HOLDEN heroes don't come much bigger than V8 Supercars driver Garth Tander, but a certain blue-badged rival played a big part in his formative years.
The veteran driver and his brother travelled to karting events across Ford back seats when growing up, but it's been Holdens practically ever since.
Husband to fellow racer Leanne and dad to Scarlett and Sebastian, this family man still has some tasty toys of his own in the garage.
An ideal candidate then for our searching motoring questions.
What was your first car?
It was a six-cylinder 1980 VB Commodore which was already pretty old when I bought it as a 17-year-old. I'd just moved out of karts and was racing cars for the first time, so couldn't afford the petrol to be a lout in it.
What are you driving now?
I've got an HSV GTS as a company car which is one of the perks of the job. It's a fantastic car, so good to drive and it's a positive and a negative how much it stands out from the crowd.
I also have a 1969 Chevrolet Camaro. I love that era of muscle car and the Camaro has a beautiful shape. It's my Sunday cruiser.
What cars did your family have while you were growing up?
Dad was a Ford man, and having two boys racing karts he owned station wagons to cart us around. We had XR6s and XR8s, so there was always performance.
What is your greatest frustration on the road?
People sitting in the outside lane of the motorway that never pull back over.
Do you have any preferred driving music?
Anything with a good tune really. But I've kind of lost control of the audio system these days with having two kids. We listen to a lot of Wiggles music.
If you were to pick anyone in the world to go on a road trip, who would it be?
If not the wife and kids, it would have to be someone really interesting in the motoring world. Roger Penske (American race team owning billionaire) would be ideal.
What would be your dream car if money were no object?
I've always said my dream car would be a Ferrari, and it'd have to be red. One of the latest front-engined two-seaters would be great thanks (we'll offer Garth a 6.3-litre V12 Ferrari F12).
Who: Garth Tander.
Born: March 31, 1977; Perth.
Resume: Learning his trade in karts, Garth had won seven Western Australian state karting titles and a national title by age 17.
After winning the 1997 Australian Formula Ford title, his V8 Supercars career began in 1998 at age 21, winning the Championship in 2007 with the HSV Dealer Team.
He is fourth on the all-time championship race winners list with 53 V8 Supercars race wins to his name, and has scored three Bathurst 1000 victories. Garth currently sits 7th in this year's championship.
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