Kimi Raikkonen's surprise victory at the 2013 Melbourne Grand Prix wasn't the only treat in store for F1 fans last weekend. Organisers also hosted the Ultimate Speed Comparison to demonstrate the awesome power and cornering ability of modern F1 cars, by pitting one against a V8 racing car and a high-powered Mercedes road car.
Developing 556bhp, the Mercedes SL63 AMG Roadster is as powerful a car as you could hope for on the road and has nearly enough grunt to match the 600bhp Holden V8 Supercar - that's Australia's name for saloon car racers - that it's lined up next to on the start line. But both are dwarfed by the massive 830bhp produced by the naturally aspirated 2.3-litre V8 of Red Bull's F1 car.
Oddly, behind the wheel of both are motorcycle racing legends Mick Doohan, piloting the SL63, and Casey Stoner in the V8. Red Bull wisely put an experienced F1 pilot behind the wheel of its latest championship contender, in the form of David Coulthard.
Launched in a staggered start, calculated so that all three cars would cross the line at the same time, the V8 Supercar was released 16.8 seconds after the SL63, with the RB9 following from a standing start some 23.9 seconds after that.
Rather embarrassingly for Casey Stoner, he just failed to pass the SL63 before crossing the line.
This is not the first time such a speed comparison has been conducted. Jeremy Clarkson originally had the idea and pitted a V6 Ford Cougar against Colin McRae and his 300bhp WRC Ford Focus as well as an 800bhp Stewart Ford F1 Car driven by Johnny Herbert.
Playing out in a similar fashion to the Melbourne demonstration, Clarkson's attempt did at least finish with the cars crossing the line in the intended order, and with a particularly impressive display of downforce enhanced cornering speed as the F1 car flies past the others on the final bend.
Watch the video below and witness Clarkson's early comparison...