It’s Monday morning and the #visitcollie team are up and about early, we’re heading out to the Collie Motorplex to have a look at the facilities and in particular the track extensions and upgrades that are nearing completion.
Anna Farrell, Track Manager meets us and fills us in on what’s been happening at the track, up coming events and planned future upgrades. Coming off a huge weekend where the motorplex hosted the 2018 Ernie Hastie Memorial – the largest race meet in Western Australia outside of Perth. The track was buzzing with workers packing up and getting ready for the following weekends meet. Historic Motorcycle racing!
As we chat about the previous weekend and the ins and outs of managing a race track, we take notice of the massive whiteboard calendar outlining what’s on for the entire 2018 season – Fully booked, right up until Christmas!
Anna offers us a tour and leads us through the club rooms, medical facilities, accommodation rooms and kitchen areas. We discuss upgrades to spectator areas that are on the horizon and Anna explains that the majority of the race events are free entry for spectators. Visitors are welcome to bring a picnic or enjoy food supplied by the onsite canteen. All funds raised are put back into the local race club and track.
Recently visited by WA Premier Mark McGowan and our Sports and Recreation Minister Mick Murray to inspect the recent upgrades, made possible by a $2.97 million dollar commitment from the State Government. The funding allowed for the track to be extended from 1.6km to 2.3km and improve competitor and spectator facilities. More recently an injection of $314,000 brought the track up to national standards in order to create opportunities for major motorsport events to held in the South West. Other than Barbagallo, north of Perth, the Collie Motorplex is the only sealed race track in Western Australia.
Premier Mark McGowan was impressed with the upgrades and stated the Motorplex was fast becoming a true asset to the town and the South West.
“I’m pleased to see the Collie Motorplex becoming a huge tourism drawcard for the town, it’s great for motorsport enthusiasts and great for local businesses and great for Collie”
"Jump in, lets go for a drive"
Just when we thought our time visiting the racetrack had come to an end, our host rustled some car keys from her jacket pocket and motioned for us to jump in the tracks car. It must be said, it’s the first time either of us had actually been on a racetrack. Anna took us for a lap around the existing 1.6km circuit – giving us an insight into what its like to run the operation. After the lap we started another, this time veering off to access the new, almost completed section. With some equipment still working on the edges of the track Anna explains:
“The last lot of rain a few months ago gave us a heads up that this section of the track required more drainage works. Part of the gravel run off area was washed out and that was a great clue that we needed to reassess the area and improve it, and that’s what the guys are doing now”
We are cruising around a sweeping left hand turn when we come to a stop, our host tells us this is her favourite part of the track, its on a slight elevation affording us a nice little view down towards a sharpish right hander and the track facilities in the distance. We stop for a few photographs and a look around.
The #visitcollie crew would like to thank Anna for the opportunity to view the track upgrades and taking time out of her busy schedule to give us a peek into the fascinating world of running a racetrack. If you’d like to see what’s coming up for the rest of the 2018 calendar you can visit the Collie Motorplex’s website here.
Another great day out option in the Region
With a racing calendar packed full of events every weekend right up to Christmas, the motorplex is another great option for things to see and do in the Collie Region. With the majority of events free or some with a minimal charge it really is a great little day out. Located only 14km to the South-East of the Collie CBD it’s an easy, family friendly day out that’s really affordable. As an added bonus, the absolutely gorgeous Stockton Lake is right next door. The blue lake, famous for its water skiing, camping and that incredible azure colour, is a must see on the way.
You can read more about Stockton Lake here.