GALLERY: ADELAIDE’S SENSATIONAL STREET CIRCUIT

A banner on the circuit's main grandstand, pictured at the Race of a Thousand Years in 2000. Pic: an1images.com / Andrew Hall

THE Adelaide street circuit has been a hot topic this week.

A year on from the axing of the Adelaide 500, a push by a residents’ group to rip up the tarmac from the circuit’s permanent loop in Victoria Park angered motorsport fans.

Amid heated debate, Adelaide’s City Council ultimately voted for a plan to increase the tree canopy in the park without impacting the track, while the potential for a heritage listing is also to be investigated.

To celebrate the remarkable history and heritage of the Adelaide Parklands Circuit, V8 Sleuth takes a walk down memory lane with this special gallery.

For more great Adelaide memories, check out ‘Sensational Adelaide: An Illustrated History of the Adelaide 500’ in the V8 Sleuth Bookshop.

The 400-page collectors publication includes a year-by-year look at the 22 Adelaide 500 V8 Supercars events held, as well as a snapshot of the touring car action during the AGP era.

All images in this gallery are courtesy of the AN1 Images archive.

The Adelaide circuit was first built to bring the Formula 1 World Championship to Australia in 1985. Here Nigel Mansell leads Ayrton Senna, race winner Keke Rosberg and the rest up Wakefield Road.

The circuit wound its way from Victoria Park to the edge of the city’s East End, which provided spectacular backdrops. Here Andrea de Cesaris’ Jordan passes The Stag Hotel in 1991.

Flagman Glen Dix was another memorable part of the Grand Prix festivities. He’s waving the flag here to 1992 race winner Gerhard Berger and second-placed man Michael Schumacher.

Schumacher hams it up on the grid ahead of the final Grand Prix in Adelaide in 1995. The German sealed the previous year’s title in a controversial Adelaide finale, but already had the ’95 crown secured.

Adelaide’s street circuit was reborn in 1999 for V8 Supercars. The Sensational Adelaide 500 immediately set a new standard for domestic motorsport events that other states attempted to replicate.

The circuit fired into life twice in 2000; April’s Clipsal 500 followed by what proved a one-off ‘Race of a Thousand Years’ American Le Mans Series race on New Year’s Eve that ended in the darkness.

An overhead image from the 2002 Clipsal 500 that depicts the circuit’s proximity to the CBD. This was one of many Adelaide races held in sweltering conditions.

Mark Skaife races past the circuit’s temporary pit building in 2003 on his way to victory for the Holden Racing Team. A later push to erect a permanent pit structure in the parklands was ultimately quashed.

The V8s raced on a shorter version of the circuit, using Bartels Road instead of Rundle Road. This is Will Davison in 2006, passing through the Turn 8 sweeper that connected Bartels and Dequetteville Terrace.

The late Formula 1 commentary legend Murray Walker visited Adelaide for each AGP at the venue and later became a regular visitor to the Clipsal 500, acting as an ambassador for the event.

Efforts to continually improve the event included the addition of shade over the grandstands and tweaks to the format. This is Craig Lowndes in the Saturday evening twilight race in 2014.

Scott McLaughlin takes the chequered flag at the end of the 2020 Superloop 500. Sadly, the event was dramatically axed by the South Australian Government eight months later.