Promoter And Bathurst Council Work To Save 24 Hours
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BATHURST City Council and the organiser of the Bathurst 24-Hour
race are confident the international event will have a future.
Event founder Ross Palmer
has been in intense talks with Bathurst Mayor Councillor Kath Knowles
and senior Council officers this week to discuss the future of the
event, following the decision two weeks ago to cease the motor racing
operations of his company PROCAR Australia.
“Council is very
keen to see the race continue and is committed to working with Ross
Palmer and others to explore all options to see that this can happen,”
Cr Knowles said.
far have been very positive and I am hopeful that funding can be
found to see what has been a very successful event for the city
taken into its third year.”
Mr Palmer was equally
confident of the future of the event he created, particularly if
there was recognition from Government for the international profile
such a unique event brought to regional New South Wales.
Government has injected in excess of $25 million into the Grand
Prix, the South Australian Government has come to the party with
in excess of $3 million in support of Adelaide’s Clipsal 500
and in Queensland the Gold Coast Indy receives around $12 million
in support,” he said.
“The Bathurst 24-Hour
is a unique event not only for Bathurst but in Australia and there
is nothing like it run anywhere in the Southern Hemisphere.
“Last year the
event was broadcast to a worldwide audience in 100 countries and
attracted seven international teams, 15 international media outlets
- and that is only in the second year.
“There is no doubt
of the potential for this event to provide a significant boost to
the economy of regional NSW. The interest is there from high profile
Australian and international teams to continue to compete, but for
PROCAR it became unfeasible to continue to carry the $2 million
a year loss.”
Mr Palmer attributed
the financial drain to the hefty cost of television coverage and
difficulty in securing major sponsorship.