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DATE News (chronologically)
10/25/09
v8
SuperGP needs a good crowd on Sunday  The Gold Coast SuperGP crowds have continued to slide, however Queensland Sports Minister Phil Reeves believes a surge today will save the event.  Yesterday only 58,823 people turned out to the event, compared with 83,337 last year.  Despite the drop, the embattled Mr. Reeves said the event was doing well.

"Today has gone terrific," he said.

"Generally tourism is down across the country about 8 per cent. Most events and sports events have been down generally because of the global economic crisis.

"Because of the uncertainty with the economic crisis and the uncertainty about the A1GP, that would have impacted slightly.

"But once people adopt this new format I think people will pleasantly surprised."

Mr. Reeves believes his predicated Sunday surge will see the overall crowd attendance for the four days reach 250,000.

"I think we're on track to do that," he said.

"It's live on television now on Channel 7. Anyone in southeast Queensland will say 'hang on a minute, we can get down there and see two races'," he said.

Event general manager Greg Hooton said it was another solid day for attendance and action on track.

"If we get another great day of weather tomorrow, I think the action on track today will simulate a terrific Sunday crowd," he said.

"The work by our team is continuing around the clock to finish off the event with the best result possible."

While the crowds may have been smaller they were still the same as the Indy days with plenty of boobs, beer and bravado on display.

"Having less people here is better I reckon," said Southport resident Thomas Pyke who was partying on the hairpin hill.

"You can actually move around for once. It's great," he said.

Following the A1GP disaster, in which the much-hyped series never arrived, there have been calls for Mr. Reeves to resign.

However he says those calls will fall on deaf ears as he's determined to stay in the job.

"I'm not going to resign. I know what I've done. I know I've worked tirelessly in making sure the event is as good as we got.

"I believe this format is better than what was planned.

"When the chips looked down this time last week I was able to announce right here in pit lane the new format and all I've done all week is ensure the promotion of this event is paramount so we can get the crowds and the fans here in force for the benefit of the Gold Coast." goldcoast.com.au

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