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Racing to return to Adelaide

ADELAIDE, the former home of the Australian Grand Prix, is obviously missing having racing cars on the streets and last week the city announced plans to run two 250km events for V8 touring cars in April next year. The racing will take place on a modified version of the old Grand Prix track and will be known as the Sensational Adelaide 500. It will be a round of the Shell Australian Touring Car Championship.

The local government hopes that the event will attract as many as 50,000 spectators and that they will bring in millions of dollars to help boost the local economy. The deal is for five years, which will give the city a race until the end of the yearÊ2003.

The state is funding the purchase of the necessary infrastructure, including barriers, bridges and grandstands - the old equipment having been sold to Melbourne when the race moved in 1996. Such an investment could lead to Adelaide making a new bid for a Grand Prix in the future - although Melbourne has tied up the deal until the end of the 2006 season.

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