Less than a month after Repco announced they had secured naming rights for the Supercars Championship’s marquee event, the Bathurst 1000, the automotive parts and accessories retailer will take on the whole series sponsorship, replacing Virgin Australia.
In a five-year deal that was announced on 10 September, the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship will become the Repco Supercars Championship from next year.
The well-known brand (which despite its long Australian history, has been American owned since 2013) started to expand its presence and “synergy” with Australian and New Zealand motorsport in 2019, first as the Official Automotive Parts Retailer for the Supercars Championship, then sponsoring the Shell V-Power Racing Team and, most recently, signing naming rights deals for the Bathurst 1000 (for five years from 2021) and this year’s first SuperSprint round at The Bend on 19-20 September.
Over the next five years, Repco say they’ll be working with Supercars to roll out an “extensive marketing and activation campaign,” focused on engaging with motoring enthusiasts and Supercars fans across Australia and New Zealand.
“It’s an honour to become naming rights sponsors for the Supercars series for the next five years, and to have the opportunity to support Australasia’s premier racing series,” said Jamie Walton, Repco’s Executive General Manager of Merchandise and Strategic Marketing.
“One of the first things we want to do is engage directly with the fans and hear their thoughts on how we can take the Supercars Championship to a whole new level.”
Repco started in 1922 as the Replacement Parts Company and their first involvement with motorsport was in 1947. The brand gained global recognition when Jack Brabham and Ron Tauranac’s Motor Racing Developments partnered with the company to create the Repco V8-powered Brabham BT19 that delivered Jack the 1966 Formula 1 World Championship as both driver and constructor. Expect that local history to feature strongly in Repco’s future marketing and advertising.
Dick Johnson, five-time Australian Touring Car Champion and three-time Bathurst 1000 winner, has his own special history with Repco: “Before becoming a nasho, I worked for Repco myself, delivering parts and working behind the counter. Everything comes full circle in life, and it really does start with the parts.
“We’re certainly proud to partner Repco and to now see them take their passion and commitment for motorsport to the next level with naming rights of Supercars is very special indeed.”
Supercars CEO Sean Seamer added: “We are delighted to have a name that has been associated with Australian motorsport since the 1940s as our naming rights partner for the next five years.
“Repco has invested considerably in our sport and to carry their name as naming rights partner into a new chapter for our sport is great news for both parties.
“Repco is an iconic international motorsport brand with a proud history, and we are thrilled to extend our partnership with them.”
Seamer thanked Virgin Australia for its five-year reign as the category’s naming rights partner, adding that Virgin will remain the preferred airline partner for Supercars in the future.