The mammoth task of constructing the 2.96km Surfers Paradise street circuit for the Armor All Gold Coast 600 – October 21-23 – is well and truly underway, with the first spectator bridge being put into place overnight.
Queensland Minister for Sport – Hon. Phil Reeves MP – was joined by V8 Supercars Acting CEO, Shane Howard and Peter Lawlor MP – Member for Southport – to inspect progress this morning.
"The first spectator bridge being installed really signifies the event is coming closer," said Reeves. "It is an exciting time to see this precinct grow from being a public road into one of the world's most iconic street circuits.
"The team will be working around the clock to get everything ready for our 28 Champion drivers that will be coming from all corners of the globe.
"This year, having the race beamed live into North America on SPEED Channel is going to open up Queensland, the Gold Coast and V8 Supercars to an audience that may never have seen what we have to offer.
"The Gold Coast 600 and this television deal positions Queensland as the events state and I expect we’ll have an influx of visitors when they see the V8 Supercars racing wheel to wheel mere meters from the Gold Coast's immaculate beaches.
"When you combine the 28 Champions that we’ll see racing around here in a few weeks time and our V8 Supercar legends with the recent performances of Gold Coast sporting stars Sally Pearson and Sam Stosur – it shows that Queensland really is the Champions State and the Events State."
Logistically – the Gold Coast street circuit is considered one of the most difficult street circuits in the world to construct – organizers have streamlined the build and dismantle process to no longer than six weeks. This has been aided by the 40% reduction in the circuit’s footprint for the re-born Armor All Gold Coast 600.
"We have approximately 6,000 residents within the precinct of the circuit as well as many thousands more that use the roads on a daily basis," said V8 Supercars Acting CEO, Shane Howard.
"Last year’s reduction of the circuit to the shorter 2.96km layout resulted in much less disruption, a speedier circuit build and delivered on providing better race action for our spectators."
Howard also mentioned that accreditation for residents was now open.
"We encourage local residents to lodge their application for accreditation sooner rather than later, it will close on September 30. Pleasingly, our numbers show that more than 50% have done this so far."
The Armor All Gold Coast 600 plays host not only to 28 Champions of motor racing from 12 countries, but Australia's V8 Supercar stars – who will be fresh from the V8 Supercars major races – the L&H 500 at Phillip Island this weekend and the iconic Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.
The event holds something for everyone – with the nightly 600 Sounds concert series, headlined by Bliss N Eso (Friday) and Simple Minds (Saturday).
The event caters for those of all ages with the Dreamworld Family Zone and the Disney.Pixar Cars 2 Mack the Truck Tour forming a feature part of the off-track entertainment at the Armor All Gold Coast 600.
Tickets are available through ticketek.com or by calling 132 849. Tickets for the three days of the event (October 21-23) including entry to the 600 Sounds Concerts, presented by Sea FM start at $136.
AT A GLANCE: ARMOR ALL GOLD COAST 600 TRACK CONSTRUCTION:
Circuit Length: 2.96km
Concrete Blocks Used: 1692
Blocks per truckload: 8
Trips undertaken: 423
Positioning: Each block positioned by GPS
Demarcation Fencing: 6km
Security Fencing: more than 10km
Pedestrian Bridges: 7
Pit Garages: 30 (28 + 2 technical garages)
Grandstand Seats: 11,000+
Corporate meals: more than 26,000
Spectators: (2010) 170,073
Proposed Construction Schedule:
First pedestrian bridge span installed: September 14
First grandstand built: September 14
Pedestrian Bridge span opposite Marriott Hotel installed: September 20
Pedestrian Bridge span on GC Hwy northbound installed: September 22
Pit Building built: September 24
First Road Diversion activated (Surfers Paradise Boulevard / Ferny Ave intersection closed and one-way traffic up Surfers Paradise Blvd to Ocean Ave): September 27
Pedestrian Bridge span on beach side installed: September 28
Pedestrian Bridge span from pit lane over to GC Hwy median strip installed: October 4
Pedestrian Bridge span on Breaker St installed: October 4
Pit Building S1 built: October 6
Double storey Corporate Suite built: October 7
Last Pedestrian Bridge installed: 12 October
Media Centre built: October 14
Roads re-opened to traffic post-Event: October 24 (6:00pm)