AS in past years, many Redlands motorsport fans will make the short trip to Queensland Raceway near Ipswich for this weekend's championship round.
This is one of two V8 Supercar events in south-east Queensland, along with the Gold Coast 600 in October.
The Gold Coast event has a high profile, but an advantage for fans at Queensland Raceway is they can see the entire track from various vantage points which is not possible on the Surfers Paradise street circuit set among high-rise buildings.
Practice at Queensland Raceway will be held today, and there will be races over 140km tomorrow, and 200km on Sunday.
All 28 Holden Commodores and Ford Falcons will be fitted with a mix of soft-compound 'sprint' tyres and durable 'control' rubber in both races, as in the previous two rounds at Hidden Valley near Darwin and in Townsville.
Predicting results in round eight of the championship is difficult because the 3.1km track has been resurfaced since V8 Supercars previously raced there.
Some of the Queensland-based teams tested at the upgraded circuit a week ago and I'm told the resurfacing has smoothed out the bumpy sections, especially around the first, second, and third corners.
The new track conditions will make today's practice sessions crucial for all teams and drivers, because they will have to revise suspension and chassis settings to maximise car performance and grip levels.
Assessing this week's event, Team Vodafone has strong momentum after Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes collectively won all four races in their Commodores in the previous two rounds.
Whincup leads the championship by 100 points ahead of Ford Performance Racing's Mark Winterbottom, with his team-mate Will Davison third a further 40 points behind.
Lowndes, who is fourth in the championship points, dominated the round at Queensland Raceway in 2011, winning each race.
Garth Tander and I are hopeful our Holden Racing Team Commodores will be competitive this week. Our team has an ongoing development program, and there are some new things for us to try.
Queensland Raceway has been one of my most successful tracks since I joined the championship fulltime in 2006.
I had three podium finishes for third places in both 2006 and 2007, won a race in 2008, had a second the following year, and won both races in 2010.
The 1997 Formula One world champion, Jacques Villeneuve, will drive the Pepsi Max Commodore for a second successive round.
Villeneuve, also a former Indy 500 winner and IndyCar champion, replaced
injured New Zealander Greg Murphy in the Kelly Racing-prepared Holden in
Townsville, and will continue driving the car at both Queensland Raceway
and in the following round at Eastern Creek (August 25-26).
CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS (after round 7): Jamie Whincup (Holden) 1,794; Mark
Winterbottom (Ford) 1,694; Will Davison (Ford) 1,654; Craig Lowndes
(Holden) 1,496; Shane Van Gisbergen (Ford) 1,280; Garth Tander (Holden)
1,239; Lee Holdsworth (Ford) 1,190; Tim Slade (Ford) 1,170; Fabian
Coulthard (Holden) 1,030; David Reynolds (Ford) 951. Other: James
Courtney (Holden) 866