NZ PM: Hamilton’s loss will be Auckland’s gain

Local Kiwi Shane van Gisbergen leads the field at Hamilton this year

Local Kiwi Shane van Gisbergen leads the field at Hamilton this year

New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key says that Auckland could benefit from the demise of Hamilton’s V8 Supercars street race.

After Hamilton City Council and V8 Supercars announced last month that the NZ street race would be canned after the 2012 event, V8s and the NZ government have had preliminary discussions about setting up a 3.5km track on the Whenuapai Air Base from 2013.

During a visit to Hamilton yesterday, PM Key told the NZ Herald that the possibility of a race at the Whenuapai Air Base was a “wonderful thing” and could have Auckland’s support.

“There’s a facility there [in Whenuapai], it’s not without its complications as well, but it would certainly work and attract a large audience,” said Key.

The NZ Herald also reports that the mooted race at the airbase, 25km from Auckland, is in the Auckland Council’s hands, but still needs approval from the Ministry of Defence to use the land.

If the race at the airbase goes ahead, it will be V8 Supercars’ first-ever event held at an airport.

CLICK HERE for Speedcafe.com’s initial story on the potential for a race at the Whenuapai Air Base in 2013.

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