An important part of Australian culture is watching cars drive around and around. The coolest cars in the world are Holden V8’s, who compete against less cool cars in a racing circuit called “V8 Supercars”. V8 engines look like this:
They are called “V8” because they have 8 cylinders in a ‘V’ shape, with 4 either side. V8 engines are not so popular in Japan, but they are very popular in Australia because they produce a lot of power and sound cool. Holden and Ford are the two most popular teams in V8 Supercars, but recently Nissan, Volvo, and Mercedes-Benz have joined the race too. There are several different races over the course of the season, but the most famous is Bathurst 1000, held on Mount Panorama in New South Wales. It is know as “The Great Race” and is watched by crowds of up to 200,000 people, as well as millions of people on TV. Drivers attempt to complete 161 laps of the Mount Panorama Circuit, which totals 1,000km and takes about 7 hours.
The greatest Bathurst driver of all time is Peter Brock, who won Bathurst nine times. Unfortunately, he died in a racing accident in 2006, so the prize for winning Bathurst is now called the Peter Brock Trophy.
State of Origin
The greatest of all Australian sporting events is State of Origin. It is a rugby league game played three times a year between Queensland and New South Wales; state against state, mate against mate. Rugby league players play for different clubs all around Australia, but for State of Origin, the best players return to the state they were born in, their state of origin, and make a super-team for Queensland and New South Wales. Players who are on the same club team often play against each other, so the level of passion in State of Origin games is very high. The first tackle of the game is always a very hard hit. The series used to be very evenly matched, but in recent years Queensland has dominated the State of Origin, winning every series since 2006, apart from 2014.