The count down is on to the year’s biggest party, as organisers prepare for huge crowds ahead of this weekend’s Gold Coast 600.

Preparations stepped up a gear today with the venue hosting a special birthday celebration.

Charlotte Paterson reports.

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As workers put the finishing touches to the track, this year’s revamped Gold Coast V8 Supercars race is shaping-up to be the hottest ticket in town.

With preparation-time reduced by seven weeks, and a lot less traffic congestion from previous years, it appears the new-look event will be the most successful yet.

Brett Murray, Gold Coast 600 Communications Manager: “Traditionally, you know, people buy tickets later to major events. We’ve seen that over the last few years, and we’ll see that again this week as people prepare for this event and realise, hey this show’s on and it’s going to be one hell of a time.”

And with some of the biggest names in Australia’s rock history set to perform as part of the off-track entertainment, tickets priced at $130 offer good value for money and a mix of entertainment.

Organisers say with the shortened circuit, the crowd will be able to see up to 40 per cent more of the action. And with three days of racing and entertainment in store, ticket sales to the event have already exceeded those of previous years.

International Indycar driver Alex Tagliani, who arrived in Australia last week, celebrated his birthday with Australian wife Bronte at the Gold Coast’s Q1 building today.

Tagliani, who is matched with Australian driver Jason Bargwanna, said it’s good to be back on the Gold Coast, and is ready to take-on the challenge of driving a V8.

Alex Tagliani, International driver: “So it’s all about the car set-up, and hopefully, like, I’ll be able to assist Jason, you know? He has some unfinished business here. He’s been on the poles in the past so hopefully we’ll give him a good car, and, you know, he’ll put it up front and I can do my job as a co-driver.”

Charlotte Paterson, QUT News.