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About

The Isle of Wight Speed Trials is bringing motorsport back to the Isle of Wight. The Sandown Sprint was the first event planned for March 2020, but this was unfortunately postponed due to the coronavirus lockdown. New dates have now been announced for the Island Car Centre Sandown Sprint, which will now take place over the weekend of 27th & 28th March 2021. Bringing sun, sea and speed together for an exhilarating weekend of action.

Be prepared for a weekend of exhilarating fun, perfect for the whole family set against the spectacular backdrop of Bembridge Down. Enjoy unparalleled views of all the action from our spectator viewing areas along the beach esplanade and in our exclusive VIP hospitality area.

Please note that the event in 2021 will be open to 2020 ticket holders. At this stage there are no plans to sell further tickets for 2021.

Postponement in 2020

Motorsport UK revoked all organising permits in March 2020 as part of the coronavirus lockdown measures. As a consequence the Island Car Centre Sandown Sprint, planned for 28th & 29th March, was postponed.

David Richards, chairman of Motorsport UK, explained, “Clearly we live in challenging times and exceptional measures are required. The decision to suspend Motorsport UK permits on a temporary basis is not one that was taken lightly as the industry employs many thousands of people.”

Promoter Tim Addison of Solent commented: “Together with the Isle of Wight Car Club, we looked at all options to run the event later this year (2020). But for a number of reasons it was not viable. 2021 seems a long way off, but all tickets purchased for this year will be valid. Our priority is to deliver a full spectator experience to those people who supported this year and in fact, we have no plans to sell additional tickets. “

Although it has not been possible to formalise plans with the local highways authority during the lockdown period, informal responses from both the Isle of Wight Council and Island Roads has been positive. An application for a race permit will also be submitted to Motorsport UK in due course.

“We will be looking to hold early meetings with all key organisations as soon as we are able to,” commented Malcolm Smith, Chairman of the Isle of Wight Car Club. “Clearly there are more pressing issues to be dealt with right now. Our members and the Sprint competitors have been very supportive of the postponement and we’re already looking towards the 2021 date. It’s just 10 months away.”

History of motorsport on the Isle of Wight

There were once regular speed trials and rallies held on the Isle of Wight up until the late 1950s, including some based in Sandown, but ever since the national speed limits were imposed on UK public roads, motor racing had effectively been outlawed on anything but private land; such as hill climbs, motor racing circuits and other speed venues. There are of course some famous exceptions such as Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man which both have slightly different legal systems.

Since 2017 it has been possible to apply for a Motor Racing Order from the local authority as long as it has been sanctioned by Motorsport UK, the governing body for motor racing in this country. In November 2018 Tim Addison from Solent approached the Isle of Wight Car Club with a proposal to host a closed public road sprint on the Isle of Wight. The club would be the race organiser and Solent the event promoter. Culver Parade in Sandown was the venue put forward by Solent as it has the advantage of a large seawall to provide a spectator vantage point.

Working together, Solent and the Isle of Wight Car Club has since consulted with stakeholders in the area as well as with a number of key organisations including the Isle of Wight Council, Sandown Town Council and Island Roads. With an enormous amount of positivity and encouragement the process of organising the Island Car Centre Sandown Sprint was started.

  • Farnborough and District Motor Club will be working closely with the Isle of Wight Car Club to assist with hosting the motorsport aspects of the event, thanks to their experiences and knowledge. Now after almost two years of discussions and negotiations with Motorsport UK the organisers successfully applied for an event permit in the summer of 2019. 

    Organisers have now applied to the local authorities for a Motor Racing Order and this is currently being processed as of September 2019. The Island Car Centre Sandown Sprint is planned for the weekend of the 28th & 29th March 2020.

    Solent is a local events and marketing company, working in partnership with the Isle of Wight Car Club to produce and run the Isle of Wight Speed Trials in the near future. The IOWCC is registered by the MSA. This would be one of the first speed events run on closed public roads in England under the new regulations.

About Sandown

Sandown is a truly traditional beach resort which is a delightful bay on the south east coast of the Isle of Wight, the ideal location for any family holiday. With its gently sloping sandy beaches, miles of coastline, blue sea and great choice of attractions and places to eat, Sandown is without doubt one of the best beach resorts on the Isle of Wight.

Blessed with miles of golden coastline and a great number of accommodation establishments taking full advantage of the beautiful sea views. Whether you’re looking for a full board hotel with excellent pool and spa facilities, a quaint little bed and breakfast or self catering cottages just steps from the beach.

Sponsors & Partners

Thanks to our sponsors and partners for their continued support

Island Echo

Digital Media Partner
Thanks to our digital media partner, Island Echo for their continued support in promoting the event.

Island Echo

Event Sponsor
Thanks to our digital media partner, Island Echo for their continued support in promoting the event.