- Publish Date
- Thursday, 24 November 2022, 10:43AM
Supercars will not be coming to New Zealand next year.
The 2023 Supercars calendar was announced today, with the season beginning in Newcastle from March 10 and ending in Adelaide on November 26, but a New Zealand leg was missing from the schedule.
Pukekohe Park Raceway had previously been the New Zealand home of Supercars, but the venue will close to motorsport activity from April next year after a change in ownership in 2021, leaving organisers scrambling to find a replacement.
Hampton Downs was initially considered as the favourite for the new Kiwi leg of the V8 circuit, but acquiring funding to upgrade the facilities in time for the 2023 season became an issue.
Supercars CEO Shane Howard said he is hopeful the championship will return to New Zealand in the future.
“We are still in progressive talks with our counterparts there for an event in the future, however as they continue it is in the best interest of all parties involved to focus on 2024 and beyond.
“We have every intention to return to New Zealand and we are confident of an announcement in the new year regarding a partnership with a new venue.”
The Herald reported earlier this month that the 2023 Supercars calendar release was delayed whilst details were finalised around Pukekohe Park’s replacement, with Quinn motorsport Group appealing to the New Zealand Government for financial help.
The announcement suggests funding remains an issue.
MBIE’s manager of New Zealand Major Events Kylie Hawker-Green said the Government will continue discussions with Supercars organisers around financial support for the future.
“Major international events generate significant economic, social and cultural benefits for Aotearoa New Zealand,” Hawker-Green said.
“The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment has previously supported the V8 Supercar events over five years from the former Major Events Development Fund and will continue to liaise with event organisers to consider how the government could support the event returning to Aotearoa New Zealand in future.”
The date on the 2023 calendar that was set aside for New Zealand has now been given to Sandown, which will see the return of the traditional 500km, pre-Bathurst endurance race.
This article was first published on nzherald.co.nz and is republished here with permission
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