Team 18 has upped the ante in the Supercars transporter stakes, acquiring a new Australian-made Kenworth T909 prime mover to haul the IRWIN Racing and DEWALT Racing Commodores and equipment for the 2021 Repco Supercars Championship.
The Supercars are closely followed in popularity by the big rigs that haul the precious cargo all around Australia with the traditional truck parades a fan-favourite when the Supercars Championship fleet rolls into town.
The T909 is the flagship of the Kenworth range.
In Team 18’s case powered by a 600hp 15-litre Cummins X15 engine coupled with an Eaton 18-speed manual transmission.
It also has a number of distinctive external features including stainless-steel tank trims, 6.0” straight-cut twin stacks, extra roof lights, a custom bullbar and a host of personalised accessories ordered by Team 18 owner Charlie Schwerkolt.
Kenworth Australia has a longstanding partnership with Supercars, having recently celebrated its 20th anniversary as the official heavy vehicle supplier for the championship in 2020.
The brand also shares a long personal history with Schwerkolt, with more than 20 Kenworths currently running in his Waverley Forklifts transport fleet.
From home base in Melbourne, Team 18’s truck driver Mark Nelson will drive the T909 prime mover over 70,000km this year, pulling a B-double combination with over 50 tonnes of equipment to the 13 rounds across Australia, including through the red centre to Darwin and across the famous Nullarbor Plain to Perth.
Schwerkolt said it was an extremely special day when he took delivery of the new Kenworth T909 just in time for the first round of the Repco Supercars Championship at Bathurst’s iconic Mount Panorama circuit.
“It’s the ultimate truck! It’s the biggest truck you can get, the toughest-looking truck. It’s got heritage, style and class and it will be the envy of every team in the pit lane,” said Schwerkolt.
“In a race team image is everything. We take the presentation of our team very seriously as it reflects back on our drivers, our crew, our fans and our wider sponsor group.”
The truck transports over one million dollars’ worth of cars, plus another half a million dollars of spares and equipment to keep the team on track.
Whether travelling between Darwin and Townsville or across the Nullarbor Plain to Perth, reliability, performance and comfort are everything.
“I’ve had a long and successful association with Kenworth for many years as a sponsor of Team 18 and as a provider of trucks for my Waverley Forklifts group,” said Schwerkolt.
“I was so proud to have the opportunity drive the new T909 off the production line at Kenworth’s manufacturing plant in Bayswater and deliver it to Hallam Truck Centre for the final touches.
“Recently we’ve seen more teams bring Kenworths to the track and we’ve always had one, but now we have the best,” he said.
Kenworth/PACCAR Australia Director of Sales and Marketing, Brad May, said the company is very proud of its association with Team 18.
“The outstanding presentation and professionalism of the team led by Charlie is something that we believe fits with the values of our business extremely well,” said May.
“The cars look great in their 2021 livery and we believe it is only appropriate that they be transported by what is widely recognised as the ultimate drivers’ truck – the T909.
“Together with the Team 18 trailer set, the combination will surely be a standout in the paddock this year,” he said.