Lowndes and Historic Holden Head to Europe

Australian motor sport superstar Craig Lowndes has farewelled the 1951 Holden he will drive in next year’s Monte Carlo Historic Rally.

Lowndes and co-drivers Richard Davison and Gary Poole will re-enact the very first international motor sport activity by an Australian car and team, in 1953, when they contest the event in early 2013.

Davison, son of original driver Lex Davison, will share duties behind the wheel of the accurate recreation of his father’s original Holden 48-215, with multiple Bathurst winner Lowndes and project leader, Gary Poole.

Hon Terry Mulder, Victorian Transport Minister and trio farewelled the car, together with Gibson Freight’s Bill Gibson, along with the project’s Holden Commodore SV Sportswagon support vehicle, provided by Callaghan Motors of Warrnambool.

Both cars are being shipped by Gibson freight to Southampton in the UK, after which they’ll be driven to the official start of the event in Glasgow, Scotland.

The Australian trio will join 300 other classic cars and drivers heading over the snow capped French Alps into Monte Carlo.

“Seeing the cars off today make the event very real now, after months of talking about it and planning,” an excited Craig Lowndes said.

“You can’t underestimate what an amazing effort it was for Lex Davison, Stan Jones and Tony Gaze to take the first produced Australian car to Monte Carlo in 1953, and run competitively.

“I am delighted to be able to honour their achievement and mark the 60th anniversary.”

Tony Gaze, the only surviving member of the original crew, is patron of the 2013 re-enactment, while official support also comes from the Australian Embassy in Paris and Australia’s Ambassador from Monaco, Catherine Fautrier.

The 2013 Monte Carlo Historic Rally will run from 25 January to 1 February 2013.