Untitled Document

Track Guide

A Brief History of Ballymena Raceway


Stock car racing was first staged in Ballymena as long ago as 1969 when the original pioneers of racing in the province battled it out on a cinder track. Unfortunately meetings were staged on a sporadic basis and a regular following could not be built up for the sport in the area, forcing the track to be shut down.

It would not be until 1977 that the sound and spectacle of stock car racing returned to the County Antrim town. The men behind the revival were Ernie Kilpatrick, a local hot rod driver and Robert Mathers, a council official. A super smooth tarmac surface was laid surrounded by an imposing concrete safety wall and the new Raceway was soon being hailed as one of the best in the UK. The long straights and wide, sweeping bends made the track ideally suited for hot rod racing, which was rapidly becoming the major attraction on the provinces oval racing scene at the time.

Thirty years later and Raceway is still going strong. The original promoters handed over management of the track to Tommy Shaw and Gordon Bland during the mid-eighties and when Gordon stepped down in 1990 the current promoting team of Tommy Shaw and local man Aubrey Arbuthnot assumed control.









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