JAMES McFadden will roll out in the new Hodges Motorsport sprintcar for the first time in Max's Race.
It will mark the World of Outlaws driver's homecoming on Australian soil after a jam-packed season in the United States.
McFadden, who has teamed up with Warrnambool-born Tim Hodges, said he was excited to challenge himself in a new set-up in preparation for the 50th South West Conveyancing Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic in late January.
Max's Race, scheduled for Saturday, December 17, will mark Premier Speedway's 2022-23 season-opener after two washed out meetings in November.
"It should be fun. It's different car owners and a unique bunch of car owners which is really good for the sport," McFadden told The Standard.
"I think it's really going to open some eyes to some new people for the sport. I am excited to get back on track and whip around Warrnambool."
McFadden, who races upwards of 90 meetings a year, said he would target Victorian-based races during his Australian stint before returning to America on February 5 - just two days before the World of Outlaws' campaign kicks off.
"We'll play it by ear but we'll do as many races through speedweek as we can and hopefully come out of that looking OK, do the Vic title and the week leading into the classic," he said.
"It fits my program pretty good - I don't have to travel and I can relax a little bit at the same time."
Hodges Motorsport's ownership features Warrnambool-raised TV producer Tim Hodges, Australian broadcaster Gerard Whateley, AFL footballer Jack Riewoldt and Indycar driver Scott McLaughlin.
McFadden said Riewoldt - a three-time Richmond premiership player - would face a challenge teaching him how to kick a football properly.
"I think it would be easier to teach him how to drive," he joked.
"Hopefully I can get him into a car and if not I'll get him into a two-seater and give him a few laps in that and show him what it's all about and see if I can scare him a bit.
"He will be down here for the (classic) race and for him to be a part of it is really cool."
Hodges approached McFadden about racing for the new team and he embraced the opportunity.
"He came to America and I saw him at one of the World of Outlaws' races when he was there to see Scott in the Indy 500," he said.
"We caught up then and a month later he asked if I was doing anything this year and it all fitted quite well.
"He has a big passion for racing and the Warrnambool classic and Warrnambool itself. It was a no-brainer for me to come onboard."
The former classic winner hopes to take winning form back to the US.
A hard-marker, McFadden was disappointed with his 2022 campaign despite a top-10 finish and one win on the circuit.
"To be honest, it was pretty average. It was probably the hardest year of my career," he said.
"I just couldn't do anything right. I felt everything I did was a zig instead of a zag.
"We had the speed and ability to win five, six or seven races and we didn't. We had driver errors and mechanical failures. It's a cut-throat industry and when you don't perform, it's pretty easy not to have a job. To have the chance to have another crack at it is pretty cool."
McFadden, who travelled across America in a motor-home with with wife Zoe and son Maverick, said Toyota was jumping onboard to help Roth Motorsport - his World of Outlaws team - in 2023.
"We are their only factory team so it will be an exciting thing. They are a new brand into the sport and they succeed at everything they do," he said.