Thus sayeth the PR
"Hollywood rev-head Eric Bana today joined the Shell Helix Racing team as its official patron for the 2003 season.
Eric will attend selected rounds this year, beginning this weekend at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide, and will take an active role within the team over the race weekend.
Born and bred in Melbourne, Eric has been a fan of V8 Supercars, and in particular, Dick Johnson Racing, for many years.
"As a kid, Dick Johnson was my hero…. and to now be part of undoubtedly Australia's premier motorsport team is an absolute honour," Eric said.
"You won't catch me sipping Chardonnay with the corporates on race weekend, I'll be in the pits with the boys cleaning tyres!," he joked.
No stranger to life in the fast lane having driven in Targa Tasmania and the Adelaide Classic, Bana is genuinely excited at the prospect of spending his free time this year at the track with the Shell Helix Racing team.
"A few years ago I was lucky enough to have a stomach-twisting ride with Dick in the EL around Sandown and it gave me a real taste for the sport…I can't wait to feel that again in the new Shell Helix Racing BA Falcon."
Shell Helix Racing owner Dick Johnson reciprocated the praise.
"Normally associations between Hollywood stars and race teams is limited to the glitzy world of F1 and Indy Car, it's a credit to Eric that even after his new found star status, he hasn't forgotten where he's from."
"I've been a fan of Eric's from the days of 'Full Frontal'…I just wish
we had him around the team last year because we certainly could have used his sense of humour in the pits after some of our more forgettable rounds," Dick mused."