V8 Supercars Australia at the Bahrain Grand Prix circuit...
Time Out Bahrain staff
The new year will see one of the region’s most exciting motorsport attractions, the V8 Supercars Australia, return to the Kingdom in what has become one of the largest international racing events to be held in the Gulf. 16,500 adrenaline seekers will gather at the Bahrain International Circuit to get their high octane fix. The V8 Supercars will once again be delighting speed enthusiasts with a unique combination of screeching tyres, turbo boosted engines and eye watering acceleration as the stunning, high speed race lines up on the starting line later this month.
Representing some of the most thrilling action motorsports has to offer, the V8 Supercars Australia has delighted racing enthusiasts since the championship’s inception in 1997. The series sees over 29 drivers from 18 different teams all compete in either a Ford Falcon or Holden Commodore, making for edge-of-your-seat racing suspense.
The Championship began visiting the Bahrain International Circuit in the 2006 season where the Toll HSV Dealer Team blistered across the tarmac to victory. Since then the 14 round series has seen several changes, largely due to team, driver and fan feedback, most significant of which is the introduction of a soft compound tyre option which adds a strategic dimension to the category. The ‘sprint tyres’ can be employed in either of the two races per round, but teams and drivers need to be careful when they make use of their speed boost as using them too early may leave them watching the opposition speed off into the distance, while using them too late may not leave them with enough lap time to catch up with the opposition. Another important alteration to the V8 Championship is the re-introduction of the ‘top 10 shootout’ to the qualifying system, which will now see the final leg of the qualifying format only include the top 10 cars from the previous leg.
The arid desert conditions which present most racing championships with a host of new challenges and predicaments as the sand, wind and heat take their toll on drivers and vehicles alike, don’t pose too much of a threat for the 29 skilled drivers who are used to Australia’s own desert heat. Instead, competitors have their attention focused on the tarmac as Desert 400 is especially known for its aggressive driving style where cars regularly spin out of control as drivers muscle their way to the front of the lightning quick pack.
In 2008 the twelfth round of the Championship, held at the Bahrain International Circuit, saw several tangles as a number of drivers spun out of control, with at least one competitor having to retire early due to extensive car damage and many more following. The high pressured atmosphere with potential danger around every turn on the track proved too much to handle for many drivers, but not for Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes of Team Vodafone who claimed an impressive 1-2 victory and set the tone for the rest of the series where Whincup continued to dominate, finishing at the top of the table.
Spectators are guaranteed to be kept on the edge of their seats as the Australian speed junkies return to the Kingdom between February 25 and 27, 2010. Not only does the event promise to provide constant edge of your seat suspense and high octane fueled action, but will be accompanied by a host of entertainment which will delight all of the family. A combination of carnival acts, arts and crafts stalls, challenging games, acrobats, professional motorbike stunts and live music will guarantee an unforgettable day. Adults can even try their own hand behind the wheel in the Kart Zone, while kids can see if they have what it takes to be the next Schumacher in the Karting Circuit. Tickets are priced at BD10 for adults, while fans under 15 years old can get in free! For the real racing fanatic, purchase a Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix ticket and you can get a complimentary ticket to the V8 Supercars Australia.