start to bring true rewards in 2003. Marcos Ambrose (Pirtek Racing) was the dominate driver over those three seasons, winning titles in 2003 and ’04, before finishing runner-up to teammate Russell Ingall (Caltex Racing) in 2005. This period would bring outstanding rewards for the Stone Brothers Racing organisation with championships for the drivers, the team and the Ford Motor Company.
Along the way Stone Brothers Racing introduced young star Mark Winterbottom to the series through sponsorship in Formula Ford and the V8 Supercar Development Series where he won the title. Stone Brothers Racing expanded its race engine division to supply other leading Ford teams with the renowned SBR power. This has included Triple Eight Race Engineering who has scored three-straight Bathurst victories and the 2008 driver’s title with Jamie Whincup.
One of only two operations to have backing from the Ford Motor Company in 2009, Stone Brothers Racing will enter the #4 IRWIN Racing FG Ford Falcon of Alex Davison and the #9 SP-Tools Racing FG of Shane van Gisbergen in the V8 Supercar championship series.
Who is Alex Davison?
Alex Davison is nearing the end of his first season aboard the IRWIN Racing Ford from Stone Brothers Racing . Alex is signed through to the end of the 2011 season, aligning with IRWIN Industrial Tools and the Ford Motor Company partnerships with Stone Brothers Racing.
The highlight of the 2009 for Davison was second place in the Sunday race at Darwin’s Hidden Valley Raceway.
Alex Davison is part of one of Australia’s most-famous racing families.
His late-grandfather Lex won the Australian Driver’s Championship and was a four-time Australian Grand Prix winner, in addition to international racing forays including the Le Mans 24 Hour.
Alex’s father Richard raced extensively between the late 1970s and early 1990s, while his brother Will is a rising star in V8 Supercars and his cousin James races in the American Indy Lights Series.
After success in karting, Alex stepped up to the Australian Formula Ford Championship, finishing second in 1999.
At the end of 1999, Alex was selected by Porsche to move to Europe on a junior driver scholarship, racing internationally with the manufacturer until 2003.
In that time, he competed in the German Carrera Cup and Porsche Michelin Supercup, scoring wins at the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Hockenheim and Sachsenring circuits, and visited the podium at Monza, Nurburgring and Hungaroring.
Davison’s efforts were recognised by the British Racing Drivers Club in 2002, when he was awarded the Bruce McLaren Trophy as the Commonwealth driver with the most-meritorious international racing achievements.
Alex returned home in 2004, winning Australian Carrera Cup Championship, and raced in the V8 Supercar Championship in 2005.
In addition to finishing second in the 2006 and 2007 Carrera Cup championships, Davison has impressed in V8 Supercar endurance races, scoring Top 10 finishes at Bathurst partnered with rookie drivers.
Alex moved to Germany in early 2008 and was employed as a Porsche-supported driver, contesting the European Le Mans Series. He won the Porsche Trophy as the best privateer performer aboard a Porsche anywhere in the word.