Craig Lowndes, Australia’s most popular racing driver will turn high-speed chauffeur in Tony Quinn’s $4.3 million Aston Martin Vulcan at the Hampton Downs 101 next weekend (October 28-30). Lowndes adds to an already stellar lineup for the festival of motorsport at the North Waikato track headlined by the cars and drivers of the Australian GT Championship.

It’s the first major event at the refurbished Hampton Downs track, following a $30m investment by new owner Tony Quinn. Quinn has hosted the Highlands 101 at Highlands Motorsport Park in Cromwell since 2013. Lowndes competed in the Highlands 101 in 2014, finishing fifth in a Chevrolet Camaro GT3 with Southland racing driver Inky Tulloch.

“The Highlands 101 was one of the best events I’ve been to and I can’t wait to drive the new Hampton Downs track,” Craig Lowndes said. “I’m honoured that Tony Quinn is trusting me to drive his Aston Martin Vulcan. I know there’s only 24 of them in the world so I better make sure I get it back to the pits in one piece! I can’t wait to put it through its paces.”

Some of the GT marques that will race 101 laps at Hampton Downs include: Audi, Aston Martin, Ferrari, McLaren, Lamborghini, Mercedes, Porsche and BMW. Over the years, the calibre of the cars has tempted a number of leading Supercar drivers to compete in the Highlands 101 including Shane van Gisbergen, Fabian Coulthard and Craig Lowndes to drive. Klark Quinn, Tony’s son, teamed up with van Gisbergen to win last year’s Highlands 101 in a thrilling finish.

This year, Greg Murphy will team up with Tony Quinn in the Aston Martin Vantage V12 GT3 at Hampton Downs while New Zealand drifting superstar ‘Mad Mike’ Whiddett will make his circuit racing debut alongside Klark Quinn.

Other classes that will feature as part of the festival of motorsport include the Central Muscle Cars, GTRNZ and the Aussie Racing Cars. Off the track at Hampton Downs there will also be live entertainment, a family fun zone with lots of children’s activities, top notch food and drink stands and a chance to go for a ride in a supercar with a superstar.

Everyone who buys a ticket for the Hampton Downs 101 before Friday, October 28 goes in the draw to win a hot lap.

October 20, 2016

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