Organisers of next month's season opening Australian grand prix have changed the event's motto because of the devastating bushfires near Melbourne

Organisers of next month's season opening Australian grand prix have changed the event's motto because of the devastating bushfires near Melbourne.

The catchphrase 'Melbourne fires up' had been used in earlier marketing material for the Albert Park race on March 29.

But in light of this month's bushfires in the local state of Victoria, which have so far claimed 181 lives, 500 injuries and 1834 houses, the motto has been "toned down", according to The Australian newspaper.

The newspaper said marketing material is still declaring that British band The Who "are coming to fire up Melbourne" at the grand prix, but it appears these references have also been altered during the course of Monday.

And the event's official website is now urging fans to "make sure you're there in 2009 as Melbourne Gears Up!"

 

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