The Thruxton Circuit is a 2.356 mi (3.792 km) motor-racing circuit located near the village of Thruxton in Hampshire, England, United Kingdom, about 30 miles north of Southampton.

It has hosted motorsport events including the British Touring Car Championship, British GT Championship, British Formula One Championship, British Formula Three, and GB3 Championship. It is often referred to as the "Fastest Circuit in the UK" where drivers can reach speeds of over 190 mph (300 km/h) and has earned the reputation of being a true driver's track. To illustrate this, Damon Hill drove his Williams Formula One car around the circuit at an average speed of 147 mph (237 km/h) in 1993.

The site also houses the headquarters of the British Automobile Racing Club (BARC).[1]

History

The site was originally constructed in 1942 as RAF Thruxton, a World War II airfield which was home to both the RAF and USAAF and was used for troop-carrying aircraft and gliders, including operations during the D-Day landings. Also, the paratroopers who took part in the successful Bruneval Raid (Operation Biting), in which German radar equipment was seized on the coast of France, took off from here.

The circuit, which follows the line of the airfield's perimeter road, was established in 1968. From 1950 to 1965, motorbike races had taken place on the runways and perimeter road.[2]

Motorsport activities

Racing at Thruxton

Owing to planning restrictions, the circuit can only run 12 days of motorsport each year. Currently, three are devoted to motorbike racing, with a weekend dedicated to the British Superbike Championship, Britain's premier motorcycle racing category; with the third day being used for club racing.

Reema Juffali in her F4 car at Thruxton in April 2019

The remaining days are devoted to car racing with weekends being used for the TOCA British Touring Car Championship, the British Formula 3 and British GT Championship package and the Dunlop Great and British Festival, which features rounds of the British Truck Racing Championship, the International Truck Racing Challenge as well as the staples of the festival, including the Radical endurance races. Two separate one day meetings are run for amateur championships of the BARC, one of which is titled the Thruxton Classic, which features races for Classic Touring Cars, Classic Formula Ford 1600 and Formula Ford 2000. The remaining day is allocated to other organising clubs, such as the 750 Motor Club and Historic Sports Car Club. Owing to the relative infrequency of race meetings, Thruxton continues to be a popular part of the motorsport calendar.[3]

Lap records

The all-time outright unofficial track record is 57.6 seconds, set by Damon Hill in a Williams FW15C, during a demonstration run in 1993.[4] The official race lap records at the Thruxton Circuit are listed as:

Category Time Driver Vehicle Event
Main Circuit: 3.793 km (1968–present)
Formula 3000 1:01.960[5] Earl Goddard Reynard 95D 2000 Thruxton EuroBOSS round
Formula Three 1:06.752[6] Jean-Éric Vergne Dallara F308 2010 Thruxton British F3 round
Formula Two 1:07.370[7] Johnny Cecotto March 822 1982 Thruxton F2 round
Group C 1:07.460[8] James Weaver Porsche 956 GTi 1986 Thruxton Interserie round
Formula One 1:09.430[9] Emilio de Villota Lotus 78 1979 2nd Thruxton British F1 round
GT1 1:10.785[10] David Warnock Lister Storm GT 2002 Thruxton British GT round
Formula 4 1:10.848[11] Alex Dunne Tatuus F4-T-421 2022 1st Thruxton British F4 round
Formula 5000 1:11.000[12][13] Vern Schuppan[a]
Ian Ashley[a]
Lola T332[a]
Lola T330[a]
1974 2nd Thruxton F5000 round[a]
1975 1st Thruxton F5000 round[a]
Super Touring 1:13.272[14] Jason Plato Vauxhall Vectra 2000 Thruxton BTCC round
N-GT 1:13.303[15] Nathan Kinch Ferrari 360 Modena GTC 2004 Thruxton British GT round
GT2 1:13.437[16] Tim Mullen Ferrari 360 Modena GTC 2005 Thruxton British GT round
Group 6 1:14.000[17] John Burton Chevron B19 1971 2nd Thruxton RAC BSC round
BSB 1:14.655[18] Josh Brookes Ducati Panigale V4 R 2019 Thruxton BSB round
Formula BMW 1:14.709[19] Stian Sørlie Mygale FB02 2004 Thruxton Formula BMW UK round
Group 7 1:16.200[20] Jo Siffert Porsche 917 1971 1st Thruxton RAC BSC round
NGTC 1:16.206[21] Tom Ingram Toyota Corolla (E210) 2020 Thruxton BTCC round
BTC Touring 1:17.303[22] Yvan Muller BTC-T Vauxhall Astra Coupe 2002 Thruxton BTCC round
Group 4 1:17.400[23] Brian Redman Lola T70 Mk.3B GT 1969 Embassy Trophy
Sports 2000 1:17.880[24] Ray Bellm Chevron B36 1984 Thruxton Thundersports round
Group A 1:20.640[25] Dave Brodie Ford Sierra RS500 Cosworth 1989 1st Thruxton BTCC round
Group 5 Sports Car 1:21.000[26] Peter Brown Ferrari 512 M 1972 Thruxton MN GT round
Main Circuit: 4.437 km (1952–1964)
Formula Two 2:00.000[27] Tony Rolt Connaught Type A 1953 Bristol MC & LCC Race
Sports car racing 2:05.200[28] Jimmy Stewart Jaguar C-type 1953 Thruxton National Sports Car race

Medical and safety services

Thruxton has a medical centre in line with Motor Sports Association standards.

The MSA circuit licence requires a minimum of two doctors and two rescue units for a race meeting. Most meetings are operated with three rescue units plus a medical car, along with ambulances and first aiders.

Points of interest

During race weekends, a radio commentary service called Radio Thruxton operates in the FM band on 87.7 MHz. This has commentators at key points of the track as well as a pit reporter, who conducts interviews with the race winners.

Outside of motor racing, the circuit offers a driving school for aspiring racing drivers. It has featured as the venue for BBC3's 2005 series Stars in Fast Cars.

The "Thruxton" heritage

As a result of its racing associations, the name "Thruxton" has been used for:

Thruxton Hospitality Centre

The Thruxton Hospitality Centre was opened in June 2018 by Nigel Mansell and Murray Walker. The £2million flagship building is the latest addition to the circuit, forming part of the track's modernisation project. The new building is a 1415m² facility with more than ten conference and function rooms as well as hospitality suites, a restaurant and bar, an exhibition space and catering facilities. A first floor terrace and balcony provides a view of the first-corner and across the venue.

Driving experiences

Aside from hosting major motor racing events, Thruxton Motorsport Centre offers driving experiences. Next to the main circuit is the 1,200 yd (1,100 m) long Thruxton Karting Circuit.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b c d e f Both drivers took the same lap time independently in different races.

References

  1. ^ "Contacts". BARC. Retrieved 18 November 2016.
  2. ^ "Circuit Facilities - History of Thruxton". Thruxton Motorsport Centre. Retrieved 18 November 2016.
  3. ^ "Thruxton Village". www.thruxtonvillage.com/. Thruxton Village Protection Society. Retrieved 25 March 2022.
  4. ^ "Thruxton". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  5. ^ "Thruxton - Motorsport Magazine". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  6. ^ "2010 Thruxton British F3 - Round 20". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  7. ^ "1982 Jochen Rindt Trophy". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  8. ^ "Interserie Thruxton 1986". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  9. ^ "1979 Thruxton F1". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  10. ^ "British GT Championship Round 10 Thruxton 14th & 15th September 2002 Best Sector Times - Race 7" (PDF). Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  11. ^ "2022 ROKiT F4 British Championship Certified by FIA Round 9 - Classification" (PDF). Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  12. ^ "1974 Thruxton F5000 - Round 13". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  13. ^ "1975 Thruxton F5000 - Round 7". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  14. ^ "BTCC 2000 » Thruxton Round 6 Results". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  15. ^ "British GT Championship Rounds 13 and 14 Thruxton Circuit 29th & 30th August 2004 Best Sector Times - Round 12". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  16. ^ "British GT Championship Rounds 9&10 Thruxton Circuit 28th & 29th May 2005 Best Sector Times - Race 8". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  17. ^ "RAC Sports Car Championship; Thruxton 1971". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  18. ^ "Bennetts British Superbikes - JG Speedfit Round 7 - 2nd-4th August - Thruxton - 2019 Race 12 - Classification". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  19. ^ "BTCC - Round 1 - Thruxton - 2004 - Formula BMW UK Championship Provisional Result - Round 1". Retrieved 27 July 2022.
  20. ^ "RAC Sports Car Championship Thruxton 1971". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  21. ^ "BTCC 2020 » Thruxton Round 13 Results". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  22. ^ "BTCC 2002 » Thruxton Round 6 Results". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  23. ^ "Embassy Trophy Thruxton 1969". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  24. ^ "Thundersports Thruxton 1984". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  25. ^ "BTCC 1989 » Thruxton Round 3 Results". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  26. ^ "MN GT Thruxton 1972". Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  27. ^ "1953 Thruxton F2". Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  28. ^ "National Thruxton [S+1.5] 1953". Retrieved 26 November 2022.

External links