Competitor feedback leads to Gold City track changes

After making its Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship debut in 2023, the overall distance for Gold City 450 course has now increased.

Taking on feedback from competitors following its first appearance on the calendar, the North Queensland Off Road Racing Association has made a handful of changes to the track to improve the overall experience, with one of the more notable changes being the addition of 15 kilometres.

The change came after the Kingham Family, who owns the neighbouring Plum Tree Station, expressed their desire to get involved with the event, which allowed organisers to extend the track into the family’s property.

The new 15 kilometres will be laid out differently to the rest of the course, with the section made up of long straights and flat surfaces, allowing crews to go hard and fast, while also being able to take a mental break.

There have also been multiple sections removed and new ones added to the original course, and event organiser Don Young believed these changes would be beneficial to crews.

Photos: DJH Creative

“The plan was always to get more distance for the event, and now that we have had more time to prepare, we have been able to make these changes,” Young said.

“And because we were in the wet season, there were some sections that didn’t offer much, so we have removed those and made additions to the good sections, which includes a spectacular new jump across Mafeking Road.

“We have also taken out five kilometres of tight turns from the old track and made sure that a lot of the track is 10 metres wide.

“A big thanks to the Kingham Family, who came on board and offered their property after last year’s event. They were impressed with what we were trying to achieve and wanted to help out, which is a great result.

“I am hopeful these new changes will be favourable for crews. They should get multiple opportunities to recharge now during the event.”

The new course is another significant change the event has had implemented since its debut, with the shift from March to the end of August expected to alleviate the discomfort of competitors due to heat.

The Gold City 450 takes place in Charters Towers on 30 August – 2 September and serves as the fourth round of the 2024 Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship season.