HIGH-PERFORMANCE S5000 open-wheelers will race for the first time on Bathurst's Mount Panorama after Australian Racing Group was awarded the tender to run the fifth and final major event at the circuit.
Bathurst Regional Council awarded the tender during a confidential meeting on Wednesday night, signing off on a five-year deal with ARG.
The new event will run alongside the four current major events that require full track closure - the Bathurst 12 Hour, Bathurst 6 Hour, Bathurst 1000 and Challenge Bathurst - and will be the last major event allowed under legislation that covers the operation of the Mount.
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Councillor Warren Aubin said the ARG event would be like nothing Bathurst has seen and would feature a range of cars, including S5000s, TCR (Touring Cars), TCM (Touring Car Masters), LMP3 (Le Mans Prototype) and TA2 (muscle car) categories.
"People have been waiting for a V8 open wheeler category in Australia for years and this is it," he said.
"They will also be bringing the TCR cars from overseas to race the locals. They're the up and coming touring car racers in the country.
"This will be another event that's just going to grow into something very special, just as the 12 Hour and 6 Hour keep growing and growing."
Cr Aubin said ARG was the standout tenderer for the fifth Mount event.
"They are a racing group that has acquired, I would say, probably the best array and most diverse racing categories in Australia, and they're bringing them here."
Australian Racing Group director Matt Braid welcomed the acceptance of their tender.
"ARG and CAMS wish to thank the Bathurst Regional Council for their support and endorsement of our event, and we look forward to working with the Council and the Bathurst community to make this one of the most spectacular events for motorsport fans in Australia and across the globe," he said.
Mayor Bobby Bourke said the ARG proposal was an exciting event that would bring new classes of racing to the Mount circuit.
"We expect the event to be up and running in December 2020 and we're excited about the prospect of seeing new cars and drivers lining up to tackle the challenging circuit," Cr Bourke said.
"... [It] will be the grand finale of the global motorsport calendar each year," he said.
ARG will partner with council for five years to run the fifth Mount event.