Team 18 has raised the bar in the Supercars transporter ranks, unveiling a brand new Australian-made Kenworth T909 prime mover to haul the IRWIN Racing and DEWALT Racing Commodores and equipment for the 2021 Repco Supercars Championship.
While the Supercars remain the greatest show on wheels, they are closely followed in popularity by the big rigs that haul the teams’ gear all across Australia, with the traditional truck parades a fan-favourite when the Supercars Championship fleet roll into town.
The Kenworth T909 is the ‘king of the road’ as the flagship model of the Kenworth range, powered by a 15 Litre Cummins X15 engine with an Eaton manual transmission.
Team 18’s T909 has a number of distinctive features including stainless tank trims, 6” straight-cut stacks, extra roof lights, a custom bull bar and a host of personalised accessories for team owner Charlie Schwerkolt.
Kenworth Australia has a longstanding partnership with Supercars as they celebrated their 20-year anniversary as the official heavy vehicle supplier for the championship in 2020. The brand also shares a long personal history with Schwerkolt, with over 20 Kenworths currently running in his Waverley Forklifts transport fleet.
From their 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 trailer 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.
Team 18’s 2021 campaign begins this weekend at Bathurst’s iconic Mount Panorama circuit, where IRWIN Racing’s Mark Winterbottom and DEWALT Racing’s Scott Pye will tackle two 250km sprint races to kick-off the Repco Supercars Championship.
All the action from the Mount Panorama 500 can be viewed live on the Seven Network, Fox Sports and Kayo.
Charlie Schwerkolt, Team Owner – Team 18/IRWIN Racing/DEWALT Racing
“It was an extremely special day on Saturday getting the delivery of our brand-new Kenworth T909 in time to head to Bathurst,” said Charlie Schwerkolt.
“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.
“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.
“We transport the cars all over Australia through some of the harshest conditions in the world, so it’s critical to have a reliable truck that can haul the load well and deliver our equipment to the next event on time, every time.
“We have over a million dollars’ worth of cars, plus another half a million dollars of spares and equipment to keep the team on track. Whether we’re going between Darwin and Townsville or across the Nullarbor Plain to Perth, reliability, performance and comfort is 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.
“I was so proud to have the opportunity drive it off the production line at Kenworth’s manufacturing plant in Bayswater and take it to their dealership at the 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.”
Brad May, Director of Sales and Marketing – Kenworth/PACCAR Australia
“Kenworth is proud of our association with Team 18. The professionalism and quality of the presentation of the team led by Charlie is something that we believe fits the values of our business extremely well,” said Brad May.
“The cars look great in their 2021 livery and so 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.”