THIS Saturday the Bathurst Showground will once again become a venue of high speed thrills when the Panorama Motorcycle Club plays host to the Australian Long Track Masters.
It’s now four years since the event has returned to the Bathurst Showground after conflict schedules previously forced a move to Blayney, and it continues to bring some of the nation’s top riders to the city.
This time around the event has undergone a slight reduction in events to help the night wrap up earlier but it doesn’t mean the quality of racing has been sacrificed.
A total of 63 entries have been received for the hotly contested Pro 450 class.
Among them is talented Queenslander Jarred Brook, who took out the Pro 450, Open and 250 categories in both 2015 and 2016.
Bathurst’s Ben Grabham will also be back, eyeing off a title defence in the 2 Stroke Unlimited and Over 35s categories.
PMCC president Bruce Morgan said the event should be missed by any lover of speedway.
“We’ve got nearly 180 entries over 106 races. We’ve tried to cut some down so we don’t go too late at night,” he said.
“This is like fast speedway, a longer version. These guys are going up to 160 kilometres an hour down the back straight there, and that’s something you don’t see at regular speedway.
“It’s something unique and something we see less and less now because the facilities for it aren’t around anymore.
“There’s a lot of entries from all over Australia and there’s some very talented local riders here too. We have three Grabham boys in there this year.
“Everyone’s been training really hard to try and knock off all the people from Tamworth and Currie.”
Both Dirt Track and Speedway Sidecars feature on the program as do the popular 500cc Sliders.
Among the other defending champions making the trip back to the Bathurst Showground are Billy Van Eerde (Junior 125-250cc), Corey Banks (Dirt track sidecar) and Amy Wedd (Women’s Open).
“500 Silders are going to be a very good event and there’s some great riders in there. The 450 Pros is a great event, and so are the sidecars,” Morgan said.
“We’ve had our meetings every month from March so we’ve been preparing for this event since then.
“This track is probably one of the best places in Australia for long track. Blayney was good but you talk to riders and this is the holy grail.”
Practice gets started from Saturday 9am and racing will start before 10.30am.