Martin Devlin: Motorsport will survive Holden's departure

Author
Martin Devlin,
Publish Date
Wed, 19 Feb 2020, 1:54PM

Martin Devlin: Motorsport will survive Holden's departure

Author
Martin Devlin,
Publish Date
Wed, 19 Feb 2020, 1:54PM

It's the biggest disaster to hit motor racing since they first made F1 cars sound like sewing machines. Or is it?

News that Holden is exiting Australia has sent shockwaves through Supercars with much of the initial reaction from fans  and sponsors being a fear for the future of this iconic series.

Me, I don't think it'll cause nearly as much long term angst and interruption as is being (potentially) anticipated. And that's because like most sports, the V8s via continuous evolvement over the decades, is now less about the two most famous manufacturing marques  and more to do with the individual drivers.

Well that's certainly the perception this side of the Tasman anyway. And yes, I do fully understand that across the ditch sentiments are probably quite different. In fact the olde Ocker tradition of Ford's Ferals vs Holden's Hoons high up on Bathurst Hill is as sacred a part of Australian sport as the Adelaide Oval. And long may it continue. And long I think it will.

The one constant thing about sport, like life, is change. Twenty years ago the biggest rivalry in English football was, believe it or not Man Utd vs Arsenal. It's true. These two teams totally dominated the Epl winning all nine titles between 1996 and 2004. Twenty years later and both struggle to make the Top 4.

My question being, has the removal of this rivalry killed the competition? Hardly. And the same will happen with Supercars.

Providing those same Holden-powered teams can maintain the same financial backing they currently enjoy, be it from Holden's US parent company or similar such sources, then the racing will continue as per without barely a ripple. As long as Scotty and the Giz are kicking Whincup & Reynolds butt nothing much will actually change.

Out in the carpark is where you'll get most of the grumbling as old foes rev their own engines for the traditional post-match race home to the western suburbs. The biggest problem for Supercars is making sure the marketing twats and promotional prats don't try to bastardise the sport by introducing contrived new rivalries.

Second issue being that the size and engine class is maintained. The success of this series is because of the gaz-guzzling piston-thumping ear-splitting V8s.

They lose those, that's when they kill the Great Race backing is considered .