Sydney Motorsport Park

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Sydney Motorsport Park
Sydney Motorsport Park Brabham.png
Location Eastern Creek, New South Wales
Time zone GMT+10
Coordinates 33°48′15″S 150°52′14″E / 33.80417°S 150.87056°E / -33.80417; 150.87056Coordinates: 33°48′15″S 150°52′14″E / 33.80417°S 150.87056°E / -33.80417; 150.87056
Operator Australian Racing Drivers Club
Opened 10 November 1990
Major events Australian motorcycle Grand Prix
A1 Grand Prix
International V8 Supercars Championship
Muscle Car Masters
World Time Attack
Brabham Circuit (Extended Circuit)
Length 4.5 km (2.8 mi)
Turns 18
Lap record 1:50.2739 (Bryan Sala, Matich A50, 2012, Formula 5000)
Gardner Circuit (Grand Prix Circuit)
Length 3.93 km (2.44 mi)
Turns 11
Lap record 1:19.1420 (Nico Hülkenberg, A1GP Lola Zytek, 2007, A1 Grand Prix)
Druitt Circuit (North Circuit)
Length 2.800 km (1.740 mi)
Turns 8
Lap record 0:59.6077 (Chris Farrell, Swift 014, 2012, Formula Atlantic)
Amaroo Circuit (South Circuit)
Length 1.8 km (1.12 mi)
Turns 13
Lap record 0:53.3600 (Nick Kelly, Radical SRS, 2013, LeMans Sports)

Sydney Motorsport Park (formerly known as Eastern Creek International Raceway) is a motorsport circuit located on Brabham Drive, Eastern Creek (40-kilometres west of the Sydney CBD),[1] New South Wales, Australia, adjacent to the Western Sydney International Dragway. It was built and is owned by the New South Wales Government and is operated by the Australian Racing Drivers Club. The circuit is the only permanent track in Australia with an FIA Grade 2 International license[2] and is licensed for both cars and motorcycles.

History[edit]

The development of Sydney Motorsport Park was approved in 1989[3] and construction began soon after. However, construction was delayed by poor weather and debates over land ownership. A test race open to Superbikes was held in July 1990 and the circuit was officially opened by then-New South Wales Minister for Sport Bob Rowland-Smith on 10 November 1990. In 1991, the consortium formed to fund the circuit suffered financial problems and the complex was purchased by the New South Wales Government.[4] The pit facilities provide fifty garages with direct access to the paddock area and a covered 4,000-seat grandstand overlooks the finish line, providing a view of the majority of the circuit. Events are held at the circuit on most weekends during the year.[2]

On 11 August 2006, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that Ron Dickson, the A1 Grand Prix circuit designer who also designed the Surfers Paradise Street Circuit, suggested that Sydney Motorsport Park was not up to modern standards and needed to be upgraded.[5] On 28 April 2008, it was announced that Apex Circuit Design Ltd. had been commissioned to perform a $350,000 feasibility study on upgrading the track to suit more purposes and hold larger events such as the Australian Formula One Grand Prix,[6] however nothing came of this proposed upgrade.

In early 2011, Sydney Motorsport Park received funding for a $9 million upgrade, with the New South Wales Government providing $7 million and the Australian Racing Drivers Club funding the other $2 million.[7] The upgrade reconfigured the circuit into four layouts, with two able to be operated at the same time, with a total length of 4.5 kilometres. The upgrade also included an additional pit lane facility to cater for the new configuration, a new race control tower and new amenities buildings.[2] Work on the upgrades began in June 2011, with a new piece of road joining turns four and nine.[8] This link road, finished in October 2011, created the new "Druitt Circuit", also known as the North Circuit.[9] The 830-metre extension on the south-eastern part of the circuit was completed in May 2012 to create the new "Amaroo Circuit" (or South Circuit). On 21 May 2012, the circuit was renamed from Eastern Creek International Raceway to Sydney Motorsport Park.[10] Construction of the new pit lane between turns four and five also began at this time.

Configurations[edit]

Brabham (Extended) Circuit
Gardner (Grand Prix) Circuit
Druitt (North) Circuit
Amaroo (South) Circuit


Major events[edit]

The turn one spectator hill.
The race control building and the main pit lane.
The secondary pit lane constructed for the South Circuit. The main pit lane and grandstand can be seen in the background.

Motorcycling[edit]

After the first Australian motorcycle Grand Prix held at Phillip Island in 1989, there was a conflict over advertising between the Victorian Government and the tobacco industry, who were major sponsors of the Grand Prix teams. The New South Wales Government saw this as an opportunity to bring the race to Sydney and, in October 1990, a deal was made for the Grand Prix to be held at Sydney Motorsport Park from 1991 to 1993. The race remained at the circuit until 1996 before returning to Phillip Island in 1997.[4]

The circuit has also hosted rounds of the Australian Superbike Championship.

Australian motorcycle Grand Prix winners[edit]

Year 125 cc 250 cc 500 cc
1991 Italy Loris Capirossi Italy Luca Cadalora United States Wayne Rainey
1992 Germany Ralf Waldmann Italy Luca Cadalora Australia Michael Doohan
1993 Germany Dirk Raudies Japan Tetsuya Harada United States Kevin Schwantz
1994 Japan Kazuto Sakata Italy Max Biaggi United States John Kocinski
1995 Japan Haruchika Aoki Germany Ralf Waldmann Australia Michael Doohan
1996 Australia Garry McCoy Italy Max Biaggi Italy Loris Capirossi

A1 Grand Prix[edit]

The Australian round of the A1 Grand Prix championship was held at Sydney Motorsport Park from the 2005–06 season to the 2007–08 season. During the 2006–07 event on 4 February 2007, German driver Nico Hülkenberg set the outright lap record for the original circuit layout with a 1:19.142 lap time in the A1 Team Germany prepared Lola-Zytek.[11]

A1 Grand Prix winners[edit]

Year Driver Car Entrant
2005-06 France Nicolas Lapierre Lola-Zytek A1 Team France
France Nicolas Lapierre Lola-Zytek A1 Team France
2006-07 Germany Nico Hülkenberg Lola-Zytek A1 Team Germany
Germany Nico Hülkenberg Lola-Zytek A1 Team Germany
2007-08 France Loïc Duval Lola-Zytek A1 Team France
South Africa Adrian Zaugg Lola-Zytek A1 Team South Africa

V8 Supercars[edit]

A V8 Supercar race in 2008

Sydney Motorsport Park first hosted a round of the Australian Touring Car Championship (now known as V8 Supercars) in 1992 and held a round every year, excluding 1998 and 2006, until 2008. The circuit hosted the V8 Supercars Grand Finale in 2003 and 2004, with Marcos Ambrose winning on both occasions.[12] In 2009 the circuit was dropped in favour of a new event at Sydney Olympic Park.[13] The circuit returned to the V8 Supercars calendar in 2012 after V8 Supercars failed to secure a second international event.[14]

The official pre-season V8 Supercar test day was held at Sydney Motorsport Park in 2011[14] and 2013. The 2013 test day was the first time that the four Car of the Future manufacturers appeared together at a public event.[15]

In the 1990s, the circuit hosted the Winfield Triple Challenge, an event which featured ATCC teams and drivers alongside Superbikes and drag racing.

ATCC / V8 Supercar round winners[edit]

Year Driver Car Entrant
Group A
1992 Australia John Bowe Ford Sierra RS500 Shell Untra-Hi Racing
Group 3A Touring Cars
1993 Australia Glenn Seton Ford EB Falcon Peter Jackson Racing
1994 Australia Peter Brock Holden VP Commodore Holden Racing Team
1995 Australia Mark Skaife Holden VR Commodore Winfield Racing Team
1996 Australia Craig Lowndes Holden VR Commodore Holden Racing Team
1997 Australia Glenn Seton Ford EL Falcon Ford Credit Racing
V8 Supercars
1999 Australia Mark Skaife Holden VT Commodore Holden Racing Team
2000 Australia Mark Skaife Holden VX Commodore Holden Racing Team
2001 Australia Mark Skaife Holden VX Commodore Holden Racing Team
2002 Australia Mark Skaife Holden VX Commodore Holden Racing Team
2003* Australia Marcos Ambrose Ford BA Falcon Stone Brothers Racing
2003* Australia Marcos Ambrose Ford BA Falcon Stone Brothers Racing
2004* Australia Rick Kelly Holden VY Commodore K-mart Racing Team
2004* Australia Marcos Ambrose Ford BA Falcon Stone Brothers Racing
2005 Australia Craig Lowndes Ford BA Falcon Triple Eight Race Engineering
2007 Australia Mark Skaife Holden VE Commodore Holden Racing Team
2008 Australia Will Davison Ford BF Falcon Dick Johnson Racing
2012 Australia Craig Lowndes Holden VE Commodore Triple Eight Race Engineering
2014 New Zealand Shane Van Gisbergen Holden VF Commodore Tekno Autosports

* Sydney Motorsport Park hosted two rounds of the 2003 and 2004 V8 Supercar Championship Series.

Muscle Car Masters[edit]

Muscle Car Masters is held on Father's Day every year. The event includes races and demonstration laps featuring Australian muscle cars and ex-race cars from the 1950s to the 1990s. Regular racing classes include Group N, Group C, Group A and Touring Car Masters while different car clubs have their cars on display each year and take part in demonstration laps. Historically significant cars in Australian motorsport are also present and complete laps of the circuit. While the main focus is on the history of Australian touring car racing, other classes, such as Formula 5000, have also appeared.

Music[edit]

In the 1990s, Sydney Motorsport Park held a number of rock concerts and music festivals including Guns N' Roses, Bon Jovi, Pearl Jam, the Alternative Nation festival and the Colossus 2 dance festival.[2] Music festivals returned to the circuit in 2009 and 2010 when it hosted the Soundwave Festival for both years.[16]

Lap records[edit]

Formula One driver Daniel Ricciardo drove a Red Bull Racing RB7 Formula One car during the Top Gear Festival at the circuit in March 2014 and set a time of 1:11.2330. However, as this time was not recorded during a race, it does not count as a lap record.[17]

Records as of 2 September 2014.

Class Driver Vehicle Time Date
Outright Germany Nico Hülkenberg Lola A1GP Zytek 1:19.1420 4 February 2007
Racing Cars
A1GP Germany Nico Hülkenberg Lola A1GP Zytek 1:19.1420 4 February 2007
Formula Holden Australia Tim Leahey Reynard 92D Holden 1:22.5131 26 March 2000
Formula Three Australia Nick Foster Mygale M08 Mercedes-Benz 1:22.6290 13 July 2013
Formula Libre/Historic Australia Ty Hanger Ralt RT4 Ford 1:27.6786 5 November 2005
Superkarts Australia Russell Jamieson Anderson Maverick DEA 1:28.1409 23 March 2013
Formula Two Australia Arthur Abrahams Cheetah Mk.8 Volkswagen 1:29.3500 25 August 1991
Formula Ford Australia Jack Le Brocq Mygale SJ11a Ford 1:35.3251 16 July 2011
Formula Ford Kent Australia Rob Storey Spirit WL07 Ford 1:38.9196 22 September 2007
Formula Vee 1600 Australia Mitchel Martin Sabre 02 1:46.7250 26 August 2012
Formula Vee 1200 Australia Jay Hall Jacer Volkswagen 1:50.9297 25 September 2005
Sports Cars
Radical Australia Cup United Kingdom James Winslow Radical SR8 1:25.7027 14 July 2013
Supersports/Sports Racer Australia Adam Proctor Stohr WF1 1:26.7160 13 July 2014
GT Sports Cars Australia Jack Le Brocq Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 1:27.9783 14 July 2013
Production Sports Denmark Allan Simonsen Lamborghini Gallardo LP560 GT3 1:28.0570 28 May 2011
Porsche GT3 Cup Australia Richard Muscat Porsche 997 GT3 Cup 1:33.5503 14 July 2013
Nations Cup Australia Paul Stokell Lamborghini Diablo GTR 1:33.5918 18 July 2004
Carrera Cup New Zealand Steven Richards Porsche 996 GT3 Cup 1:30.9042 24 August 2014
Clubman Sports Australia Chris Barry PRB Clubman 1:38.7875 23 June 2002
Aussie Racing Cars Australia David Sieders Falcon-Yamaha 1:43.5824 11 June 2007
Historic Sports Cars
Group Sc Australia Geoff Morgan Porsche 911 Carrera 1:46.9261 30 May 2010
Group Sb Australia Tony Dains Triumph TR6 1:51.7191 28 May 2011
Group Sa Australia Peter Jackson Austin-Healey 3000 MkI 1:51.8841 28 May 2011
Touring Cars
Time Attack Australia Garth Walden Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 1:24.8550 18 October 2013
Sports Sedan Australia Tony Ricciardello Alfa Romeo GTV-Chevrolet 1:28.9391 15 July 2012
V8 Supercar Australia Garth Tander Holden VE Commodore 1:30.9123 26 August 2012
Super Touring Australia Cameron McLean BMW 320i 1:33.8642 7 June 1998
Group A* Australia John Bowe Ford Sierra RS500 1:36.21 5 June 1992
Improved Production Australia Ray Hislop Ford BF Falcon 1:40.7119 26 August 2012
Italian Challenge Australia Andrew Leithhead Alfa Romeo GTV6 1:44.2082 24 June 2001
Commodore Cup Australia Tony Bates Holden VS Commodore 1:44.8247 17 July 2011
Group 3E Australia Bob Pearson Mazda RX-7 1:46.4351 7 November 2004
Saloon Cars Australia Shawn Jamieson Holden VT Commodore 1:47.5126 17 July 2011
V8 Utes Australia Grant Johnson Holden Ute VZ SS 1:50.4062 26 November 2006
HQ Holden Australia Greg King HQ Holden 1:58.4667 7 December 1997
Historic Touring Cars
Central Muscle Cars New Zealand Jason Richards Chevrolet Camaro 1:41.5119 6 September 2009
Group A* Australia Terry Ashwood Nissan Skyline GT-R 1:41.8511 4 September 2010
Touring Car Masters Australia John Bowe Ford Mustang Trans-Am 1:41.2736 24 August 2014
Group C New Zealand Jason Richards Holden Torana A9X 1:43.0145 4 September 2011
Group Nc Australia Ross Donnelley Ford Mustang 1:46.0209 28 November 2003
Group Nb Australia Bill Trengrove Ford Mustang 1.50.5692 4 September 2011
Group Na Australia Craig Stephenson Holden FJ 2:11.2755 22 June 2003
Motorcycles
500cc Grand Prix Spain Àlex Crivillé Honda NSR500 1.30.360 20 October 1996
Superbike Australia Jamie Stauffer Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R 1.31.655 9 April 2006
250cc Grand Prix Italy Max Biaggi Aprilia RSV 250 1.32.080 20 October 1996
Formula Xtreme Australia Kevin Curtain Yamaha R1 1.32.657 4 October 2003
Supersport Australia Jamie Stauffer Yamaha R6 1.33.989 18 February 2007
125cc Grand Prix Japan Haruchika Aoki Honda RS125R 1.36.270 20 October 1996
Sidecar United Kingdom Steve Abbott/United Kingdom Jamie Biggs LCR-Suzuki GSX-R1000 1.37.420 1 May 2005

* John Bowe's time was set during the 1992 Australian Touring Car Championship, when the ATCC was in its final year of Group A regulations. Terry Ashwood's time was set during the 2010 Muscle Car Masters.

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Visitor Information – How to Get Here". Sydney Motorsport Park. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  2. ^ a b c d "About the Park". Sydney Motorsport Park. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  3. ^ "History". Western Sydney Parklands. Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  4. ^ a b Sharpe, Alan (2 February 2002). Pictorial History: Blacktown and District. Blacktown, NSW: Kingsclear Books Pty Ltd. p. 34. ISBN 0-908272-64-2. 
  5. ^ "Race for street circuit may become endurance event". drive.com.au. 11 August 2006. Retrieved 2009-05-03. "But A1GP track designer Ron Dickson, who created the Surfers Paradise Indy track, says money needs to be spent on Eastern Creek to bring it in line with today's standards." 
  6. ^ "Eastern Creek International Raceway". Apex Circuit Design. Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  7. ^ Barnett, Josh (29 January 2011). "New South Wales government to provide $7 million upgrade to Eastern Creek International Raceway". Fox Sports News. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  8. ^ "Work begins on Eastern Creek upgrade". SpeedCafe. 28 June 2011. Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  9. ^ "Video: New Eastern Creek North circuit". SpeedCafe. 27 October 2011. Retrieved 2011-10-27. 
  10. ^ "Eastern Creek renamed Sydney Motorsport Park". SpeedCafe. 21 May 2012. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  11. ^ Hall, Sam (24 January 2013). "Webber shoots for Sydney lap record". The Standard. Retrieved 2013-02-20. 
  12. ^ "Ambrose dominates for title triumph". theage.com.au. 5 December 2004. Retrieved 2013-02-20. 
  13. ^ Brenden Hills (30 September 2008). "Homebush to host V8 Supercar race". Cumberland Courier. Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  14. ^ a b "Eastern Creek added to 2012 V8 Supercars calendar". SpeedCafe. 22 April 2012. Retrieved 2013-02-20. 
  15. ^ "V8 Supercars announces 2013 championship calendar". SpeedCafe. 15 October 2012. Retrieved 2013-02-20. 
  16. ^ "Soundwave 2010". last.fm. Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  17. ^ "Ricciardo destroys Sydney lap record". SpeedCafe. 9 March 2014. Retrieved 9 March 2014.