Jamie Whincup has described Craig Lowndes an “unbelievable” mentor of young drivers, following the deal which will take him into a third decade at Triple Eight Race Engineering.
For the last three years now, the Supercheap Auto-backed wildcard entry has been a combination of youth and experience, initially Broc Feeney and Russell Ingall, then Declan Fraser and Lowndes in 2022.
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Fraser would eventually land a full-time seat in the Supercars Championship while Zane Goddard, the younger half of this year's wildcard duo, is hoping to regain one in 2024.
“Lowndesy is obviously a huge part of Triple Eight's DNA, and for him to continue his legacy with the team into a 20th year and beyond is truly remarkable,” said Whincup, Triple Eight's Team Principal.
“I've personally shared so many memories with Craig, highlighted by our Bathurst 1000 three-peat which I'll cherish forever.
“We wouldn't be where we are now without his contribution to the team and the sport as a whole.
“Lowndesy's worth is just as valuable off the track as it is on it.
“His mentorship of the youth in our sport, as we've seen from the success of our Supercheap Auto Racing wildcard program over the past two years, has been unbelievable.
“For these young guns to have someone of Lowndesy's calibre by their side sharing his racecraft and experience is something they can only dream of.”
Whincup has personally felt the impact which Lowndes can have on a young driver's career.
He was 23 years old, with just two seasons of full-time Supercars competition under his belt, when he arrived at Triple Eight in 2006.
They won that year's Bathurst 1000 together, as well as those of 2007 and 2008, with Whincup clinching his first of a record seven championship titles in the months after the Great Race three-peat was achieved.
In addition to Lowndes' new deal, Triple Eight also recently announced the re-signing of Supercheap Auto, the major sponsor of its wildcard car.
Pre-enduro testing takes place next month, with the Penrite Oil Sandown 500 beginning on September 15.