Big Crowd At Parade Of Horsepower Starts Build-Up To Procar Series At Queensland Raceway

UP to 10,000 people crammed Brisbane's Park Road restaurant row yesterday for the inaugural Pink Ribbon Parade of Horsepower, which featured drivers and cars competing in next weekend's 2001 PROCAR Series motor race meeting at Queensland Raceway.

Actors, dancers and singers supplied the entertainment as the public inspected racing Ferraris, Jaguars, BMWs, Subarus, Fords and even a trio of the latest VW Beetles prepared for the track.

The road was closed for the afternoon and teams made their headquarters at restaurants.

The Pink Ribbon Parade of Horsepower was organised by motor racing promoter PROCAR Australia and the Park Road Traders Association.

Raffles and an auction of sports memorabilia raised $7000 for the Pink Ribbon appeal, run by the Wesley Hospital Kim Walters Choices Program.

Traders spokesman Joe Virzi, of La Dolce Vita cafe, said: ³This was one of the most popular activities we've ever staged in Park Road, which has a reputation for attracting glamorous cars.

"Park Road was closed to traffic for five hours and during that time the street was packed with people and there was rarely a spare seat in any of the restaurants. I estimate up to 10,000 people came to Park Road in the course of the afternoon."

The 2001 PROCAR Series meeting on Saturday and Sunday will host rounds of six national motor racing series, including the Australian Nations Cup Championship, Century Batteries Australian GT Production Car Championship, V8 BRute Muster and Australian Formula 3 Championship.

Drivers and cars will be on show again on Thursday, from 5.30 pm at Village Fair, Toowoomba and from 6.30 pm at Booval Fair, Ipswich.

Race day at Queensland Raceway, on the Cunningham Highway near Ipswich, also will host a ute muster for owners of roadgoing utes there to watch the V8 BRute Muster races.