Above: Core-Drilling at Barbagallo. Image: TIM RILEY

A 70 plus metre chicane at Turn three will greet riders on the return to Barbagallo Raceway of motorbike racing activity in 2019.

The first resurface since 2004 of the 2.41km circuit, Western Australia’s premier motor racing venue, currently is underway and scheduled for completion end of January.  The track is now closed, reopening for the WA Sporting Car Club’s celebrations for the fiftieth anniversary of Wanneroo Raceway on March 2-3. 

The chicane is the result of safety concerns, compounded by some very sad motorbike incidents, which saw motorcycle activity shut down at the Neerabup facility.   Bikes returned to Barbagallo for the first time in August when John Tetley‘s Track Action and the Club were able to safely reintroduce non-competitive bike activity. 

The obvious next step was to get motorcycle racing back on track, which required further work on the circuit.  General Manager Andrew Stachewicz led this project, appointing Calibre Consultants to the task of designing a safer T3 for bikes. 

The chicane will make little difference to car racing – the high speed Esses will remain.   Although there always the prospect of wily organisers of events like Point-to-Point taking advantage of the change to the track configuration! 

But bikes will be slowed significantly by the right-handed chicane as the track rises into T3, blending it back into the main circuit on the right-hand side entry to T4.  That work will be undertaken during the course of the larger resurfacing project in January. 

The scale diagram suggests the chicane is 70-75 metres in length.

The scope of works is wider than just a resurface and the cost is significant.  But the Club has worked hard to put itself in the fortunate position of being able to fully fund the resurfacing project.  Glen Melling, Sean Supanz and Tim Riley (Chair) were tasked with overseeing this vital and complex project.   Sean incidentally, was at the helm of the successful 2004 resurface. 

The positive actions the Club management has taken during the past 12 months by tackling head-on and resolving the testing issues on its plate has placed the WASCC in a strong position for the foreseeable future in the face of the State Government’s extraordinary Strategy document.

The WA Sporting Car Club should be allowed to now get on with what they do best and have done much better than most – apart from a few hiccups – during the past 90 years.

Click on the link below for detailed diagrams:

Barbagallo Chicane

EDITED by AC