What a huge month in February!
The commitment by the NSW Government to fund the installation of full circuit lighting is the result of a long period of consultations, presentations, meetings, discussions, briefings… you get the idea. The effort was considerable and is a credit to our staff team, led by Glenn, your Board and our advisors. It is important to understand that while the final decisions are made by political leaders the support of departmental advisors is critical. We are very glad that the senior figures in the NSW Department of Sport recognise the contribution made by the ARDC to improving and reinvesting in the SMSP venue and the value of ARDC as a stable and reliable venue operator.
Lighting the circuit will not only facilitate the attraction of major events such as Supercars but will significantly increase our operating capacity for a wide range of activities. We anticipate that some activities now held during the day will be better suited to after-work hours, so lighting the track will also free up daytime capacity.
We do realise that the funding commitment is dependent on the NSW Government being re-elected on 23rd March. We have an ongoing and encouraging dialogue with representatives of the state Opposition and will continue to promote the value of lighting SMSP at every opportunity. However, the reality is that as yet there is no matching commitment from the Opposition.
You can read our official press release following Minister Ayers’ announcement HERE.
Although motorcycle riders have long been a minority amongst ARDC Members their numbers are increasing. We are keen to ensure there is plenty for our bike members to enjoy at SMSP. The big event in March will be the International Festival of Speed bike racing, to be held from March 14th – 17th. “Mr TT” John McGuinness will compete in the first ever QBE TT Cup Races at Sydney Motorsport Park and there will be Legends autograph sessions in a dedicated Signing marquee. Other featured riders include TT winner Michael Rutter and British Superbike rider Glenn Richards and former GP winner Jeremy McWilliams. All will be competing in various races at the event.
There are a couple of ‘housekeeping’ items that I need to mention:
Firstly, I remind everyone that smoking is banned in the SMSP paddock, garage and pit areas, as well as in any of the corporate suites, offices and the Garage Café. Apart from health considerations there is an obvious safety issue that arises from burning materials near fuel and other flammable substances. There are too many occasions when individuals ‘just nick out the back to have a quick smoke’. There are designated smoking areas at the venue; please use these. I encourage all Members to help us ensure our venue is safe.
Secondly, CAMS has advised that the use of any type of leaded fuel will no longer be permitted from 1st July 2019. We understand that this will apply to all vehicles, regardless of history or category.
In addition to increasing numbers of bike-riding Members, we are also seeing a marked increase in the number of female Members joining ARDC over the last few months. This is fantastic and very welcome, but it would be very interesting to know why! If you are a female Member that would like to tell us why you joined ARDC and what benefit you hope (or expect) to receive, please send an email either to firstname.lastname@example.org or direct to me at email@example.com
See you at SMSP,