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No Bikes at Brighton Speed Trials

Brighton Speed Trials – one of the UK’s oldest motorsport events– will not be featuring motorcycles this year, after a key organiser pulled out over safety concerns. The Sprint Section of the Vintage Motorcycle Club (VMCC), which has been organising the motorcycle entry for 40 years, said it took the decision “with great regret.”

Brighton Speed Trials see cars, bikes and three-wheelers compete for the fastest standing start over a quarter-mile on Madeira Drive, right on Brighton seafront. Throughout its history, the Speed Trials – held every September – have faced challenges over noise and safety issues, but this move could spell the end of motorcycle involvement.

A statement from the Sprint Section read: “Since the last event in September 2019 we have spent considerable time and effort fighting to get the bikes back at Brighton, but the safety of our riders is uppermost…The road layout of Madeira Drive is currently not conducive for two- or three-wheeled motorsport without additional safety features being installed to mitigate the issues concerned.”

The Speed Trials will continue (on 2nd September this year) as a car-only event, organised by the Brighton & Hove Motor Club.

Jim Freeman, chair of the BMF, thought it was a shame that bikes would be missing out on this historic event in the motorsport calendar. “The BMF was part of the fight to keep bikes at Madeira Drive. We understand the VMCC’s safety concerns, but it’s a sad day for amateur motorcycle sport, another venue and event disappearing from the calendar. ”

Written by Peter Henshaw

Top image courtesy of MCN