Sun Sets On Sydney Motorsport Park

'Big Bash' Push...

Sun Sets On Sydney Motorsport Park

Something secretive is happening in western Sydney tonight and it may well shape the future of Supercar racing in Australia.

Two Supercars will test under lights for 3 hours at Sydney Motorsport Park as the sport evaluates a night shift.

Parts of the track will be illuminated by temporary lights as plans come together for a "Big Bash" style of racing in 2018.

Shell V-Power Racing's Fabian Coulthard and Nissan Motorsport's Simona De Silvestro will do a series of runs in various lighting types in order to gather feedback for Supercars management.

It's been more than 20 years since Supercars last raced under lights in Australia, at Melbourne's Calder Park in 1997.

A number of twilight races have been run along with two night races at the fly-away Abu Dhabi event at the Yas Marina circuit in 2010 and 11.

Jamie Whincup blasts around a "lit" Yas Marina

Supercars CEO James Warburton is keen to get some intel on what's needed to package a "fast food" version of the sport that could be run mid-week and in prime-time.

“We want to create something unique and we are always looking to innovate and grow the sport,” he said.

“The runaway success of the Big Bash has shown people are looking for new, short forms of sporting entertainment, without necessarily taking away the traditions of the sport," he said.

“It (a Supercars 'Big Bash') will be a maximum of a three-hour event in 2018, it will count for championship points and most likely we will be looking to run the event on a Thursday night."

Lights, Camera, (James) Courtney

Supercars' head honcho says they're close to flicking the (light) switch on night racing - which could expand to other circuits on the calendar if tonight's runs in Sydney are a success.

“At this stage it’s all conceptual but if the test is successful we want it in the schedule for 2018 and beyond.”

For those needing a reminder of what night racing on Aussie soil looked like in 1997, check out the video - complete with the late great Peter Brock - below.


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