THE Easter long weekend is right around the corner, meaning we’re not far off from the very first Rockynats kicking off in Queensland.
Much like the beloved Red CentreNATS in Alice Springs, Rockynats on 2-5 April will see the entire city of Rockhampton play host to one of the biggest car festivals in the country.
“For Rockynats, the whole town will host this event,” says Summernats communications director Adrian Hodgson. “It is about bringing the fun of Street Machine Summernats to another part of Australia.”
Being a Summernats-run event means there’s a whole bunch of cool stuff on the menu, and with 1500 bikes and cars entered, it’s set to be a debut of epic proportions. Here’s 10 reasons to be excited for Rockynats!
1. STREET RACING
DID someone say street racing? That’s right! There’ll be proper eighth-mile, heads-up, pro-tree, no-prep, drag racing in the CBD! There’s two classes; the first bracket 6.37-7.63, and the second 7.63 and slower. Due to ANDRA regs, no cars faster than 6.37 will be hitting the drags, but with qualifying on Saturday and 150 cars from each class racing on Sunday, it should still be one hell of a show!
2. ELITE UNVEILS
THE main car show will be at the Rocky Showgrounds, and there’s also a curated show ‘n’ shine at Quay Street, with 150 different cars on both Saturday and Sunday. There’ll be a bunch of new cars debuted, including reigning Red CentreNATS Grand Champion Graeme Miller’s new EH panel van!
THE burnout game is going to be massive, with $11,000 in prize money up for grabs and three Burnout Masters tickets for Summernats 34. There’ll be a fully loaded field for the Masters, with the likes of Phil Kerjean (TUFFST), Warren Gersekowski (1TUFHG) and a whole host of other big names duking it out. The second tier Burnout Championship will be running as well, with an extended program for Rockynats giving everyone two qualifying runs.
4. BIKE BURNOUTS
YEP, there’s also going to be motorbike burnouts! Two-wheeled smoky action will be taking place at the City Hall motorbike precinct. There’ll also be a show ‘n’ shine area at Alma Street where entrants can park up and/or have their bikes judged, and the Thunder Run will take place on a designated route from the CBD on Sunday morning.
5. STREET PARADE
OVER 800 of Australia’s toughest bikes and cars are expected to take part in the Good Friday city cruise. Kicking off at 11:30am, entrants will cruise from Rockhampton Showgrounds through the CBD, along Quay Street and back to the showground.
DRIFTING has proved to be a popular attraction at Summernats and MotorEx in recent years, and Rockynats will also have its share of sideways action. There’ll be drifting competitions being held with some big local names, and the neat part is you don’t just have to spectate. Passenger rides by the Drift Cadet crew will be sold on site all weekend.
THE dyno competitions at Summernats have seen some big-time power figures racked up over the years, and we expect Rockynats to be no different. Insane Performance will be running the show with a brand new hub dyno and are ready for anything. Entrants are advised to book early to get a spot.
THE Rockynats CBD precinct will be pumping all weekend. Whenever they’re not cruising, racing or skidding, there’s a ton of room in this precinct to park up and chill, so there’ll always be something to gawk at while you enjoy liquid refreshments and Rocky-bred beef!
9. GRAND CHAMPION
IT WOULDN’T be a Nats event without a Grand Champ award, the battle of the best in show and go. Pre-judging will be done during scrutineering earlier in the weekend and the competitors will battle it out in the driving events on Sunday in an effort to claim the top gong and $5000 cash.
10. SHOWGROUND ACTIVITIES
AS WELL as the killer talent on offer in the elite and show ‘n’ shine areas, the Rockhampton Showgrounds will be flat-chat with trade exhibitions, carnival rides and food and drink vendors to keep all members of the family happy. There’s also a great line-up of live music, including Thirsty Merc.