As drivers prepare for Gold Coast 600, many have taken the time out to pay their respects to their race colleague Dan Wheldon who was killed in the Indy 300 in Las Vegas earlier in the week.

The death has badly shaken the Indy community.

Vivien Von Drehnen reports.


Preparations are well underway for the three day Gold Coast event, but drivers are still coming to terms with the death of Indy car driver Dan Wheldon.

Craig Lowndes, Three-time V8 Supercars Champion: “As race drivers, whether you knew Dan or not, it’s sort of a bit of a wake up call, you know a reality check of what motor racing’s all about.”

Wheldon’s death has hit the Indy car community on a personal level but it has also shaken up the driver pairings.

Danish racer Allan Simonsen will replace Tony Kanaan, who was a close friend of Wheldon.

Craig Lowndes, Three-time V8 Supercar Champion: “And of course all of the international drivers that have come out to help us out this weekend, you know most of them probably knew him, some were very good friends with him, so it’s a pretty sad time for all those guys as well.”

Ahead of Friday’s practice session, three of the five Indy car drivers from the fatal Las Vegas race have confirmed they’ll drive this weekend

Some of the drivers threw off the shadow of Wheldon’s death to give the fans a bit of light relief before the big race.

Craig Lowndes enjoyed the light-hearted beach warm up but he’s under no illusions about the challenge ahead.

Craig Lowndes, Three-time V8 Supercar Champion: “For us as race drivers, as I said, it’s a bit more of an element of a challenge to get the cars around there without scraping the walls.”

The Armor All 600 is the third endurance race on the V8 supercars calandar and runs from Friday through to Sunday.

Vivien von Drehnen QUT NEWS.