Dream run fuels Ellery's drive for gold - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dream run fuels Ellery's drive for gold

By Laine Clark 24/10/2003 05:42:00 AM Comments (0)

Once the butt of jokes in V8 Supercars, Ford battler Steve Ellery now hopes to have the last laugh on his high profile rivals and complete a "dream" turnaround with another upset at this weekend's V8 Supercars Challenge at Surfers Paradise.

Gold Coast-based Ellery, 29, was once dismissed as a "V8 Supercar nobody" by a Melbourne newspaper as his one car team - boasting just eight full-time crew - battled to keep its head above water financially against cashed-up opposition.

What a difference six weeks makes.

Armed with podium finishes at two of the most recent - and biggest - V8 Supercar races, Ellery is now sitting pretty after not only re-signing a sponsorship deal with the aptly named Super Cheap Autos but also renewing official Ford backing.

Ellery's small team is primed for big business after receiving a three-year deal from the motor accessory company while Ford will kick in with extra funding and technical support.

Ellery is now the man to watch at this weekend's V8 Supercar Challenge - sharing equal billing with the CART Indy 300 for the first time - after placing second at the Sandown 500 and the Bathurst 1000 recently with Luke Youlden.

"The last six weeks for the team have been amazing. Who would have thought six weeks ago we would have got second at Sandown, third at Bathurst and re-signed our sponsorship?" an ecstatic Ellery asked.

"We were really looking down the barrel at one stage, it was very tough to ensure we had an existence.

"There was a lot of (negative) talk about single car teams..and that motivated us to prove people wrong.

"I even started to doubt my own ability...but I've got a taste of the champagne, I liked it, and I am hungry for more.

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