Bathurst Is Go!
While reporting on one great 24 hour race, the marvellous news arrives
that another is secure for November: the third annual Bathurst 24-Hour
motor race will go ahead at Mount Panorama on 19-21 November, following
an agreement between event founder PROCAR Australia and the Bathurst
The race is again expected
to attract a big field of GT sports cars and touring cars from Australia
Organisers are due to
invite entries in the next few weeks, once the 2004 event regulations
have been finalised.
Meanwhile, PROCAR representatives
will be in Germany this weekend to contact potential entrants at
the Nurburgring 24-hour race, on which the Australian endurance
event is modelled.
Bathurst 24-Hour competitors
will be among the first to take advantage of a new pit and paddock
area, currently being built as stage one of a $24 million redevelopment
of the historic Mount Panorama public road circuit.
The agreement to stage
the Bathurst 24-Hour, confirmed yesterday, could see the newly-created
Regional Council step up its role from controlling the circuit hire
to becoming the event coordinator.
The Council, an amalgamation
of the former Bathurst City and Evans Shire Councils, currently
is preparing budgets for the event including a determination on
the most viable television broadcast option.
Bathurst Regional Council
Administrator Kath Knowles said the Council and PROCAR “have
come together to sort out a list of priorities to ensure the event
has every opportunity of success.
High on the list is working
out a beneficial broadcasting arrangement and that will be crucial
to the outcome of a successful event,” Ms Knowles said.
PROCAR Chairman Ross
Palmer, whose idea it was to create Australia’s version of
the famous 24-hour races at Le Mans, Daytona and the Nurburgring,
said he was delighted the event would continue under the guidance
of the Bathurst Regional Council.
“The Bathurst 24-Hour
has enormous potential not only as a motor race, but also as a significant
boost to tourism and economic growth in the New South Wales central
west,” Palmer said.
with these benefits in store and major infrastructure investment
under way that the Council should take a greater role.
“I have every confidence
the third Bathurst 24-Hour will be the best yet.”
The Mount Panorama pit
and paddock area was levelled immediately after last year’s
24-Hour and contractors now are making good progress on the new
Over the next week, construction
up to the first floor above all 36 pit garages will be completed.
part of this construction is that while it may look far from complete
on the outside, an incredible amount of work has now been done on
major electrical and telecommunication systems,” Ms Knowles
over $1.3 million in underground electrical and over $1 million
in hydraulic and fire systems have been installed, bringing the
new complex up to current international safety standards."
This was the
scene three weeks ago.