NZ Touring Cars is putting the prestigious Jason Richards Memorial Trophy up for grabs at the inaugural TA2 Trans-Tasman Challenge.
The Trans-Tasman Series features eight cars from Australia going up against eight from New Zealand, with the first of two rounds beginning this weekend at Ruapuna.
The series will then head south to race at Highlands Motorsport Park in Cromwell in support of the New Zealand Grand Prix.
Richards participated in the last true Trans-Tasman Challenge in 2006, sharing a V8 Ute with Gary Baxter in the inaugural V8 Utes International at Manfeild.
He was a highly-regarded driver in New Zealand and Australia through an attraction to V8 Touring Cars, which became evident over an impressive career record that included three New Zealand Touring Car Championships and success in the Australian V8 Supercars Series.
With Trans-Tasman bragging rights on the line, the Jason Richards Memorial Trophy adds a further competitive element to the series, featuring the first-ever standalone TA2 grid in New Zealand.
“We feel it’s quite fitting to recognise the true spirit of Jason’s Motorsport career in both Australia and New Zealand by allowing this prestigious trophy to be awarded to the Australian or New Zealand Team with the most points over the two-round series,” a spokesperson for the series commented in a media release shared with Velocity News.
“The winning Team will get to hold the Trophy for 12 Months in recognition of the efforts.”
This weekend’s track action begins with practice outings on Friday, followed by Qualifying at 10.38 am on Saturday and Race 1 at 1.54 pm. Sunday brings two further races, the first at 10.27 am and the finale at 2.08 pm.
Saturday and Sunday’s coverage will be broadcast live on Sky Sport.
Header Image: Neville Bailey