News 3 May 2024

MXGP confirmed for Australian return in Darwin from 2025

Five-year agreement will feature MXGP, MX2 and WMX at Hidden Valley.

Image: Supplied.

MXGP will make its long-anticipated return to Australian soil from 2025 in a landmark five-year agreement that will see Infront Moto Racing host a world championship round on a purpose-built track at Darwin’s Hidden Valley Motor Sports Complex.

After a 24-year absence, the FIM Motocross World Championship – including the MX1, MX2 and WMX categories – will be brought back to Australia in collaboration with the Northern Territory state government’s NT Major Events.

Spanning between 2025-2029 during the month of September on a date still to be announced, Motorcycling Australia (MA) has been instrumental in MXGP’s return. It’s understood that Infront Moto Racing CEO David Luongo met with MA CEO Peter Doyle in the Top End at the beginning of March and the deal quickly came together from there.

“We are really excited to bring the MXGP to Australia and to Darwin, which marks a triumphant return to this vibrant country,” commented Luongo. “The anticipation among Australian fans to get their grand prix is unparalleled, as they have been waiting and vocal about a round in their homeland for many years now.

“Additionally, hosting the event in Australia not only solidifies its status as a major player in the global motocross scene, but also highlights our commitment to showcasing this thrilling sport to fans worldwide and extending the overseas rounds. We look forward to witnessing the immense enthusiasm and support from both local and international fans as Australia will becomes part of the MXGP calendar from 2025 onwards.”

In addition to a national support class, selected wildcard entries from the Australian ProMX Championship will be on-track among the world championship regulars. The late Andrew McFarlane, as well as the likes of Michael Byrne and Chad Reed, made an impact when grand prix competition was last in Australia at Broadford over two decades ago in 2000 and 2001.

“Motorcycling Australia is delighted to see the FIM Motocross World Championship make its long-awaited return down under,” said Doyle. “Motocross racing at the highest level is electrifying and I can’t wait to see the world’s best riders battling it out with Australia’s emerging ProMX stars in Darwin.

“It will be fast and furious from start to finish, with local and international fans in for an absolute treat. I’d like to congratulate the Northern Territory Government’s Northern Territory Major Events Company and Infront Moto Racing on forming this new partnership, with Motorcycling Australia providing all the support it can to make the MXGP round in Darwin a resounding success.”

NT Major Events CEO Suzana Bishop added: “This is big – the MXGP is an incredibly popular and high-profile major sporting event and to be able to host it here in the Territory is a real coup. It’s also incredible to be showcasing the women’s event, which has never before been held in Australia.

“The MXGP will extend the calendar of major events in the Northern Territory, boosting tourism and local business. Not only are thousands of Australian fans expected to attend the inaugural Darwin round, but a huge contingent of international visitors will also make the journey as the city becomes the epicentre of world motocross.

“This high-profile international event of the calibre of MXGP will not only assist to highlight the Northern Territory’s extraordinary natural beauty globally – the iconic Uluru at the top of the list – but also build on the Top End’s already enviable reputation as an international tourist mecca and a great place to call home.”

Construction will begin soon on the international-standard motocross track at the multi-purpose Hidden Valley facility, which already boasts a 2.87km road circuit, in addition to a drag-strip, speedway and karting track. The MXGP track will be located on an undulating section of land north-west of the road racing circuit.

Australian riders have a rich history in grand prix motocross, from the pioneering Jeff Leisk (500cc runner-up in 1989), through to Reed (250cc runner-up in 2001) and McFarlane (MX2 runner-up in 2005). The Lawrence brothers – Hunter and Jett – both spent time in the GP paddock prior to arriving in the United States, while current ProMX racers Dean Ferris, Jed Beaton, Todd Waters, Wilson Todd and Nathan Crawford all have full-time MXGP experience.