In extraordinary scenes, hundreds of fans had been lining up since the early hours of Friday morning, awaiting the 60th anniversary running of the Great Race.
Campsites sold out in record time after being made available to the general public in May, meaning around 7000 campsites are set to be filled next weekend in Bathurst.
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“Fans' enthusiasm is truly remarkable,” said Howard.
“They've been lining up since early Friday morning to secure their camping spots, which sold out within just 90 minutes.
“Approximately 7000 campsites will be filled in the coming days as we gear up for an action-packed weekend.
“The excitement will continue to build over coming days and into next week as Supercars teams prepare to hit the track for opening practice on Thursday.
“We anticipate a packed crowd right across Mount Panorama for Sunday's Great Race.
“The support and dedication of our fans make events like the Bathurst 1000 truly special.”
Testing wrapped up yesterday with the second of two straight days on-track for the Shell V-Power Racing Team's wildcard entry, which makes for a 28-car field in this year's Great Race.
Practice 1 for the Repco Supercars Championship competitors starts on Thursday, October 5 at 13:20 local time/AEDT.