For eleven years there has been an annual pedal prix competition in Adelaide. From less than a dozen vehicles in a car park in 1985 to one hundred and twelve teams entered in 1996, the Australian National Pedal Prix has only become larger and better. Over eleven years three different venues have been used. In 1997 a new venue - Sturt Reserve at Murray Bridge will be used.
The first event was held in the car park of the Underdale CAE on Holbrooks Road. This event was the start of a great event and generated tremendous interest. Vehicles varied considerably in sophistication and quality but the potential to get students involved in designing, making and testing were readily apparent and planning for the next event proceeded.
In 1986 the event was moved to the Road Safety Centre on Oaklands Road, Marion to cater for the increased number of teams. Rules were developed to guide teams in building vehicles so that they were safer. This site was tremendous with many bends and a hill to test both the vehicles and riders.
The popularity of the event grew and it soon became apparent that the number of entries was growing beyond the capacity of the track. As a result, in 1992 the event was moved to the Adelaide International Raceway at Virginia, SA. This site easily catered for the increased number of entries. The wider, flatter track saw records for the distance travelled in the 24 hour endurance race increase. A major disadvantage of this site has been its openness and exposure to weather. Wind, dust and an uninteresting track had the committee looking for alternatives.
1997 sees the event move to Murray Bridge where the Sturt Reserve will be sealed off and adapted for our event. It is felt that this new venue will comfortably accommodate the number of entries anticipated, provide a greater challenge for teams and provide a better atmosphere for all competitors and visitors.
The event has been renamed The Australian International Pedal Prix to reflect the range of entries and enquiries being received.
Hopefully the event will continue to grow and prosper otherwise - WHAT ELSE WILL WE HAVE TO DO IN SEPTEMBER?
NOTE: IF YOU HAVE MATERIAL THAT WOULD HELP TO PROVIDE A MORE COMPLETE HISTORY OF THE EVENT PLEASE FORWARD A COPY TO:Leon Parker