The Royal Australian Navy’s partnership with high-performance motor racing raced into its sixth year with a new batch of technical sailors posting into the Prodrive Racing Australia garage.
The purpose of the partnership is to provide three technical sailors with industry experience in the cutting edge and high pressure environment of motor racing, whilst living and working as members of the Prodrive support team.
Prodrive Team Manager Chris O’Toole said there were direct parallels between the work of a Supercar team and Navy’s technical sailors.
“The sailors bring a fantastic work ethic and their level of experience and discipline is a credit to the Navy. These are key parts of a successful race team,” He said.
This year's participants are Able Seaman Electronics Technician Mark Richards [a great motor racing name!], Able Seaman Aviation Technician Aircraft Tenae Drummond and Leading Seaman Marine Technician Jeremy Rupnik.
“It's like the ultimate work experience placement; one right in the middle of all the action.” Leading Seaman Rupnik said.
Marketing Director of Ford Performance Racing, Peter Trevaskis, said that the partnership had value on both sides.
“This is the sixth year of a program that delivers us ongoing strategic benefits,” he said.
“The sailors are an integral part of our team and a significant contribution to our success.”
The team take over from Able Seaman Avionics Technician Aircraft Aaron Armbruster, Leading Seaman Marine Technician Dale Tiyce-Nelson and Able Seaman Electronics Technician Kyle Best, who will be returning to the Fleet with a whole new set of skills and plenty of stories.
Able Seaman Best said a highlight was seeing driver Garry Jacobson win the Dunlop Series Championship after working on his vehicle.
“It was really hard work, long hours and at times a roller coaster, but most importantly we got a lot out of it,” Able Seaman Best said.
“I would definitely recommend it to anyone. I've had a once in a lifetime experience and made some really great friends along the way.”