Supercar team smash record to keep star man
BATHURST winner David Reynolds has landed a long contract to rival AFL champion Lance Franklin after signing a monster 10-year deal to stay with Erebus Motorsport.
In a history-making agreement that will tie the Holden driver to the Melbourne-based team for the rest of his Supercars career, Reynolds has locked in his future at Erebus until the end of 2029.
Slamming the door on speculation about his future, 34-year-old Reynolds will be 44 when his deal with the team expires.
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Reynolds' decade-long deal is the longest signed in Supercars and represents a serious commitment from the team and driver.
The length rivals some other record-breaking sports deals, including the nine-year contract Franklin signed to join the Sydney Swans in 2013.
Having held a reputation as the Supercars joker, Reynolds is laughing after securing the lucrative deal with the Betty Klimenko-owned team.
Reynolds said there had never been any doubt in his mind that he wanted to stay at Erebus long-term.
"I never really had any other thoughts than to stay where I was." Reynolds said.
"I've always said to everyone that I have found the best home and the best life for me in Erebus. I've never enjoyed my sport so much as I have with this team, so for me there is no other choice - I have to stay for as long as I can and a 10-year deal makes it icing on the cake.
"Sure we have ups and downs like any other team, but we work together. We are a small-knit team.
"With Betty and myself … there is a saying I heard a few weeks ago and it's you play long term games with long-term people and she is a long-term person. I am a super-loyal person myself.
"Back when I (first) signed they weren't a very good team and we have all grown together … we have grown into one of the best teams in pit lane. I'm here for the long haul."
Reynolds is in his fourth season with Erebus Motorsport after joining the Holden outfit in 2016.
He claimed a memorable Bathurst win in 2017 with Luke Youlden and currently sits sixth in this year's championship.
Erebus Motorsport will have an unchanged driver line up for 2020 after the announcement of young gun Anton De Pasquale's contract extension with the team in July.
Erebus co-owner Barry Ryan said the team wanted to build around Reynolds for the next decade and did not expect his racing skills to slide in that time.
"He's at the top of his game most of the time and he's got at least 10 years left in him," Ryan said.
"He's good with young guys as well like Anton so you can build the team around him. Even if he loses some speed in the fine couple of years which I don't think he will, he is still going to be a good mentor for the young guys.
"Betty and Dave always spoke about how he's going to be here forever and he doesn't want to go anywhere else and it just came down to 'Why don't we just make it forever?'"