Despite the indisputable popularity of motor sport at Victoria Park, many people question the disruption and alienation caused by these events, and the legitimacy of their use of the Park Lands.
The idea to attract a round of the international Formula One Grand Prix to Adelaide was first conceived in 1983. Early designs of the proposed street circuit did not include the Park Lands, but Victoria Park was added to the proposal in order to better ‘sell’ Adelaide to the television cameras. Despite concerns raised over disruption to residents and the environment, engine noise, traffic disruption and the ever-lingering possibility of additional permanent buildings in the Park Lands, State Parliament passed the SA Motor Sports Act in 1984, allowing the building of a permanent track.
The Adelaide Grand Prix was an incredibly popular event, three times winning the Formula One Race Promoters' Trophy as the best run Formula One Grand Prix of the season. As the last race of the annual Formula One season, Adelaide saw both the 1986 and 1994 Championship decided on its circuit.
In 1996, the Australian Formula One Grand Prix moved to Melbourne; a deal over which many South Australians still feel ill will.
Since 1999, the Adelaide street circuit has hosted one annual round of the Australian V8 Supercars championship, each March. While the event itself is restricted to four days, construction and deconstruction of temporary buildings including grandstands, pit lane, and corporate boxes usually takes five months: from December to May.