V8 Supercars and the Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas, announced today a five-year agreement to bring the Australian touring car series to the new venue, beginning in 2013. Supercars are the third series to sign up at the Texas venue, following Formula 1 and MotoGP.
“The addition of V8 Supercars into our lineup at Circuit of The Americas will add to what we already know will be a rich and exhilarating fan experience,” said Steve Sexton, president of Circuit of The Americas. “We're thrilled the racing world is so excited about our facility. Austin is poised to become the premiere North American destination for international motorsports. In addition to hosting the four-wheel and two-wheel world championships, the United States will now enjoy the world's best touring car series here in Austin.”
The SPEED network, which airs V8 Supercar races, will televises the Austin events, too.
“I can't describe how excited we are to bring the V8 Supercars race to such a spectacular facility,” said Tony Cochrane, chairman of V8 Supercars. "With Formula 1 racing, MotoGP and now V8 Supercars, it's obvious Circuit of The Americas will be a top-notch destination that houses the best racing on earth, and we are thrilled to be a part of it.
“We have expanded V8 Supercars' geographical influence over the past few years with plans to stage up to six races each year to complement our existing events in Australia, New Zealand and the Middle East,” added Cochrane. “Our entrance into the United States marks a new day for the series and we're excited for Americans to experience what has made V8 Supercars so popular in many places around the world.”
Formerly the Australian Touring Car Championship, the current series was devised in 1993 and branded as “V8 Supercars” in 1997. The cars are based on modified versions of Australia's two most popular passenger cars, the Ford Falcon and Holden Commodore.
V8 Supercars continues as one of Australia's largest sports both in attendance and television viewership. In 2010, approximately 1.7 million people attended V8 Supercars events. The series has taken over from IndyCars as the featured series for the street race in Surfers Paradise, Australia, which attracts an international field of drivers in addition to the series regulars.
Although a date for the race is yet to be set, the deal also represents the first time an Australian motorsport series has held a full championship race in the US - and has been hailed by Texas Governor Rick Perry, who said the arrival of V8 Supercars will provide a further boost to the state's economy.
"While Texas has established itself as the nation's place for business, it's quickly becoming the nation's place for big sporting events as well. V8 Supercars now joins Formula 1, MotoGP, NASCAR, the NFL, NBA, NCAA and USTA, among the many that have chosen Texas to host major events in the last few years.
"This is more good news for the Lone Star State, and will provide a significant boost to the economy of Central Texas."
The Circuit of the Americas is still under construction, but the 5.5-km purpose-built facility is due to host the 2012 Formula 1 United States Grand Prix and a round of the 2013 MotoGP world championship.