V8 Supercar racer John Bowe is angry that a field of production-based cars contesting the Bathurst 24-hour race this weekend has to deal with a 7.0-litre Holden Monaro sports sedan (pictured), a car he claims is "way, way outside the spirit of the rules".
"The Monaro should win by miles," says Bowe, who will drive a $750,000 Ferrari 360GT in the first of what is expected to become an annual event on the calendar.
"Apart from the shell, there is not a single thing on that car that relates to the original Monaro," insists Bowe, who lists a 7.0-litre Corvette engine from a Le Mans racer, Holinger six-speed sequential gearbox, Ford differential and specially fabricated front and rear suspension.
"The road-car suspension has been scrapped in favour of a unique double-wishbone racing rear-end design manufactured by Harrop Engineering -- it's more a Harrop car than a Holden," says Bowe, who, we should point out, also works for Holden's arch rival Ford developing performance road cars.
"It has more power than a V8 supercar ... if it's not 10 seconds faster than the rest, it's a joke."
Bowe says he doesn't blame Holden for grabbing the opportunity to give the Monaro an image boost but wonders whether the punters will be fooled into believing that "this $1 million creation is really a $60,000 Monaro".
Bowe says that Procar, the organising body behind the 24-hour race, has bent over backwards to attract the Monaro beast into the event.
"It's wrong, but we're not taking our cricket bat home," he says. "We're going to Mount Panorama to do our best with a production-based car that meets the FIA regulations."