Jason won three New Zealand touring car championships prior to moving into V8 Supercars and is best remembered for three times finishing second at the Bathurst 1000 — in 2005 with current V8 Supercar champion Jamie Whincup, in 2008 with fellow Kiwi Greg Murphy and in 2009 with Cameron McConville. It seemed only a matter of time before he’d go ahead and win the ‘‘great race’’.
But his racing career came to an abrupt halt in November last year when doctors told him he had an adrenocortical carcinoma. He immediately stepped down from driving for the Brad Jones Racing team to focus on his health. There were a few guest drives in supporting series, including one memorable day on the streets of Adelaide when JR won the main support race to rapturous applause from Holden and Ford fans alike, briefly united behind a greater cause.
It gave his fans hope that he could beat the tumour or at least keep it in check long enough to return to full-time racing for a while. It wasn’t to be. He is survived by his wife Charlotte and his two young daughters, Sienna and Olivia.