The Virgin Australia Supercars Championship has been added to the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour weekend, which will see the popular touring car series provisionally conclude its 2020-21 season at Mt. Panorama.
Confirmed by Supercars on Sunday, the Feb. 5-7 event is now slated to include the national championship as part of its reshuffled season due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Initial reports in Australian media indicated that the GT3 enduro, which has served as the traditional season-opener for the Intercontinental GT Challenge powered by Pirelli, would be canceled, although that so far does not appear to be the case.
A statement from IGTC indicates the event remains “subject to change and international travel restrictions.”
Australia is currently under a full travel ban that prohibits visitors from entering the country or its own citizens from leaving, in an effort to contain and prevent the COVID-19 virus from spreading.
That restriction is understood to likely be in place through at least the end of this year.
Supercars, which serves as the promoter of the Bathurst 12H, is understood to have chosen the event due to contractual agreements to end its season in New South Wales.
Supercars CEO Sean Seamer said that the series’ second event at Mt. Panorama will run to a unique format.
“We certainly wouldn’t want to try and replicate the Bathurst 1000,” he said.
“There’s a tremendous opportunity going to Bathurst a second time, but tremendous risk as well. So we’re going to have to be innovative and make sure it’s different.”