Morgan Tait

Morgan Tait is the NZ Herald's consumer affairs reporter.

$40m in V8 gear arriving in giant airlift

More than 300 team personnel will arrive in the country on separate flights. Photo / Supplied
More than 300 team personnel will arrive in the country on separate flights. Photo / Supplied

When more than 200 tonnes and $40 million of V8 Supercars touch down in purpose-built aircraft at Auckland International Airport it will be one of the largest airlifts in New Zealand sporting history.

Two 747-400 aircraft are due to arrive from Melbourne tonight and tomorrow morning, carrying 32 cars, containers of support gear and spare engines, gear boxes and 784 wheels.

More than 300 team personnel will also arrive in the country on separate flights, said ITM400 V8 Supercars media manager Ian Hepenstall.

Team New Zealand's use of a Russian freight plane to take their boat abroad was the only other effort he could think of that was bigger.

"It's a very impressive operation and very slick," he said.

The cargo was travelling from Hobart - where it was used in racing last week - by truck and by ferry before being flown to Auckland. Once it touched down it would be lifted on to trucks and taken to the newly refurbished Pukekohe Park Raceway.

"When the teams arrive they are all sitting outside their garages and they're ready to go, it's a really fine-tuned operation now."

This weekend's races are one of the country's biggest annual sport events and are being held at Pukekohe for the first time in six years.

Precious cargo

*28 V8 Supercars will be flown from Melbourne in two 747-400 aircraft.
*Each aircraft carries more than 100 tonnes of cargo worth more than $40 million - including cars worth more than $450,000 each, with $150,000 engines.
*Purpose-built containers to hold support gear including engines, gear boxes and 784 wheels.
*More than 300 team personnel will also arrive this week.

- NZ Herald

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