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Old 12-28-2004, 23:01   #1 (permalink)
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Anybody seen this article?

Just saw this over at holden-vs-ford forum website.

Treasuring the years of thrills and spills
Jaedene Hudson
17dec04

Sydney's famous Oran Park Raceway is closing.

Originally built as a club track in the early 1960s, Oran Park became popular in the '70s for touring car racing.
The track is nestled in the middle of land owned by two brothers from western Sydney, who recently sold it as part of a billion-dollar housing development deal.

Work is expected to start on the site in 2007 and more than 100,000 homes will be built.

Oran Park general manager Jeff Bowliss said he can guarantee next year's motor racing calendar will go ahead as planned, but could not confirm any plans beyond.

He said while the move sees the end of the circuit, it won't spell the end of the involvement of the Oran Park management in motorsport.

"We want to continue in motorsport," Bowliss says.

"We will be going somewhere else. There are many options but we don't know where or anything at this stage."

The track initially consisted only of the current south circuit, with the extended grand prix figure-8 layout built in the early '70s. Before the control tower was built in 1968 a double-decker bus was used for timing and commentary.

Oran Park has hosted the Australian Grand Prix, been the home of truck racing and was the venue for the final round of the Australian Touring Car Championship for many years.

It was also instrumental in the running of Sports Sedans racing in the '70s.

The track has been the scene of many memorable battles, including the duels of Allan Moffat and Bob Jane in the early '70s.

While Warwick Farm was famous for open wheelers, Oran Park will be most remembered for touring cars driven by some of Australia's motorsport legends, such as Moffat, Jane, Peter Brock, Colin Bond, Norm Beechey and Ian Geoghegan.

It is not only the racing drivers who will have to find a new home. With a 2.62km grand prix circuit, 1.94km south circuit, the skidpan, two dirt circuits, motocross track and go-kart circuit, Oran Park has been a popular choice for driver training.

Bowliss said he hoped those businesses would move with them.

"It will be a very sad day," he says. "Oran Park was really a great viewing track. It has a great history. It is famous for some really great battles ... Moffat and Jane in the early 1970s. It has always been a people's track, not an exclusive club."

Oran Park joins several Sydney tracks that have disappeared over time, including Amaroo Park, Catalina Park and Warwick Farm.

The first event in 2005 will be the Touring Car Festival on January 22 and 23, an "all touring car" historic race meeting with cars and drivers who competed in the Australian Touring Car Championship from 1960-1992.

The V8 Supercars will race from August 12-14 and the trucks will be at the track in September. The year will be capped off by the Kids Race Day in December.

Hope the circuit stays open for a bit longer,Wilton {the site where the Perich family is said to have property} is out near Campbelltown.No idea as whether they are going to build there or not.
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Old 12-28-2004, 23:48   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

Yes, very sad. Part of the problem is people moving and building out there don't want the noise associated with motorsport, regardless that the track has been there for decades.
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Old 12-29-2004, 00:38   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

I'm going to miss Oran Park. Sure it's a little further away from the city compared to Eastern Creek, but I think you get a better view of the racing:

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Old 12-29-2004, 01:25   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

this really annoys me alot. its the same deal as airports. they were there BEFORE the residents built/moved into the immediate area. if you dont like noise then dont move there its that simple.
infact the proplem is the people....they are simpletons!
"gee do you reckon if we build near a race track it'll be noisy?"
"nah its a race track why would it be?"
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Old 12-29-2004, 04:58   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

The things is there really isn't any houses near Oran Park. the people who own Oran park also own most the land for as far as you can see & then some around that but they have sold the lot so new McMansions etc can be built out there. They also own several other large chunks of land that they are looking at building a new facility. Where it ends up tho will depend if they can convince the local people of one of those areas that it would be a good idea, funnily enough one of the areas of land they own is Badgerys Creek where an airport was rejected.
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Old 12-29-2004, 13:09   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

Considering the problems Badgery Creek had, their chances of building another circuit ANYWHERE in Sydney would be zero. Bob 'anti' Carr would make it impossible with enviromental impact studies, NIMBY would come out of the woodwork again and some green group will claim to find a rare spotted albino mexican frog thats alledgelly indigenous to what ever area a race tracks going to be built. The owners may be nice people and have a desire to own another track, reality will be they should've kept the one they had.
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Old 12-29-2004, 16:15   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

Bummer!! Just what we don't need. OP looks like a great little track with a lot of history behind it. It's another Calder now!!

Amaroo - Gone. Surfers Paradise - Gone. Lakeside - Closed.

Proper racetracks are becomming an endangered species now with Calder derelict, likely never to be resurrected and Sandown at the mercy of the horse racing mob who can pull the plug on it at any time the future isn't too good!!

At least Sydney still has Eastern Creek and we have PI saved from the brink of closure.
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Old 12-29-2004, 17:28   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

Bugger thats a awesome track for spectating.

I love this quote though:-->"We will be going somewhere else. There are many options but we don't know where or anything at this stage."

Translated is we have no options at this time and have no idea whats going to happin?? :)
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Old 12-30-2004, 15:52   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

I could cry. I love going to Oran Park.......great track!
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Old 01-01-2005, 14:23   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Anybody seen this article?

I know what you guys mean,OP is a great track to watch racing.The family supposedly have land at Wilton which is out Campbelltown way,might be a little further drive for most of us.

Lakeside was a nice circuit too,but it needed at lot of work done on it.
Catalina park at Katoomba was another nice circuit,now gone.Saw Frank Matich race there one time and also saw a rally cross event there.
Amamroo Park,gone;another great circuit down the gurgler.

Maybe we should all petition the state government to keep OP where it is.
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