AUSTIN (KXAN) - Another championship race is coming to Austin. Wednesday, Circuit of the Americas announced a five-year deal starting in 2013 to bring V8 Supercars to the United States for the first time.
"While Texas has established itself as the nation's place for business, it's quickly becoming the nation's place for big sporting events, as well," said Gov. Rick Perry. "V8 Supercars now joins Formula One, MotoGP, NASCAR, the NFL, NBA, NCAA and USTA, among the many that have chosen Texas to host major events in the last few years. This is more good news for the Lone Star State, and will provide a significant boost to the economy of Central Texas."
V8 Supercars is Australia's most popular motorsports series and involves high-performance touring cars, similar to American NASCAR . V8 Supercars will join the Formula 1 U.S. Grand Prix, which begins in 2012 and MotoGP World Championship, beginning in 2013, as international events to use the new 3.4-mile track southeast of town.
"We're fortunate because we know they were bid on by three or four different cities," said Circuit of the Americas founding partner Tavo Hellmund. "We're just fortunate that this is the place. I feel like we have the two-wheel world championship, the four-wheel championship, and now we have the premiere touring car series in the world. So, I think it's a great addition."
Formerly the Australian Touring Car Championship, the current series was devised in 1993 and branded as "V8 Supercars" in 1997. The cars are based on modified versions of Australia's two most popular – and most rivaled – passenger cars, the Ford Falcon and Holden Commodore.
V8 Supercars continues as one of Australia's largest sports both in attendance and television viewership. In 2010, approximately 1.7 million people attended V8 Supercars events, including V8 Supercars' 20 millionth spectator at the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 .
In 2011, V8 Supercars was granted ‘international status' by the world governing body of motorsport, the FIA, which enables it to race at up to six international destinations outside of Australia and New Zealand each year, elevating the sport to the top tier of all categories worldwide.
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