Winters pre-race programme set for change in 2011

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Willowbank Raceway has announced changes to the 2011 Castrol EDGE Winternationals pre-event program.

It has been previously announced that from 2011, the event – the largest drag racing event outside of the US – will move to a Friday through Monday format as opposed to its previous Thursday-Sunday schedule.

This change has opened up opportunities for the track to revisit its pre-event schedule, which has included the Junior Dragster Challenge, a test and tune event and the official Winternationals Warm-Up across the weekend immediately preceding the Queen’s Birthday weekend event.

To allow competitors more on-track time, the Warm-Up event will be in 2011 extended to a two day event (Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 June) and the Junior Dragster Challenge will move to Thursday the 9th of June – the day prior to the start of the Castrol EDGE Winternationals.

Willowbank Raceway Managing Director Steve Bettes said the changes were about making things easier and more efficient for the competitors and track officials.

“The 2010 Castrol EDGE Winternationals was hailed as one of the most successfully run events in our history, however as such a busy period for the track, the logistical issues of running three pre-events in the lead up to our largest event were becoming difficult,” said Bettes.

“Add to that the massive growth of the Junior Dragster Challenge and the record entry numbers we had for the Warm-up and competitors were not receiving enough time on track.

“To counteract this, we have expanded the Warm Up program to the entire pre-Winternationals weekend and this will be run with pre-entries only to allow us to schedule sufficient track time for each and every class of vehicle, with all of that time run during the day when that access will be most effective for the teams.

“This will see the Junior Dragster Challenge move to the Thursday immediately preceding the Castrol EDGE Winternationals, allowing those competitors to take less time off school in some cases and travelling juniors and their families to save costs on accommodation.
“It will also allow those junior racers more time to compete as they will no longer be running up against the Saturday evening’s test and tune which will now be put aside for that week.

“The decisions also allow the track to more efficiently run the events, allowing extra resources, staff and time to go into making the Castrol EDGE Winternationals the best it can be.”

Under the new arrangements, competitors will be able to enter for the Winters Warm-Up event up until the Friday one week prior to the event. Entry fees will be $150.00 for one day or $250.00 for both days.

Willowbank Raceway is Queensland’s premier drag racing facility and hosts four major drag racing events each year – the two-round New Year Series in January, the Australian Top Fuel Championships in March and the Castrol EDGE Winternationals in June. The Queen’s Birthday event is the largest drag racing event outside of the US and is the season finale for the ANDRA Pro Series calendar.

For more information on Willowbank Raceway and the Castrol EDGE Winternationals, please visit:

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