Castle Combe Circuit’s lap records are predicted to tumble this year, following the resurfacing of the majority of the track.
The much awaited new surface was recently laid following the installation of a solar farm in the centre of the circuit. The new tarmacadam starts just after the start line and extends all the way through to the exit of Tower corner.
Initial impressions are the new surface is far more ‘grippy’ than the old. Additionally, one of Castle Combe’s most infamous ‘features’ the double bumps at Avon Rise, appear to have been tamed! Around 1700 tons of material was used in the resurfacing at a cost of £300,000.
Consequently, those close to the circuit feel lap records will be challenged. Alan Cooper, who not only lives adjacent to the track but also runs the circuit’s ‘Racing School’ and a team in the Castle Combe Formula Ford 1600 championship said, “ The smoother approach to one of the most demanding corners of any circuit anywhere will make life a lot easier for many cars.
“Combine that with the high levels of grip and I think we will see some stunningly fast times this year. I can’t see any of the circuit’s famous challenge being diminished, in fact it could be argued that with higher speeds, the challenge has increased. But we won’t really know for sure until the first proper test on 2 April.”
The circuit’s first race of the season is ‘Howard’s Day’ on Easter Monday, 4 April, featuring a capacity grid for the ‘On-Pole’ saloon car championship, Drive South West and EmpireRV backing the popular Formula Ford 1600 championship and Avatar Sports Cars fielding one of its own cars and also supporting the Sports & GT championship. Paddock based Merlin Motorsport adds its name to the circuit’s ‘Sports Racing’ series.