Saturday night's Supercars race at Sydney Motorsport Park could make or break a championship for the top four runners and riders. For the first time in 21 years the behemoths of tin-top racing will be dueling under lights.
The Sydney Supernight 300 event, to give it its official name, will be run over 300 kilometres funnily enough, and the kicker is it's worth 300 points. Some will say that's the same amount of points up for grabs at Bathurst so what's the difference?
The difference is that at Bathurst it's a long race and you can get a bit of redemption, even in a damaged car. The thing for this race, is that hard fought gains so far in the season can evaporate over night in a race that doesn't have the reputation and kudos of Bathurst.
For example, a mistake by Scott McLaughlin will see his 131-point advantage disappear up in smoke. Couple this with a win for Jamie Whincup will see the third placed Aussie scythe his 451-point deficit to something quite manageable for the rest of the season.
It could also mean a good result for David Reynolds if McLaughlin and fellow Kiwi Shane van Gisbergen mess up allowing the Erebus driver right back in the mix. Fun and games for sure especially when nobody has any empirical data about running at night from any track. I'd hate to be an engineer trying to work out a strategy for a cold track, dense night air, a dewy track and artificial light for the drivers to cope with.
The organisers of the championship have laden on another interesting surprise for fans of motorsport. They've invited the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia series to race against the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia folks.
This is the third invitational race between the two series. During the first event at Sydney in 2016, Porsche Carrera Cup Australia took wins in both classes, but Porsche Carrera Cup Asia reciprocated at Sepang International Circuit in 2017 after taking out both winning spots.
What I'm interested in watching is the return of Chris Van der Drift to Australian racing. The local Porsche drivers will think they have an advantage, but Van der Drift is no stranger to Sydney. He raced at Sydney Motorsport Park with the Supercars back in 2017.
The Kiwi also leads the series from Philip Hamprecht with another New Zealander Will Bamber sitting close behind in third. Van der Drift is an interesting and highly talented race car driver having competed in just about everything you can think of. He's had success in, this may take some time, Formula BMW ADAC, Formula Renault 2.0 Eurocup, International Formula Masters, GP2 Asia Series, A1 Grand Prix, Formula Renault 3.5 Series, Superleague Formula, Auto GP World Series, International GT Open, both the Blancpain Sprint and Endurance Series, Supercars, Chinese GT3 Championship and now the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia.
He is fact the defending Porsche Carrera Cup Asia champion after also winning in 2015. I reckon there will be a few locals who might just be in for a bit of a surprise as to just how fast Van der Drift is.
One more Kiwi we can't forget this weekend. Nick Cassidy and co-driver Ryo Hirakawa are contesting the fifth round of the Japanese Super GT at the Fuji 500 event. After a less than stellar result last time out the pair have slipped to fourth on the point's table and will be looking for redemption.