Full speed ahead for Syston trials

Speed on two wheels at Syston last year. EMN-170806-151234001
Speed on two wheels at Syston last year. EMN-170806-151234001

A local motorsport event revival is gathering pace on one of Britain’s oldest road racing circuits - near Sleaford!

On the doorstep is the first road racing circuit in Britain, steeped in history, and the Syston Park Speed Trials have been launched to relive that motoring heritage.

Four wheel action from last year's re-launched speed trials. EMN-170806-151224001

Four wheel action from last year's re-launched speed trials. EMN-170806-151224001

The event was re-established two years ago by a group of enthusiasts led by Richard Powell and Will Bicknell.

Mr Powell said they had been chatting and realised with Will’s expertise in event organisation and Richard’s enthusiasm for cars they could find a venue and have a hill climb. Will found out that a friend, Paul Clegg, had a former race track on his land - Syston Park - pre-dating Brooklands by a year.

Mr Powell said: “Some of the greatest pre-war racing drivers either raced here or were inspired by this track.”

In their research they found gems on the internet and personal accounts including evidence that local legend Raymond Mays used it for testing.

Motorcycle racing at Syston back in the 1920s. EMN-170806-151821001

Motorcycle racing at Syston back in the 1920s. EMN-170806-151821001

After negotiations they set up the first race meeting with most drivers coming from the local area and it is now going from strength to strength.

Mr Powell said: “What we would like to do is to grow the event slowly and create something which is very much of the spirit of what went on here, concentrating on the cars and bikes.”

Racing started at Syston Park, between Sleaford and Grantham, in 1906 with a hill climb. In 1926 Syston Park created the first road race circuit in Britain. With Brooklands and Donington Park it became one of the premier racing venues of its time attracting crowds of 30,000, however racing ceased in 1939.

Originally a motorcycle Grand Prix venue, Syston Park was used as a training ground for the TT and Manx Grand Prix. Later it attracted cars such as ‘Bloody Mary’ and ERA R1 competing in the Oxford and Cambridge Inter-Varsity competitions.

The second Syston Speed Trials revival will be on August 27, when the organisers will re-capture the spirit with only pre-1939 cars and motor cycles running up the original half-mile hill climb.

Gates will open from 8.30am with the action starting at 10am including several Syston originals who raced there in the period, together with other fabulous period machinery from grand prix cars, works motorcycles from the TT and eccentric aero engined Edwardian specials.

There will be a classic car park and a catering tent. Tickets must be pre-booked and will not be available on the day. Visit: www.systonparkspeedtrials.com