The Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix kicks off next weekend on Phillip Island and brings with it plenty of things to see and do.
Don’t worry if you haven’t got a ticket to see the racing, there is plenty going on off the track as well.
Cowes will come to life during the MotoGP, with free entertainment and activities over the extended weekend. The bottom part of Thompson Avenue will become a licensed festival zone on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings, featuring a superscreen and stage, showing race highlights, including a replay of the MotoGP race, as well as plenty of live music.
There will be an official MotoGP opening by Mayor, Cr Brett Tessari and the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix CEO, Andrew Westacott at 6.30pm on Thursday, 24 October. A Traditional Welcome to Country Smoking Ceremony will be performed before interviews with past riders including Wayne Gardner.
Bass Coast Mayor, Cr Brett Tessari, encourages everyone to get involved with the event across the weekend.
“The MotoGp weekend is full of incredible events, both on and off the track. The Island will come alive with plenty of free family friendly activities, entertainment and fun,” Cr Tessari said.
The free activities kick off on Thursday, 24 October, when the17thannual Barry Sheene Ride, featuring 500 riders, passes through Wonthaggi at around 12.45pm and stops in at San Remo at around 1.30pm. It is great fun to watch and wave as the riders go by.
If you want to get a taste of the action at the track, Bass Coast residents are eligible for free general admission to the track on Friday, 25 October by showing proof of residency at the Gate 1 ticket box. After a day at the track, there will be live entertainment in Cowes, starting with local performer Bern Carol at 6.00pm followed by Rehash at 9.00pm.
The activities begin early on Saturday, 26 October with the Classic on Cowes vintage motorcycle display from 9.00am at the Jetty Triangle. At 11.30am, watch around 2,000 riders converge on Cowes for the final stage of the Cranbourne GP Run. The Cowes main stage will have live entertainment for much of the day with Daniel Lunn at 6.00pm and Flame Trees headlining at 9.15pm. The extended licenced outdoor area will remain open until 1.00am.
On Race Day (Sunday), the Cowes main stage will come back to life with a replay of the 2019 MotoGP race shown on the superscreen at 7.00pm, followed by live music from The Times, who will play from 8.00pm to 11.00pm, when the entertainment finishes.
The Royal Australian Air Force will be conducting flying displays near the Grand Prix Circuit over the weekend. The Roulettes will perform an aerial display from 4.15pm to 4.30pm on Saturday, 26 October and another display between 2.25pm and 2.40pm on Sunday, 27 October. The timing of the displays will be subject to weather conditions. These displays, while thrilling to watch, can be loud and disruptive to animals so please ensure you keep your pets safe during these times.
The weekend of events may create traffic congestion and Council thanks residents and visitors for their patience. From Friday to Sunday, Gap Road south of Back Beach Road will be closed to traffic, and Gap Road north of Back Beach Road will have restricted access from Ventnor Beach Road between 7.30am and 7.30pm. Gap Road residents will have access via Phillip Island Road at all times.
On Sunday, 27 October Back Beach Road will operate as one way only from Beachcomber Avenue to the circuit, between 6.30am and midday. Later in the day, from 2.00pm to 6.00pm, the one way will change direction, operating from the circuit to Phillip Island Road, Melbourne bound.
The blue line will be in operation on Phillip Island Road between Back Beach Road and the Bass Highway merge on Sunday, 27 October from 3.00pm to 7.00pm.
Traffic on Phillip Island Road can become extremely busy on Monday, when many of the event goers and workers leave the Island. If possible, please avoid travel on Phillip Island Road from 9.00am until around 1.00pm.