In November 2017 the Supercars drivers will take on a challenging circuit that runs through the eastern end of the Newcastle CBD taking in scenic views along Shortland Esplanade, Newcastle and Nobby’s beaches and Newcastle Harbour, 2.6km in length.
Reigning Virgin Australia Supercars Champion Shane Van Gisbergen takes a turn-by-turn look at Australia’s newest street circuit.
“I’m really looking forward to heading to Newcastle this year. It’s another street circuit and I love the way you have to push the car to the absolute limit at these tracks. Not only that, but it’s a brand new track too, which is really cool.
“Looking at the track layout, I think it’s going to be a fun little circuit. After a sweeping pit straight you’ll need to carry speed into turn one and get a good exit for the long run up to turn two.
“Then you’ll need to get hard on the brakes for the slow, 90-degree left-hander at turn two. You’ll want to have some good front grip for that.
“Turns three, four and five will come up on you pretty quick, so you need to flow the car and keep up the speed. If you can get away with it, don’t touch the brake pedal!
“Then we’ve got a bit of a staircase to make up turns six, seven and eight. The car will need good stability so you can brake late, get it turned and get on the throttle as hard as you can without spinning up the rear wheels. You want to get good drive out of turn eight for the long run up that back stretch.
“A sweeping section leads to turn nine, which looks like it’ll be pretty high speed. It could be similar to turn eight in Adelaide if we have the concrete walls all around us. Carry as much speed as you can through here, but you will need your aero working for you.
“This section through the park is being built specifically for the race track, so it’ll be a bit of a hybrid circuit like Townsville, which is pretty cool.
“It’s a short dash up to turn 10, which is a hairpin, so hard on the brakes to wash off lots of speed. Now you need as much low-speed grip as you can get and you don’t want too much understeer or you’ll be waiting to get back on the throttle. A lot of time can be lost or gained in these long, low-speed corners.
“To finish, it’s a short dash to turn 11. Focus on the exit so you can maximise your run down to the start-finish line.”