The Queensland 500 was a motorsport endurance race held at Queensland Raceway near Ipswich, Queensland, Australia. It was best known as a V8 Supercars race held from 1999 to 2002.

History

Background

The Queensland 500 was launched by the V8 Supercars category in 1999 to replace the Sandown 500 as the two-driver endurance event in the build-up to the Bathurst 1000. Supported by the Queensland Government, it was held at the newly built Queensland Raceway. The Queensland 500 also counted for championship points, with both the 500 kilometre race and the Bathurst 1000 added to the championship in 1999 for the first time. In 1999 and 2000, Queensland Raceway hosted both the endurance event and a sprint round of the championship.

V8 Supercars

The first event in 1999 was won by Larry Perkins and Russell Ingall, who were defending champions of the 500 km event, having won the 1998 Tickford 500 at Sandown.[1] The race proved crucial in the 1999 championship. Rather than pairing them together, the Holden Racing Team decided to split their two full-time drivers, Mark Skaife and Craig Lowndes, in the two-driver endurance races as they were both in championship contention. After Skaife suffered accident damage in an incident with Jason Bright, he could only finish 22nd, giving team-mate and eventual champion Lowndes a large points advantage with a third-place finish.[2] In 2000, Holden Racing Team team-mates Skaife and Lowndes combined to win, this time helping Skaife in his successful championship campaign.[1]

2001 saw a dramatic finish to the race due to a torrential rain shower. As the rain increased in the final five laps, Paul Radisich spun into a gravel trap out of the lead, giving the lead to the Perkins and Ingall entry. However, soon after, a red flag was waved, and as per the regulations the results were finalised as the standings on the second to last completed lap, meaning Radisich, driving with Steven Johnson, was still credited with the race win despite being beached in the gravel trap.[1] 2002 saw a surprise victory in the form of David Besnard and Simon Wills, the only round win of both of their championship careers. The pair had only taken the lead on the penultimate lap when Greg Murphy ran low on fuel.[3] The win was Ford's first round win since the Queensland 500 twelve months prior, while eventual seven-times champion Jamie Whincup also made his debut in the race.[4]

Demise

After the collapse of original circuit owners, Motorsport Queensland took control. Their interest in the race waned and the race reverted to the status of a standard V8 Supercar sprint round from 2003. This sprint event continues to this day. The 500 km race returned to Sandown Raceway for 2003.

Revival

The race was revived from 2006 to 2008 as a GT, sportscar and touring car relay race. The Queensland 500 was run for the final time in 2008.

Winners

Year Event title Winners Team Car
1999 Queensland 500 Australia Russell Ingall
Australia Larry Perkins
Perkins Engineering Holden VT Commodore
2000 Ozemail Queensland 500 Australia Craig Lowndes
Australia Mark Skaife
Holden Racing Team Holden VT Commodore
20011 V.I.P Petfoods Queensland 500 Australia Steven Johnson
New Zealand Paul Radisich
Dick Johnson Racing Ford AU Falcon
2002 V.I.P Petfoods Queensland 500 Australia David Besnard
New Zealand Simon Wills
Stone Brothers Racing Ford AU Falcon
2003
-
2005
not held
2006[5] Queensland 500 Club Enduro United Kingdom
Australia
Wayne Park Motorsport Services Porsche 962C
Holden Monaro 427C
2007[6] Queensland 500 Club Enduro United Kingdom
New Zealand Craig Baird
VIP Petfoods P/L Porsche 997 GT3 Cup
2008[7] Porsche Centre Gold Coast 500 Australia
Australia David Russell
Howard Racing Ford AU Falcon
Notes
  • ^1 – Race was red flagged due to bad weather; results were declared as of lap 156.[8]

Sponsors

  • 2000: OzEmail
  • 2001–02: VIP Petfoods
  • 2008: Porsche Centre Gold Coast

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c Greenhalgh, David; Howard, Graham; Wilson, Stewart (2011). The official history: Australian Touring Car Championship - 50 Years. St Leonards, New South Wales: Chevron Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-9805912-2-4.
  2. ^ "TIMELINE: Mark Skaife's career highlights". Speedcafe. 18 October 2011. Retrieved 14 June 2020.
  3. ^ "Saturday Sleuthing: Last Gasp Queensland Winner". Supercars. 26 July 2014. Retrieved 14 June 2020.
  4. ^ Noonan, Aaron (25 July 2017). "MEMORY LANE: 2002 Queensland 500". Speedcafe. Retrieved 14 June 2020.
  5. ^ "Queensland Raceway Ipswich 28/05/2006 Queensland 500 Club Enduro". National Software. 28 May 2006. Retrieved 1 October 2008.
  6. ^ "Queensland Raceway Ipswich 02/06/2007 Queensland 500 Club Enduro". National Software. 2 June 2007. Retrieved 1 October 2008.
  7. ^ "Queensland Raceway Ipswich 15/11/2008 Queensland 500 Club Enduro". National Software. 15 November 2008. Retrieved 15 November 2008.
  8. ^ 2001 VIP Petfoods Queensland 500 race report from www.autoweb.com.au Archived 6 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine