World class motorsports will return to Hidden Valley this weekend with the Nitro Up North drag racing event. The event is expected to attract some 16,000 spectators and competitors and will provide an important boost to the tourism sector.
Nitro fuelled dragsters will once again shake the ground along with doorslammers and nitro bikes all lining up for the opening round of the national 400 Thunder Professional Drag Racing Series sanctioned by the Australian National Drag Racing Association (ANDRA).
Minister for Tourism and Culture, Lauren Moss said the Territory Labor Government is proud to be a sponsor of motorsports and of the Nitro Up North.
"Motorsports has a big following here, that’s why the NT Government is investing $13 million in infrastructure upgrades for motorsports venues across the NT, including $6 million at Hidden Valley. Last year around 15,000 spectators attended the event. Many of these were visitors to Darwin. 123 entrants will participate in this year’s event, 79% of these are visitors to the NT and 62% of entrants plan to go sightseeing while here. Last year entrants spent an average of $5,178 in the NT. These are important, tangible outcomes for our tourism industry and local jobs.”
The 2016 event saw the world’s third fastest drag race speed in history, set at Hidden Valley Raceway, with one racer reaching over 500km/h.
MotorSports NT (MSNT) President Grant Hamon said the MSNT Board continued to provide the best possible support to ensure one of the NT’s biggest club motor sports events gets stronger each year.
“Motor sports fans from the Territory and interstate will be wrapped that Nitro Up North is back bigger and better in 2017 as the first round of the Australian National Drag Racing series. Let’s see if the expanded field in Top Fuel can go one better and set yet another world record.” Mr Hamon said.
Nitro Up North organiser Scot Maclean said his hopes were high for another tremendous event, building on last year’s record crowds.
“Travelling to Nitro Up North isn’t just another drag racing event – it’s an adventure, and we’ve got the best drag racers from around the country coming to Darwin who see it as an opportunity to compete while also seeing the spectacular landscapes that the NT is known for. The event is world class and the 2017 show will without doubt see fast and furious action over the weekend” Mr MacLean said.
The Top Fuel teams will be joined by Pro Slammers, Top Bikes and hundreds of racers in the Summit Sportsman Series for awesome championship drag racing. Nitro Up North is organised and run by Hidden Valley Drag Racing Association (HVDRA), proudly sponsored by the NT Government and funded through Motorsports NT as the Peak Body.
Media are invited to a pre-event briefing to be held at Hidden Valley Drag Strip at 10:30am Thursday 21 July with Motorsports NT President Grant Hamon and Scott McLean, event organiser.