Drag racing has been a part of Long Marston Airfield’s activities since the early seventies with the first organised event taking place in September 1973. However, the sporting history books tell us that quarter mile sprints as well as half mile sprints were very much in evidence from 1956 with a series of yearly High Speed Trials organised by the Evesham Automobile Club held on the main runway long before proper drag racing had even been thought of in England!
Born from an American past time, drag racing is a competition in which vehicles compete to be the first to cross a set finish line 440 yards away from a standing start, and in a straight line. These races are contested between either two cars or two motorcycles and are started by the use of a lighting system otherwise known as the Christmas Tree. First gaining popularity in the USA after World War II, the sport steadily grew in popularity and spread across the globe, and eventually into England and to Long Marston Airfield as a permanent home to Shakespeare County Raceway (formerly Avon Park Raceway)
Establishing itself very early on as one of the leading drag strips in Europe, Shakespeare County Raceway hosts many and varied events throughout the summer seasons featuring prestigious national championship rounds, hot rod meets for nostalgia cars as well as themed events and Public Track Days offering members of the public a chance to see how fast their everyday car or motorcycle can accelerate in the safe confines of the raceway. These events are commonly know as 'Run What Ya Brung' Public Track Days.
Last year (2013) was a pretty important mile stone in the airfield's drag racing heritage celebrating over 40 years of organised drag racing. From those humble beginings of a make shift drag strip to a fully fledged quarter mile racing venue, drag racing in the UK has come along way since the national touring days, and we hope that the next 40 years will be just as successful at Long Marston Airfield.
For forthcoming events and dates please visit the track web site at Shakespeare County Raceway. See you at the strip!