Bathurst council responds to date debacle

The Bathurst Regional Council has responded to the battle over the Bathurst 1000 date currently taking place between Supercars and Challenge Bathurst.

Organisers of the Challenge Bathurst event are arguing that the revised Bathurst 1000 date encroaches on a two-week exclusion period in its contract with the Bathurst Regional Council.

The revised Bathurst 1000 date is November 4-7, while Challenge Bathurst is set to run from November 11-17.

Supercars issued a formal response to the matter this morning, highlighting that an agreement – including compensation – was in place with the Bathurst Regional Council and Challenge Bathurst over the new date.

It also put the onus back on the council, which it says has agreed to both dates, to sort out the issue.

The council has now issued its own response, general manager David Sherley acknowledging the exclusion period on the Challenge Bathurst contract but claiming work to resolve the matter is ongoing.

"Council continues to hold discussions with our event partners for events staged at the Mount Panorama Motor Racing Circuit including Supercars and the operators of Challenge Bathurst," said Sherley.

"We will continue to honour its existing contractual agreements for motorsport events at the Mount Panorama Motor racing circuit.

"The weekend of 4 -7 November falls within the exclusive use period for the Challenge Bathurst event, however we continue to work with our partners in a bid to resolve issues surrounding the running of these events.

"The current COVID-19 outbreak is posing many difficulties for all sporting categories in scheduling events, not just motor racing. We look forward to a return of motor racing to Mount Panorama later this year. It provides a huge economic stimulus to the community."

Challenge Bathurst has offered the October 28-31 date as a compromise for Supercars, however that is just a week after the Phillip Island SuperSprint event.

That's unlikely to be considered adequate time for teams to prepare for the biggest race of the season.

Holding the event any earlier is also not possible, given the aim of shifting the event back is to boost chances of the New South Wales COVID-19 outbreak subsiding and crowds being allowed through the gate.

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