WITH less than a week to go until the Newcastle 500, construction crews are racing the clock.
Fences, barriers, stands and footbridges along the circuit are taking shape as the city transforms for the three-day event, which kicks off on Friday.
Crews will be working over the weekend and up until Thursday night to apply the final touches.
When they’re done, 1481 concrete barriers, weighing almost 6000 tonnes, will have been laid down, with almost 11km of fencing installed.
The Newcastle 500 street circuit is 2.6km long.
The only tracks shorter on the current Supercars calendar are Barbagallo Raceway in Perth (2.42km) and Symmons Plains Raceway in Tasmania (2.4km).
Average speeds last year were 133km/h, with top speeds hitting 277km/h.
Teams will be here from Monday and Tuesday, and the trucks carrying the cars are expected to arrive over the next few days.
A Supercars spokesman said the resident access gates would not be closed until Friday morning, and would reopen as soon as racing is finished each day.
After the race on Saturday, Scottish rockers Simple Minds will headline this year’s Supercars concert at No.1 Sportsground, supported by Birds of Tokyo and The Delta Riggs.
Concert entry is included with same-day event ticket, with tickets still available at Ticketek.
The 2018 Supercars champion will be crowned in Newcastle.
With just 14 points separating title contenders Scott McLaughlin and Shane van Gisbergen, the championship is set for another thrilling finale.
Sunday’s race will also be the final championship race for Supercars great Craig Lowndes, who is stepping back to a co-driver role from 2019.
Don’t miss Monday’s Newcastle Herald for a souvenir Lowndes poster.
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