Townsville local Madison Dunston, 20, will take on the ECB SuperUtes Series during the Townsville 400 next weekend. Picture: Shae Beplate.
The motorsport facility, which would be built at Calcium, is expected to cost $23 million, with the organisation asking for $18.5 million from the Federal and State governments. Stage 1 of DriveIT NQ, has secured $5 million in federal funding, with Herbert MP Phil Thompson promising during the election campaign that the LNP Government would commit $7 million more. DriveIT NQ chair Pat Driscoll said he had recently spoken to Mr Thompson and felt “comfortable” the money would be delivered in the upcoming financial year. Mr Driscoll said he felt the same way about the State Government’s recent $5 million investment to build a crucial road intersection needed to access the DriveIT NQ facility.
“We need to get the facility fully functional because not only will it bring economic benefit, it will provide opportunity for local talented people such as Maddy,” he said. “We’ve signed contracts and we are in final design stages for our first piece of infrastructure out there that is spending the first $5 million that we’ve got, which is a large vehicle manoeuvring area.” Mr Thompson said the project was close to “everyone’s heart in North Queensland” and was essential for the region. “It has a few different elements; it has driver safety, a place for car enthusiasts to go to and it’s also a place that will create jobs.” Mr Thompson called on the State Government to pitch in funds beyond $5 million for the intersection and commit to paying for a part of DriveIT NQ.