Supercars to celebrate Indigenous Round in Darwin

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Supercars to celebrate Indigenous Round in Darwin

The Aussie category is set to follow the lead of major ball codes the Australian Football League and the National Rugby League and dedicate a round to celebrating Indigenous culture.

The Darwin Triple Crown, to be held at the Hidden Valley circuit in mid-June, is the preferred event for the Indigenous Round, with the idea having originally come from Northern Territory Major Events.

The theme will add to a bumper Darwin event that has a unique undercard featuring a drag racing meet on the Friday night and a round of the Australian Superbike Championship across the weekend. 

Supercars teams will be encouraged to run Indigenous-inspired liveries and the series will work with local communities on a number of appropriate activations. 

“We’re working with the promoter for Darwin to become out Indigenous round,” confirmed Supercars Chief Operating Officer Shane Howard. 

“We’re working through a number of activations with the promoter, which I think is a really cool thing to do. There’s a lot of interest and support from our teams. 

“Some teams have done it before, but we want to have a more unified approach. We think we can do a good job of it across all levels of the sport. 

“It’s been a fantastic success for AFL and other footy codes. [NT Events boss] Tim [Watsford] raised it with us and asked if we’d consider supporting that, and we embraced it.

“The Territory did a number one job during COVID. There was a lot going on at that time and they strongly supported us. The [2020] event was delayed by a week, we did the back-to-back events, and they gave us strong support with our teams being located there over a longer period of time. It’s a really solid relationship and I think they’re being innovative with their programme and supports. And we want to support that with the Indigenous Round.”

While unlike the AFL and NRL there are no Indigenous athletes in Supercars, Howard says there are already ideas of how to connect with the community.

He is also expecting the new Racing Together initiative, which has the backing of a number of Supercars team bosses, to play a role in the round.

“We’d like to introduce Indigenous people to the event, to our sport, to the teams and work with the community,” he said. “We want to bring awareness of the indigenous people and help with sport. 

“The teams are already embracing that. We’re getting good feedback. 

“We’ll have our drivers get involved with meeting the community. We’re just working through those opportunities and how that can be rolled out. 

“I think it will be similar to what AFL has done. We’ve identified some Indigenous kids racing karts and we can support that. Our guys are their heroes so we want to bring people together. 

“It’s about everyone having a better understanding of the Indigenous community in Darwin. They welcome us to come and race there and we want to support that.”

The Darwin Triple Crown will take place on June 19-20.

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