Dundrod Circuit is a motorsport street circuit used for the RAC Tourist Trophy for sports cars between 1950 and 1955 and for the motorcycle Ulster Grand Prix from 1953 onwards. It is situated near the village of Dundrod in Lisburn, Northern Ireland. The nearby Clady Circuit also in County Antrim was used for the Ulster Grand Prix between (1922–1952) before moving to the Dundrod Circuit.[2]

History

The Dundrod Circuit (Irish: Dún dTrod) in Co Antrim, first used in 1950 for the RAC Tourist Trophy automobile race and the Formula One (non-championship) Ulster Trophy (1950–1953), was 7.416 mi (11.935 km) in length and later amended for the 1965 racing season to 7.401 mi (11.911 km) with the addition of the Lindsay Hairpin. For the 1953 racing season the Clady Circuit was abandoned for motor-cycle racing and the Ulster Grand Prix as part of the FIM Motorcycle Grand Prix World Championship and was moved to the nearby Dundrod Circuit in Co Antrim. The circuit comprised public roads closed for racing including a section of the secondary B38 Hannahstown Road between Glenavy and Hannahstown, Co Antrim, the secondary B101 Leathemstown Road from Leathemstown Corner to Dundrod and the B154 Quarterland/Tornagrough Road from Cochranstown to the road junction of the B38 Upper Springsfield Road/Hannahstown Road at the Lindsay Hairpin. After 1955 cars stopped racing there due to no less than 3 fatalities during the 1955 TT race and safety concerns with the narrow, high-speed nature of the circuit, and since then it has only been used for motorcycle racing.

The photo below shows the original much tighter hairpin, with the modern hairpin, known now as the Lindsay Hairpin, being slightly further back up the road.

Speed and race records

Original Hairpin

The lap record for the Dundrod Circuit is 3 minutes and 17.928 seconds at an average speed of 134.614 mph (216.640 km/h) set by Dean Harrison riding a Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R during the 2017 Ulster Grand Prix.[1] The race record for the Dundrod Circuit is an average speed of 133.180 mph (214.332 km/h) set by Bruce Anstey during the 2017 Ulster Grand Prix.[1]

The lap record for the RAC Tourist Trophy on the Dundrod Circuit is 4 minutes and 42 seconds at an average speed of 94.67 mph (152.36 km/h) held by Mike Hawthorn driving a Jaguar D-Type set during the 1955 RAC Tourist Trophy.[3] The race record for the RAC Tourist Trophy on the Dundrod Circuit is 7 hours, 3 minutes and 12 seconds an average speed of 88.32 mph (142.14 km/h) for 84 laps (622.96 miles/1002.518 km) during the 1955 RAC Tourist Trophy race held by the works Daimler-Benz entry of Stirling Moss/John Fitch driving a Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR.

The 1971 Ulster Grand Prix held on the Dundrod Circuit was won by Australian Jack Findlay in what was the Ulster Grand Prix's last year as part of the FIM Grand Prix international motorcycle racing calendar. Findlay's victory on a Suzuki was also notable for marking the first 500cc class win for a motorcycle powered by a two stroke engine.[4][5]

Race lap records

The fastest official race lap records at the Dundrod Circuit are listed as:

Category Time Driver Vehicle Event
Full Circuit: 11.910 km (1950–present)[6]
Superbike 3:17.928 Dean Harrison Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R 2017 Ulster Grand Prix
500cc 4:08.600 Giacomo Agostini MV Agusta 500 Three 1970 Ulster Grand Prix
350cc 4:13.600 Giacomo Agostini MV Agusta 350 3C 1970 Ulster Grand Prix
250cc 4:21.400 Kel Carruthers Yamaha 250 V4 1970 Ulster Grand Prix
125cc 4:27.000 Bill Ivy[a]
Phil Read[a]
Yamaha 125 V4[a] 1967 Ulster Grand Prix[a]
1968 Ulster Grand Prix[a]
Sports car racing 4:42.000[7] Mike Hawthorn Jaguar D-type 1955 RAC Tourist Trophy
Formula One 4:44.000[8] Giuseppe Farina Alfa Romeo 159 1951 Ulster Trophy
50cc 5:17.200 Ángel Nieto Derbi 50 1970 Ulster Grand Prix

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b c d e Both riders took the same lap time independently on different years.

References

  1. ^ a b c "MCE Insurance Ulster Grand Prix - MMB Surfacing Superbike Race" (PDF). Ulster Grand Prix. MCUI (Ulster Centre) Timing. 12 August 2017. p. 32. Retrieved 2 June 2018.
  2. ^ Cook, Alastair (2004). Days of Thunder: The History of the Ulster Grand Prix. Gill & MacMillan. pp. 21–22. ISBN 0-7171-3800-3.
  3. ^ The Motor. Temple Press Limited. 1959. p. 5.
  4. ^ Jack Findlay obituary - The Telegraph
  5. ^ "MotoGP Milestones". crash.net. 22 May 2003. Retrieved 30 March 2017.
  6. ^ "Dundrod map, history and latest races - Motorsport Database - Motorsport Magazine". Retrieved 7 December 2022.
  7. ^ "1955 Tourist Trophy". Retrieved 7 December 2022.
  8. ^ "1951 Ulster Trophy". Retrieved 7 December 2022.

External links