Rainy track still Super
THE rainy skies told a tale of two motor sports over the weekend as the Willowbank motor racing precinct geared up for two and four wheeled events.
While the Australian Superbike Championships went ahead on the Queensland Raceway track, testing for the drag racing Winter Nationals was cancelled because of the heavy rain.
The weekend of rain was not what Willowbank Raceway managing director Steve Bettes was hoping for, especially coming off the back of a disastrous 2011 for the marquee event.
The Winter Nationals were postponed twice and eventually cancelled last year, but Mr Bettes hoped it has only made the drag racing faithful thirstier for action come the weekend.
Mr Bettes said more than 500 nominations had been received from all over Australia, New Zealand and USA.
The three-day event attracts 40,000 spectators and pours more than $4 million into the Ipswich economy.
"It's a significant event for us and the whole region."
Mr Bettes said testing was called off only as a precaution.
"We could see the weather was going to be bad this weekend but we could also see the weather for next weekend. It's really disappointing we've lost this weekend because a lot of guys wanted to test out their new stuff," he said.
"We lost it twice last year. Hopefully this year it will be bigger than Ben Hur."
As the Willowbank Raceway track dried out, the Superbikes roared around the adjacent Queensland Raceway for round five of the national championship.
Spokeswomen Denise Stronach said the championship is always supported well when it comes to Willowbank.
"It's a great atmosphere and a great racing track. The racing shows them what they can do on the bikes, because a lot of the bikes racing are street bikes," she said.
The Championship returns to Queensland Raceway on September 14 - 16 for the final round.