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Australia

Cancelled event prompts questions in Tasmania

The cancellation of a historic motorsport expo in Tasmania has raised questions regarding government funding, according to a local report.

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The Longford Grand Prix Expo was set to take place in the Tasmanian village on March 11-12 this year.

The idea was to celebrate the town's famous links to Australian motor racing, Longford's streets having hosted contemporary events between 1953 and 1968.

The seven-kilometre circuit was used for Tasman Series rounds and was the venue for the non-world championship Australian Grand Prix in 1959 and 1965.

That means it was raced on by some of the biggest local and overseas names of the era.

The expo was to receive $450,000 of tax payer funding, part of which had been paid by the state government, however it has now been cancelled.

According to a report by the ABC the government will look to recover any taxpayer money that has gone into the event now that it's not happening.

The same report says organiser DX Industries blamed the cancellation on supply chain issues and labour shortages.

Australian Racing Group, meanwhile, has stepped in to help motorsport fans and competitors left high and dry by the cancellation of the expo.

ARG has vowed to give any ticket holder or entered participant for the Longford Grand Prix Expo free entry to the Race Tasmania event on February 24-26.

That event will open the 2023 TCR Australia, S5000, Trans Am and Touring Car Masters seasons and is also government backed, with a recently-renewed deal running through to 2025.

“ARG has been made aware of the cancellation of what was promised to be a significant and exciting motorsport event for Tasmania, and recognises this is an unfortunate situation for motorsport in the state,” said ARG executive chairman John McMellan.

“Anyone who made a financial commitment to attending or participating in this event can get a free fix of motorsport a fortnight earlier and just 15 minutes south of Longford at Symmons Plains Raceway, where they will see four excellent national racing categories at AWC Race Tasmania.”

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Australia