The upgraded Pukekohe track has proven a huge success with drivers and fans. The new corners created some intense action and with 4 winners over the 4 races shows that this is a track that anyone can succeed on when they get things right.


The ITM Grandstand was packed

Key partners revel in success of ITM 400 return to Pukekohe

The return of the V8 Supercars Championship to Pukekohe has proven an outstanding success according to V8 Supercars and ATEED (Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development).

The three days of the ITM 400 Auckland drew 117,167 fans to Pukekohe to see Jason Bright win the inaugural Jason Richards Trophy.

V8 Supercars CEO David Malone said he could not be happier with the first year back at the significantly upgraded Pukekohe Park Raceway; with the support from fans; the feedback from race teams and with the outstanding partnerships forged with ATEED and naming sponsor ITM.

“I think it has been a fantastic three days. Seeing the crowds here over the weekend all enjoying themselves, the big numbers and great racing - I  don’t think we could have wanted for any more for the first event back here,” Mr Malone said.

“This circuit is the spiritual home of motorsport in New Zealand and I was delighted with the way the fans have engaged with the event and seeing so many families here.

“I think we have proven over the weekend that this is going to be a major event in New Zealand going forward over the next few years. We have had a massive turnout over the weekend and that was what we were trying to achieve.

“There’s been a lot of feedback from the drivers who have enjoyed the new sprint format and are very happy with the layout of the circuit which has been evidenced by the racing we have seen.”

ATEED’s Jennah Wootten said she was extremely pleased with the weekend which had delivered a world class event to motor sport fans in its inaugural year back at Pukekohe Park Raceway.

“Auckland has hosted New Zealand’s biggest annual sporting event over the last there days,” she said. “The people that have turned up, and the enjoyment they've had demonstrates the value this event brings to Auckland and New Zealand."

Both organisations are looking forward to further improving the event going forward.

“This is the first of a five year contract with V8 Supercars and we look forward to helping to raise the bar further in 2014,” said Ms Wootten.

Mr Malone agreed.

“It is only our first event back here and we will review this as we do with all our events. I am sure we will make some improvements next year to make it even better.”

The ITM 400 drew daily numbers of 35,401 on Friday, 40,319 on Saturday and 41,447 on Sunday with no significant issues reported throughout.


V8 Supercars Champion turns up the heat at Pukekohe

Pukekohe Bridge ITM 400

Four-time V8 Supercar champion Jamie Whincup has given his backing to Pukekohe Park Raceway after running the first laps in anger at the revamped circuit today.

Whincup drove the Red Bull Racing Holden for 25 laps a race speed today, with rides for fans and media ahead of the ITM 400 Auckland V8 Supercars Championship event at Pukekohe on 12-14 April.

Yesterday Whincup drove Auckland Mayor Len Brown around the city in his race car, creating plenty of interest as they drove down Queen Street to the Viaduct to signal the return of the V8 supercars Championship to Auckland.

Whincup Corner

The current V8 Supercars Champion believes there is some of the old and some of the new wrapped up in the revamped circuit.
“I think it is fantastic,” Whincup said. “I have had a bit of fun today and got 20 odd laps around here. It brings back some memories. It still has the character it had when we raced here back in the early 2000s.

“The new stuff has spiced it up. It is much cleaner and much safer now for the drivers and that is the most important thing. I can’t wait for it to clean up and put new tyres on it for qualifying.”

Whincup joked that he has one-up on his rivals as the first driver to complete laps at race speed on the track.
“There has to be some rewards for coming over. I am unsure what the others are doing, perhaps chilling out on the beach or trying to make their cars go faster but I am over here promoting the race and as a side-effect I get to have a few laps here.

“I hope it will help a bit for the race here and I can’t wait to come back in 18 days.”
The $6.6m project includes improving and replacing safety barriers, debris fencing and curbing, some resurfacing, major alterations to the pit area, new pit garages, control buildings and addition of three new corners on the back straight.

Whincup now fixes his sights on the V8 Supercar Championship in Tasmania next weekend ahead of the sole New Zealand round.

Check out Jamie as he enjoys some Hot Laps around the Track


V8 Supercar ace Murphy gives thumbs-up to revamped Pukekohe circuit

Greg Murphy Approves the ITM 400 Track

The King of Pukekohe, Greg Murphy has given his thumbs-up to the revamped Pukekohe Park Raceway for next month’s ITM 400 Auckland V8 Supercars race.
The $6.6m project includes improving and replacing safety barriers, debris fencing and curbing, some resurfacing, major alterations to the pit area, new pit garages, control buildings and addition of three new corners on the back straight.

Murphy, the event’s ambassador, said he is impressed at the changes to his favourite circuit, after driving media around Pukekohe Park Raceway today.
“For those like me that know it well, you will hardly recognise it. The changes are quite stunning,” Murphy said.
“For starters it is a much safer circuit which it needed to be. Overall the changes are fantasitc and it has really injected new life into the circuit, which is pretty fitting given it is the 50th anniversary of Pukekohe.”

Murphy, who confirmed he has been unable to secure backing for a wildcard ride for the New Zealand race, said he was initially reticent about the changes made to the circuit especially the controversial new corners on the back straight.
“But after seeing them and driving around it, they are going to add a significant new challenge to drivers and some new passing opportunities.
“At the same time the rest of the track itself is unchanged in its nature and so it is still fast and flowing with all the bumps that has makes Pukekohe such a great circuit.”

Greg Murphy Takes on the new corners

The Holden driver, who won the V8 Supercars Championship round three years in succession at Pukekohe from 2001 to 2003, believes the fans will also be the big winners.
“With the new overbridge out to the new corners, the spectators are going to get close to what is going to be some serious action during the racing.
“I was okay watching the opening round at Clipsal from the sidelines but it is going to be hard watching on as the V8 Supercars tackle this circuit.”

The new corners of five, six and seven have now been sealed, with the new pit structures and control buildings in place.
Contractors are busy with finishing work including grassing, electrical and painting ahead of the ITM 400 Auckland on 12-14 April.
Along with the track changes, there are refurbished spectator facilities including new viewing grandstands and premium viewing areas.


Van Gisbergen keen on upgrade for ITM 400 Auckland

Shane Van Gisbergen wins at the Clipsal 500

Shane Van Gisbergen in action during his vicotry at the Clipsal 500 Champsionship in Adelaide

Adelaide V8 Supercars winner Shane Van Gisbergen has given his support behind the changes to the revamped Pukekohe Park Raceway ahead of next month’s ITM 400 Auckland.

Yesterday Kiwi ace Greg Murphy, a three-time winner on the famed Pukekohe circuit, endorsed the changes after he was the first person to drive the track.
The $6.6m project includes improving and replacing safety barriers, debris fencing and curbing, some resurfacing, major alterations to the pit area, new pit garages, control buildings and addition of three new corners on the back straight.

Van Gisbergen, who guided his new Tekno Racing Holden team to victory on the final day at the Clipsal 500, is excited about the changes including the three new corners on the back straight to make the circuit safer.

“It is a fantastic track and the upgrades they have put in place are going to be pretty good and the new parts of the track will be exciting,” Van Gisbergen said.

“I went to have a look at the changes. It has created one or two passing opportunities. There are different lines through that section so I think you will see a lot of mistakes by drivers and a lot of exciting racing. Hopefully it is a great return to Pukekohe to the series.”
Van Gisbergen, this week endorsed by defending champion Jamie Whincup as a genuine threat to the championship, says he is looking forward to returning to his home track for the ITM 400 Auckland event.

“Pukekohe is the home of V8 Supercars in New Zealand and so it is great to be back there. I had one of my first wins at Pukekohe.
“2003 was the first year I went there when Murph was cleaning up and Ambrose was on form as well. There were some great battles I remember.
“I grew up watching Murph win races and now I am in a Holden as well it will be great to get a result there as well.”

Along with the track changes, there are refurbished spectator facilities including new viewing grandstands and premium viewing areas.

Click here for ticket options.


Pukekohe Park Raceway upgrade nearing completion

Work is well advanced on the major $6.6m upgrade of Pukekohe Park Raceway for next month’s ITM 400 Auckland V8 Supercars race.

The works include improving and replacing safety barriers, debris fencing and curbing, some resurfacing, major alterations to the pit area, new pit garages, control buildings and addition of two new corners on the back straight.

After two months of demolition, earthworks and infrastructure improvements, construction is now at its peak with the new pits and control buildings nearing completion. The buildings rest on a new massive concrete pad area constructed after the removal of 9000cm of soil.

“Everything is either well ahead or right on schedule,” V8 Supercars Chief Operating Officer Shane Howard said.

“The Pukekohe track is being completely transformed. With the pit building taking place and the two new corners looking absolutely superb this venue will be an outstanding facility.

ITM 400 Auckland Pit Building

“When this work is complete Pukekohe will be rightfully restated as the premier motorsport facility in New Zealand and the perfect location for the ITM400 Auckland.”

The new pit complex houses 32 pit garages as well as providing a significant service area behind the pits, while the pit lane has been re-aligned and drainage and storm water improved.

ITM400 Auckland Garages

The new curbing and widening of some parts of the circuit is almost complete which will provide for cleaner and safer racing while the two new turns on the back straight have now been sealed.

Along with the track changes, there are refurbished spectator facilities including new viewing grandstands and premium viewing areas.

Click here for more information about tickets and the special prices available for ITM Priority Card holders.

Pukekohe Raceway upgrade on track for ITM400 Auckland V8 Supercars

Work is progressing on schedule on the $6.6 million upgrade of Pukekohe Park Raceway in readiness to host April’s ITM 400 Auckland V8 Supercar event.
The works include improving and replacing safety barriers, debris fencing and curbing, some resurfacing, major alterations to the pit area, new pit garages, control buildings and addition of two new corners on the back straight.
After two months of demolition, earthworks and infrastructure improvements, construction is set to begin on the new pits and control buildings.

“Work is largely on schedule and helped by the excellent weather,” said project manager, Christian Butler from Integrated engineering Delivery Management (iEDM). “We have added to the original scope of works with more infrastructures especially around drainage and storm water.
“In the next two weeks the public will begin to see some major development. We have nearly finished the concrete pad and will begin construction of the new pits and also the control building.”

Pukekohe Pad

The work has included the removal of 9000 cub m of soil to enlarge and level the pit area.

 “There’s now a large concrete surface to provide not only for the 32 pit garages but also service area behind the pits, and we have also re-aligned the pit lane as well.”

The soil removed has been used on other parts of the circuit including the new corners on the back straight, designed to meet the new FIA safety standards for a grade 2 certificated circuit.

Pukekohe Turns 5 and 6

“The curbing and work has been completed on the two new corners and we plan to seal that new area of the track in the next two weeks.”
V8 Supercars Mark Skaife, the former five time champion, has headed the design changes to the circuit.

“Mark is thrilled with how the changes have come up. He strongly believes they will add considerably to the circuit in terms of creating two new passing opportunities and also add a real driving challenge that will be spectacular for drivers and fans alike.”

Skaife will return to Pukekohe next month for the official track inspection by FIA officials ahead of the ITM400 Auckland event on 12-14 April.

 

Mark Skaife - the V8 Supercars Commission Chairman talks about some of the upgrades currently taking place in the 2 videos below.

 

 

Track Map

Below is the first release of the track map for the ITM 400 Auckland. The changes to Pukekohe are going to make this a world class track with some exciting new turns, particularly around T5, T6 and T7. Keep checking back for full updates as we get closer to race time.

Click on the image below to see a large version!

ITM400 Auckland Track Map