Long-running speed trials under threat


The Brighton Speed Trials is considered to be the world’s longest running motorsport event, having first run in July 1905.

However it, along with other motoring events on Madeira Drive (such as the veteran car run), is currently under threat as there are lobbyists who wish to ban all motor vehicles permanently from Madeira Drive.
Fortunately there’s an associated petition which is against such a ban.

The Brighton and Hove Motor Club has been organising and running the Speed Trials since 1932, and its Facebook page initially drew attention to the lobbying for a motor vehicle ban, and also to a campaign that opposes it.

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The Speed Trials is a car and bike event, and it’s by invitation of the B&HMC that the VMCC Sprint Section has been running the bikes at Brighton since it was formed in the early 1980s.

The section’s founders have been running the bikes at the event from the very early 1970s – namely Len Cole and Phil Manzano followed by Paul, Pat and Jayne Standing.

Details of the petition to keep the speed trial viable are at www.brightonandhovemotorclub.co.uk and www.vmccsprint.co.uk and also on the local newspaper website at www.theargus.co.uk/news/18489634.madeira-drive-car-ban-continue-lockdown-success, while several Facebook pages are also following the situation.

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The sight of classic machinery racing along Madeira Drive should not be lost, according to campaigners.

Some details can also be found at: www.facebook.com/groups/brightonandhovemotorclub;
www.facebook.com/groups/brightonspeedtrials and www.facebook.com/vmccsprint
So, what about the 2020 Brighton Speed Trials?

Well, the date of Saturday, September 5 has been in the public domain since the 2019 event; however, given the present uncertainty with the Covid-19 pandemic and related restrictions (plus the above closure proposal), at present it’s not possible to know how things will stand in September.

Chris Illman leaves the line on the mighty ‘Thor’.

So it is probably best to keep an eye on the relevant club websites and Facebook pages.

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