Early Adelaide 500 revival on the table

The Adelaide 500 could feasibly return to the Supercars schedule as soon as next season depending on the outcome of the upcoming state election.

Early Adelaide 500 revival on the table

The famous event, a staple of the Supercars calendar for more than two decades and a legacy of the original Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, was axed by the incumbent South Australian government last year.

The opposition immediately pounced on the move, signing a deal with Supercars to revive the street race if successful in the March 2022 election in South Australia.

It was originally expected that should that happen, the event wouldn't return to the Supercars schedule until 2023.

However, as detailed by the Castrol Motorsport News podcast this week, there is a slim chance that the Adelaide 500 could close out the 2022 season.

It appears the door has been left open to rush the event back should the Labor party win the election in March, with a season finale slot on the table.

On the recently-revealed draft 2022 schedule Sydney Motorsport Park is set to host the finale with a pair of 300-kilometre races, likely under lights. However the mid-November date means the Adelaide event could still feasibly be added.

“We have made no secret of our desire to see racing return to Adelaide,” a Supercars spokesperson said when approached by Motorsport.com.

“We will continue to monitor the viability of the event for the future.

“For now our focus is the events we announced on Sunday as part of the 2022 Repco Supercars Championship, which begins on the streets of Newcastle in March.”

As it currently stands there is no South Australia round on the calendar, with The Bend Motorsport Park also absent from the draft schedule.

However the circuit, located roughly an hour south-east of Adelaide, is the favourite to fill the current TBC for late July.

It's understood a firm deal between The Bend management, led by Sam Shahin, and Supercars is yet to be struck yet due to a number of factors.

The first is the format, The Bend having hoped to revive plans for a two-driver, pre-Bathurst 1000 race that were in place for 2020 before being de-railed by the pandemic.

The late July slot, at the peak of winter, is also thought to be considered problematic by The Bend, which promotes its own Supercars events and therefore relies heavily on getting people through the gate.

Queensland Raceway is also in the frame for the TBC round if an agreement can't be reached with The Bend. 

There have been flashpoints of tension between The Bend and Supercars in the past, particularly when the circuit was initially left off the COVID-revised version of the 2020 schedule.

Shahin blasted the category for that move, labelling it selfish and short-sighted.

As the 2020 schedule further evolved The Bend ended up hosting back-to-back rounds in the lead-up up to the season finale at Mount Panorama.

The Bend then hosted a sprint round as scheduled earlier this year, and was touted as a potential venue for another double-header later in the season as Supercars scrambled to deal with COVID-19 outbreaks in New South Wales and Victoria.

Ultimately the category decided to utilise NSW's emergence from lockdown and rounded out its season with four rounds at Sydney Motorsport Park followed by last Sunday's Bathurst 1000.

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