Texas Track Prepares to Host V8 Supercars

#15 Rick Kelly

A blessing and a curse of this connected world is there are fewer secrets remaining in the world. Decades ago, following motorsports relied on finding a source or publication highlighting a specific form of racing. In the United States, NASCAR Sprint Cup blossomed from a regional level into a national force with media sources deciding to profile the stock car series. Through the 1990s with expanded television sport coverage and later through the Internet other forms of regional motorsport around the world can be fully appreciated. The German DTM Series has been a recent organization observed to be booming worldwide with growing race coverage. The impact of DTM has led to the commitment for a similar series in the United States by as early as 2015. While there is a two-year wait for the DTM Series, Another international import is preparing for a maiden stop at the new Circuit of the Americas track in Texas this upcoming weekend.

From May 17th to the 19th, the American race fans will be offered the first chance to witness the Australian V8 Supercars Series in person. The 3.427-mile (5.515 kilometer) Circuit of the Americas hosting of the V8 Supercars comes a six months after a Formula 1 race christened the track.

For the inaugural Austin 400 event, spectators can expect a race weekend differing from what we would see in NASCAR or the IZOD INDYCAR Series. Four practice sessions will be held on the Friday for the V8 Supercars ahead of a series of qualifying races. Saturday and Sunday will each consist of two qualifying races followed by a pair of 27-lap feature events. Each sprint race is expected to take approximately 40 minutes to complete.

A derivative of the Australian Touring Car Championship that ran from 1960 to 1998, passion for racing high-performance V8 engines are richly observed Down Under. Australian classic cars competing in the touring car includes the Holden Monaro GTS350 and the Ford Falcon XB. Action movie fans would recall a black “Pursuit Special” Ford Falcon XB in the Mad Max movies. Since 1998, the Australian Touring Car Championship has operated as the V8 Supercars organization. For a long time limited to the Oceania region of the world, the Australian V8 Supercars Series has actively branching out to other world audiences. The Australian V8 Supercars Series first venture to other markets consisted of a stop at the Shanghai International Circuit in 2005. Trips to the Bahrain International Circuit and the Yas Marina Circuit in the United Arab Emirates have also sit on the V8 Supercars calendar in recent years. Operating under the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), the track that proved more than capable of hosting the 2012 United States Grand Prix should serve ideally for the first North American race for the V-8 powered machines.

busch,_courtney_at_cota

The first year for a new set of rules designed to foster greater on-track competition, improved driver safety and lower costs for teams, the V8 Supercars grid has doubled from two to four car makes in 2013. Returning to the series is the Ford FG Falcon and the Holden VF Commodore. For motorsport audiences in the United States, the Holden VF Commodore is recognized thanks to a General Motors relative currently racing on the NASCAR circuit. The limited production 2014 Chevy SS sedan and the Chevrolet Caprice PPV share the General Motors Zeta platform with the Australian sold Holden VF Commodore. Making a high profile arrival in Australian Touring V8 Supercars for 2013, Nissan enlisted the experience of 2006 V8 Supercar champion Rick Kelly and brother Todd as part of a new Altima race effort. Michael Caruso and James Moffat are also campaigning a pair of Nissan Altima race cars in 2013 powered by a custom V-8 engine. The fourth competing make in 2013 Australian V8 Supercars is the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG campaigned by three competitors this season. 28 cars total are set to part of the 2013 Austin 400 race event.

Several teams involved in the Australian V8 Supercars circuit have prepared special paint schemes for their inaugural North American event. Normally running a black and red paint scheme with Australian auto part retailer Supercheap Auto prominently displayed, the 2005 championship driver Russell Ingall will don a yellow and black colour on his #17 Holden VF Commodore for the Austin race weekend. Jonathon Webb’s Team TEKNO has also chosen to debut a new livery promoting Darrell Lea soft liquorice for the Austin 400 race.

Having over $100 millions of cars and equipment flown overseas by two Boeing 747 airplanes, a lot is being invested in the V8 Supercars’ first United States event. With less than a week before the various V-8 powerplants will be revving at the Circuit of the Americas, the prelude to the event has already involved a driver swap between NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Kurt Busch and Holden Racing Team pilot James Courtney.

Information, photo and video source: Circuit of the Americas, NASCAR, Nissan North America, V8 Supercars

Chris Nagy

Chris Nagy

Automotive Editor
Admiring automobiles ever since childhood viewership of the TV show Knight Rider, Chris Nagy grew as an enthusiast enroute to become an automotive and motorsport writer. Drawn to the rich world of motoring, Chris discovers charm everywhere in the industry from supercars like the Bugatti Veyron to a Kia Soul. Car design, engineering, performance and the passion itself fuels his daily existence.
Chris Nagy

@ChrisnagyCarGuy

Mech Eng. Grad, Automotive & Motorsport Journalist with a wide range of intrigue. An Unsuccessful Quitter Who Continues to Try.
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