Each year when the Paradise Valley Speedway calendar is released, there is one event which thousands of fans look out for. The TWS World Invitation Superstock Championships are here and have drawn a record number of drivers.
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If Damian Orr had to guess how many laps he'd done around Paradise Valley Speedway, he'd estimate "a couple of thousand".
Having that home track advantage is something he hopes will go in his favour this weekend, entering the TWS World Invitation Superstock Championships in hot form.
Last year the champs drew a field of 103 drivers - a new record at the time. This year's event promises to be more competitive than ever with 121 drivers signed up.
Orr won the Waikato Superstock Championships earlier this season and finished fifth at the New Zealand Championships in Whanganui two weeks ago. He said the World Superstocks was an event he looked forward to every season.
"I'm geared up and ready to go, hopefully I can get in and do the job. It's the big one for Rotorua every year, it's always one we look forward to.
"We built a new car at the start of the season and it has been performing well so I'm really looking forward to giving it another crack and trying to better my ninth place finish from last year."
The World Superstocks attract drivers from all over New Zealand as well as a contingent from Great Britain. The overseas drivers automatically qualify for finals on Saturday while the rest of the field will race in heats on Friday night.
With so many drivers entered the heats are set to be more competitive than ever. There will be five groups of about 23 drivers racing in heats and only the top four from each will progress to the finals.
"This event seems to just keep getting bigger and bigger - it is awesome to see how many just keep coming every year," Orr said.
"I think it's where the track is, it's pretty central, and everyone likes coming to Rotorua as well."
He said racing at home was always an advantage but he still had to go out there and drive to the best of his abilities, especially with so much competition expected for places in the heats.
"Doing a lot more laps around Rotorua at home, it always pays off. I don't even know how many laps I would've done, probably a couple of thousand by now. Knowing your home track, you'd like to hope it's an advantage, but because it's a contact sport you always know anything can happen.
"It's going to be hard going but I have just have to press on and hope for three clean races and some stop finishes. I need to race clean but make the right moves at the right times - the right passes. It's going to be tough.
"Racing in front of that many people you have to try to put it behind you and treat it like just another race, another championship."
Last year's event attracted more than 8000 spectators and Paradise Valley Speedway secretary Sonja Hickey said similar numbers were expected this weekend.
"We've got allocated seating for the first time and we've all but sold all of that. We'll probably have between 5000-6000 on the Friday and up over 8000 again on the Saturday. It's looking better than last year and that was a record year."
She put the event's popularity and record driver numbers down to the quality of the track and the hard-working team behind the scenes.
"The facilities are really good and we've got a great team of people that run the event, it's really well run, we have great staff and I think the drivers appreciate that.
"This year is going to be very competitive. Qualifying is going to be tough because normally we'd only have three or four groups in qualifying but this year we have to run five. Just to qualify for the final is going to be really tough.
"There will be some hard racing in among that."
Racing starts at 7pm on both Friday and Saturday.