Victoria’s reputation for world-class major events has received a further boost with the Government announcing Phillip Island will host the Superbike FIM World (SBK) Championships for a further three years, from 2015 to 2017.
Speaker of the Legislative Assembly and Member for Bass Ken Smith made the announcement on behalf of Tourism and Major Events Minister Louise Asher at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit. “The Government recognises the importance of the World Superbikes as part of Victoria’s regional major events calendar and I am thrilled to announce another three years– which means another three years of economic stimulus and promotion of Phillip Island through national and international media and broadcast exposure.”
According to an Ernst & Young report , Phillip Island’s hosting of World Superbikes will deliver an economic benefit to Victoria in the range of $22 million per annum.
Mr Smith said the prestigious international event had become synonymous with Phillip Island, as not only the perfect vehicle to showcase Victoria’s world-class motorsports infrastructure to the rest of the world, but Phillip Island’s strong nature-based tourism experiences.
“Phillip Island plays an important role in positioning Victoria as having exceptional nature based experiences to both domestic and international markets, with the Phillip Island Nature Park one of the State’s key tourism attractions.”
“The Government through Tourism Victoria will continue to leverage major events such as the World Superbikes and market Phillip Island’s iconic Penguin Parade, family attractions and diverse beach and coastal offerings, along with the Island’s close proximity to Melbourne to grow the visitation,” Mr Smith said.
Mr Smith said along with the Motorcycle Grand Prix and the V8 Supercars, major events such as the World Superbikes have positioned Phillip Island – and Victoria, as Australia’s motorsport mecca. The Superbike Championships have been held annually at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit since 1990 Minister for Sport and Recreation, Hugh Delahunty said over the next five years the Phillip Island track will once again provide the perfect venue for championship riders to push their latest generation of high-performance bikes to the limit.
“Phillip Island is deservedly one of the best race tracks in the world. What better way to showcase Victoria’s fantastic sports facilities than to stage the world’s best events like the Superbikes World Championship,” he said The announcement follows last year’s $3million upgrade to the 4.445km Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit by Linfox Property Group.
Fergus Cameron, Managing Director, Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit said: “As always, our aim is to ensure the Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit remains one of the world’s great motorcycle meccas. “World superbikes locked in and ready to race till 2017 ensures sensational action for years to come for both riders and fans, and gives us the confidence to further invest in the track and its facilities.” Javier Alonso, Managing Director, DORNA Group, the global rights holder of the Superbikes World Series, said: ”Phillip Island is a special place, a unique track in a unique location.
“The island always delivers intense competition, with its long straight and fast flowing turns. It’s a great test for riders and a challenge for teams ,” said Alonso.
“The result is thrilling racing for fans whether they are cheering trackside or watching on television from anywhere around the globe.”