LEYBURN SHOWCASES MOTORSPORT HISTORY

MORE than 200 historic, classic and high-performance cars representing nine decades of Australian motorsport are expected to line up for the 18th annual “around the houses” Leyburn Sprints.

 

The event brings a festival air to the little Darling Downs town approximately 60 kilometres north-west of Warwick and is now well established as one of the best-regarded dates on the Australian historic racing calendar.

 

It’s not just the racing that attracts more than 7000 visitors every year from many parts of Queensland and even interstate.

 

The laid-back atmosphere makes everyone feel welcome. Local community organisations do everything from running the event to manning the food stalls and delivering firewood to the camping ground and tip their profits back into the town.

 

And it’s surely the only motorsport event in Australia that is centred around a pub – the 1963-licensed Royal Hotel – although the racers and drinkers are appropriately separated.

 

There’s plenty for every visitor to enjoy – without them needing to be a racing fan.

 

From Saturday morning until Sunday afternoon, the field of cars runs one at a time against the clock, each getting six or seven chances to set a fastest time on the 1.1 kilometre track around closed local streets.

 

It’s simple grass-roots fun, offering the chance to see many rare and unusual cars in action on the track and up-close in the friendly paddock

 

Off-track attractions include a Show ‘n’ Shine on Sunday with more than 50 beautiful cars on display, market stalls and motorsport souvenirs.

 

The Sprints own an extraordinary heritage, for it was just outside the township on a disused WW2 airstrip that the 1949 Australian Grand Prix was run.

 

Ticket prices are $15 per day or $25 for a weekend pass. Children under 14 are admitted free.


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