New lights tested for Sydney night race

  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 21/02/2018
  • By Stefan Bartholomaeus

Supercars has undertaken a second lights test at Sydney Motorsport Park as preparations continue for the Red Rooster Sydney SuperNight event in August.

The event will feature racing under temporary lighting, marking the first Supercars night race on Australian soil since Calder Park's round in 1997.

All Supercars sessions, consisting of two 30-minute practice hitouts, a 20-minute qualifying and the race will be run on Saturday, August 4.

Support action, including Australian GT, Carrera Cup Australia and Carrera Cup Asia, will kick-off the previous day.

An initial lights test took place ahead of the 2017 Red Rooster SuperSprint last August, with Fabian Coulthard and Simona De Silvestro aboard their respective Supercars.

A second evaluation was undertaken on the eve of last Friday’s full-field Sydney outing, where a course car was used to evaluate how the lights will work for television.

Both lights tests focused on the circuit’s second corner, allowing officials to analyse the results before setting a plan for the full circuit.

Supercars’ general manager of television and content, Nathan Prendergast oversaw the latest test and was highly encouraged by the result.

The first lights test last August The first lights test last August

“The lights that were tested on Thursday night put out up to 450,000 lumens,” he told Supercars.com.

“The test was focused on the ability to get a better reach and spread of the light, which has to be suitable for broadcast, drivers and officials.

“The light system not only works well for illuminating the track, but its range and throw mean braking areas, signage and the general vicinity will all be well covered.

“I feel heartened by the results and am extremely comfortable that we will be able to deliver a fantastic television result."

Working alongside Supercars’ motorsport department, Prendergast says a detailed plan will now be formulated.

A third test is likely to take place within the next six-to-eight weeks as the countdown to the event continues.

In addition to the trackside lighting, Prendergast says other initiatives are also being looked at to assist the drivers and increase the spectacle.

“We’re looking at the possibility of using reflective track edges to improve sight-lines," he said.

"Not only would they help drivers with track edges, but also it would add to the television perspective, accentuating corners.”

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