- Warwick currently being extended from eighth-mile to full quarter mile
- Upgrades also include timing boards and renovated buildings
- Track should be re-opening by early next year
UPDATE, September 13: Work has begun pouring the brand new concrete for the eighth mile section of the track at Warwick Dragway, following delays due to poor weather and COVID-19 preventing access to interstate contractors.
“It has put us back a few months, but I knew once we get going we’d get the ball rolling and start kicking goals,” said Matt Loy, committee member for Warwick Dragway.
At this stage the plan is still to re-open the Queensland-based venue early next year once the track upgrades are complete.
Along with a new strip, there will also be a much-needed set of timing boards, as well as upgraded lighting and a new PA system.
“We’ll finish pouring the 270 metres of concrete for the eighth mile by the end of next week, but then we still need to pour the 740 metres of hot mix tarmac for the quarter mile and braking area,” said Matt.
“We ended up finding a contractor from Brisbane to fill in for the laser stuff after calling 50 people. But we’re using local concreters, and once we get the track poured we can start having working bees and getting close to opening up early next year.”
“We would like to thank Mayor Vic Pennisi, CEO Dave Burgess and the whole of Southern Downs Regional Council, as well as our club volunteers that have been helping with the progress so far,” said Matt.
You can find updates about working bees and progress on the tracks works on Warwick Dragway’s Facebook group here.
The story to here
August 25: South-East Queensland’s beloved Warwick Dragway eighth-mile track is midway through its transformation into a full quarter-mile, along with major upgrades to facilities, after funding for the project was announced late last year.
In December last year, AU$1.9 million in funding was announced by the Commonwealth and Queensland Governments for the upgrade works for Warwick, with work commencing in June this year.
The Southern Downs Regional Council and the Warwick Dragway committee worked with David Littleproud MP, Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia to get the funding across the line for the project.
The track upgrades include replacing the old eighth-mile track with fresh concrete, which will also have an extra 800 metres of asphalt track added to make it a full quarter-mile and include the necessary run-off area.
Other improvements include the much-needed addition of timing boards, re-paving the return road, and a renovated starting area and timing system. The timing tower will also cop a renovation, a new PA system is going in and the toilet and shower blocks will be brought up to standard.
Unfortunately, progress on the track extension has been slowed by bad weather and COVID. “We’ve probably had the wettest winter we’ve had in 10 years; it’s been raining for the past eight weeks,” says Matt Loy, committee member for Warwick Dragway.
“The main focus at this stage is to get the new asphalt poured and the concrete done for the eighth-mile,” Matt continues. “All the start area has already been ripped up and the barriers are gone, but wet weather means we can’t get the asphalt down, and interstate contractors being unable to come here has stopped us doing the concrete. But we’re using local community help and businesses where we can, and the support has been pretty incredible so far.”
Even with the lengthening to a quarter-mile track, Matt explains that Warwick is still focusing on being a top-notch eighth-mile track. “All our club events and stuff like the Six-Banger Nats will stay as eighth-mile, but now we’ll have the ability to run as a full quarter for certain events if needed,” he says.
Matt says that with the delays it’s unlikely the track will be open again this year, but he has high hopes for 2022. “Once we get the whole track poured and the walls back up for the eighth-mile, we’ll start running eighth-mile events again, which will hopefully be around March next year.
“Once the track starts up, we’ll continue renovating everything else as we go, but that’s the main goal right now.”
In the meantime, local racers have been getting their fix at Carnell Raceway in Stanthorpe, Ironbark Raceway in Roma, and of course at Willowbank.
We can’t wait to get back to Warwick next year for Drag Challenge Weekend and other awesome events. We’re stoked this community-run track is getting the love it deserves, and its final form will be mega.