Auckland Street race to rival Adelaide
May 20 2004
Auckland Street race to rival Adelaide as New Zealand’s biggest sporting event
Auckland will host New Zealand’s largest annual sporting event when the V8 Supercar Championship Series hits the inner city streets in 2006.
Australian Vee Eight Supercar Company (AVESCO) Chairman Tony Cochrane today announced that Auckland had secured the 2006 event ahead of an extremely impressive submission by a consortium from Manfeild near Palmerston North.
“There is no doubt Auckland is the premium street location for a race of this kind,” Mr Cochrane said.
“At the end of the day Auckland offered the best in terms of logistics, the appeal of a street circuit format, worldwide television audiences, media facilities, spectator comfort and viewing, world class accommodation and easy access to an international airport.”
An anticipated 170,000 people are expected to attend the first event in 2006.
“We expect that this event can ultimately rival what has been achieved at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide where 238,000 people watched the first championship round of this year,” Mr Cochrane said.
“I’m supremely confident the New Zealand event can become one of the world’s greatest street races and deliver Auckland directly into 500 million homes across the world and a global television audience of more than 100 million people on race day.”
The race will literally be held through the heart of Auckland. The start finish line and pit lane is located beside Victoria Park that will also host race control, administration, corporate facilities, family attractions and merchandising areas.
From there the circuit runs past the Auckland viaduct, up to Sky City Casino and back down to Victoria Park. The track is 2.6km long with an extremely fast back straight. More than 10,000 grandstand seats will be available as well as ample viewing areas and large screen televisions throughout the circuit.
“It will be similar to the Gold Coast circuit that hosts the V8 Supercar Championship Series and Indy, in that it is centrally located in a major capital city,” Mr Cochrane said.
“We know that crowds of 300,000 attend the Gold Coast event with a major proportion, seven out of 10 as research shows, of those people there specifically for the V8 Supercars.
“Auckland has the potential to mirror those events in New Zealand. It will be a week long party that will provide Auckland and New Zealand with a massive economic boost.”
IMGs involvement will ensure the event has the support of a world class promoter that will manage the race. IMG has a global track record in events such as the Sydney Olympics and the Rugby World Cup.
It has a wealth of experience and expertise in the management of international events.
Mr Cochrane said AVESCO were highly impressed with the Manfeild bid.
“Manfeild made this decision extremely difficult because their proposal was simply exceptional. We will continue to hold positive discussions with the Manawatu bid team and will make an announcement on their future in the next two months.’’
Mr Cochrane said AVESCO would consider a second round of the V8 Supercar Series in New Zealand from 2009.