WITH 21 starts in the Bathurst 1000 Garth Tander ranks as one of the most experienced men on the Supercars grid this year, yet the Great Race is still a challenge he is passionate about.
Tander's first two attempts at the 161-lap epic resulted in DNFs, but it was third time lucky as he won alongside Jason Bargwanna in 2000.
Tander has posted two more Bathurst victories since then - in 2009 and 2011 - and this year will chase another when he partners Shane van Gisbergen in the #97 Red Bull Commodore.
It would be a result he would cherish given the high prestige of winning the Bathurst 1000.
"This is still the race in this half of the world, there is no getting away from that, and we are seeing that more and more now with a lot of the international teams that are in the series on a full-time basis are understanding how big a race Bathurst is," the 42-year-old said.
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"We are seeing international drivers coming down and wanting to be part of the race, the wildcard cars with American drivers being in it this year. It is still very much one of the marquee motor sport events in the world and we're very fortunate to have that in Australia.
"I've been fortunate to have had success there in the past, so this is a fantastic opportunity to add another number to my success rate up there."
As well as his three wins, Tander has also placed third twice. Van Gisbergen has one podium from his 12 starts - a second in 2016.