MSR hits back at Ford, confirms Chevrolet future

A Chevy Camaro Truck Assist. Rendering: Nick Moss Design

Matt Stone Racing has taken a turn at Ford while confirming that he will stick with General Motors when Supercars enter the Gen3 era next year.

The eponymous team boss of Team Yatala is the son of Jimmy Stone, who co-managed the Stone Brothers Racing team that won three consecutive Supercars Championships with the Blue Oval in the 2000s.

MSR let it be known last year that it was considering a return to Ford, with which it debuted in the main game in 2018.

When Walkinshaw Andretti United’s defection to Ford was confirmed last week, questions again arose over whether MSR would follow suit.

However, that was quickly put to bed, with Speedcafe.com announcing that there would be no more teams fielding the Mustangs next season.

This was accompanied by a jab that Ford is “about quality over quantity” and that “we’re here to win, not invent numbers”.

Speaking of MSR’s future, Matt Stone made a point of saying his organization isn’t here to be equally rancid either, while saving a clip for Ford to explain why General Motors was its preferred option.

“There were many factors that had to be weighed like any major decision in any business,” Stone said.

“MSR is not in Supercars to simply make up the numbers as we have shown with our continuous improvement and results.

“We are here to win, and the quality of our key partnerships is essential to achieving this objective.

“Being a racing team, the overall performance of the car was of course at the top of our list, and we have no doubt that the Chevy Racing Camaro will be a great package to win races with.

“We are also impressed with the leadership and support of Triple Eight, which Ford does not offer.”

MSR is currently a Triple Eight customer team and has moved up the pecking order this year to seventh in the Teams Championship – ahead of Team 18 and Brad Jones Racing.

Jack Le Brocq put the Truck Assist-supported team on the front row of the grid at Symmons Plains, while team-mate Todd Hazelwood hovered near the top 10 in the championship.

Next year will be Matt Stone Racing’s sixth in the Supercars Championship. Rendering: Nick Moss Design

Chevrolet Racing General Manager Chris Payne hailed MSR’s renewed commitment, which led to him ordering three Gen3 Camaros.

“We are thrilled to have Matt Stone Racing aboard the Chevrolet Racing Camaro for Gen3,” Payne said.

“Matt and the MSR team have demonstrated a strong commitment to the GM product at all levels of competition, and we are delighted to be working with them as we enter this exciting new era.”

Stone confirmed that they will also be fielding GM cars in Super2 and Super3 going forward, which is up to seven entries across all three Supercar tiers.

“Our factory operates three different racing divisions, Supercars, Supports and Special Projects,” he said.

“These three areas are currently in full expansion and it is essential that we have the best possible partners in each area.

“For us, knowing what we have planned for the future, GM and Chevy Racing were the obvious choice for us.

“When we entered Supercars just over four years ago we had around 10 employees, now we have 35. Things are developing well and the team is improving all the time.

“The hardest part of this decision was knowing that we have a lot of fans who wanted to see the Stone family come back racing with Ford.

“We spoke with GM and Ford about this decision for over a year and we thank them both for the time and effort put into these discussions, but in the end it was clear to us that the team GM and Chevrolet Racing were more aligned with our goals and we with their goals, which is key to any relationship.

“Chris Payne, Steve Byrne and the GM Design and Racing Division team in the US are doing a great job with Gen3 and have very exciting plans for the future.

“We look forward to supporting the guys at GMSV and Chevrolet Racing in any way we can. GM has always played an important role in racing in Australia, and we want that to continue and flourish in the future.”

The 11 teams currently competing in Supercars are now officially committed to either marque for 2023, with five from Ford and six from Chevrolet.

Hazelwood and Le Brocq are both under contract at MSR until the end of next season.

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