V8 Supercars has revealed the circuit layout and race format it will use when the Series makes its USA debut at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas in May.
The event, named the Austin 400, will use the shortened 3.7km National circuit which excludes five corners from the full-size 5.5km Grand Prix layout.
The V8 Supercars will contest four 100km sprints – two on Saturday and two Sunday, preceded by a qualifying session each day – the same format that will be used at next month’s ITM400 Auckland.
“We want to put on an unforgettable show for Americans to remember,” said V8 Supercars CEO David Malone said.
“Our aggressive style of racing is enormously popular in the states courtesy of our coverage on the SPEED network and online. There is a very large following amongst fans and U.S.-based categories, particularly the teams and drivers of NASCAR and IndyCar.
“As Australia’s premier motorsport category U.S. fans will be entertained and can expect the unexpected when 28 cars take to one of the world’s most challenging road courses ever designed.”
Defending V8 Supercars Champion Jamie Whincup is eager to tackle the state-of-the-art track completed last year ahead of the 2012 United States Grand Prix.
“We go out there and race hard, if it means bending a few panels here and there then so be it, I am sure fans won’t be disappointed,” said Whincup.
Everyone is out there to prove a point and take home that very first V8 Supercars Austin 400 trophy.
“The Circuit of The Americas has been compared to Bathurst and if that is anything to go by, then people are going to love the action that is sure to unravel over the weekend. I can’t wait; it’s going to be an amazing experience.”
Former V8 Supercars champion-turned-NASCAR racer, Marcos Ambrose, believes the shorter circuit is ideally suited to his former category.
“The first corner will be interesting. I was so, so afraid of a crisis situation at the start of the Formula 1 race but I guess they took care of each other and got through it.
“The problem is that you almost do a 180 (degree turn) and, with the wide entry, you can go in there four abreast, but four abreast cannot come out.”
Preparations are well on track for the May event says Circuit of the Americas President Steve Sexton.
“Circuit of The Americas is excited to bring the V8 Supercars Austin 400 race to our new world-class venue in May,” said Sexton.
“The series has a remarkable overseas following and a solid fan base here in the United States. The charismatic teams and drivers put on a great show, and with 28 cars fighting it out on track, the series offers the kind of rough-and-tumble competition that keeps race fans on the edge of their seats.
“We believe V8 Supercars is a great addition to our first full year of sports and entertainment programming in Austin, and that the series will be a hit with families looking for an action-packed weekend that is fun and affordable.”