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Driving fast in the UK - legal track days

By raccars Published

Audi R8

Track days are the best way to enjoy your car's potential without risking losing your licence.

As exciting as it is to take delivery of a new sports car, in the UK this is always tinged with regret that there's nowhere to really let loose and see what it can do - on public roads at least. However, if you attend track days and racing circuits you can put your pedal to the metal and your skills to the test in a legal and relatively safe environment.

Some track days are all about flat out speed, some test your mettle off road and others push your car's chassis to the limit, but all are affordable and accessible to novices and experienced drivers.

Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground, Leicester

Just outside Leicester, the Bruntingthorpe proving ground offers a range of driving experiences with its 'Big Thunder' team. This is a group of driving pros who will put you through your paces in one of the company's eclectic and interesting range of vehicles, such as Ferraris, VW Lupos, Westfields and Ariel Atoms. There are various different tracks and courses on site so you can choose from go-karting, off road experiences and special handling skills and skidding circuits. There are also three circuits dedicated to driving at speed.

Heyford Park, Oxfordshire

This family-friendly venue offers various tailor made driving experiences and the chance to drive a range of classics including Austin Healey 3000s and Jaguar E-Types, or some of the world's most exciting sports cars. The fleet includes an Audi R8, Lamborghini Gallardo, Aston Martin DB9 and a Ferrari 360. The Ultimate Supercar Double Driving Experience is a speed-focused event costing £499 or you choose a bespoke package.

Brands Hatch track days and driving experiences

The legendary British circuit allows you to bring your own car to its track day events and burn as much rubber as you like, or you can choose from one of the venue's experience packages. These cost from £99 to £545 and include the opportunity to charge around the circuit in a BMW M4 GT, a F4 racer, or a day long package where you drive seven of the world's fastest and most powerful cars.

Bedford Autodrome

There are four tracks at Bedford which, like Brands Hatch, is run by Motor Sports Vision (MSV). There are five miles of track divided over four separate circuits plus a dedicated off-roading circuit, and a range of vehicles which include single seater F4s with 185bhp, BMWs and Ferraris. The circuits are designed to offer a fun combination of speed and driving skill challenges to keep you on your toes.

Castle Combe, Wiltshire

This sleepy village is a surprising home for one of the UK's classic motoring tracks, which took over the site of RAF Castle Combe in 1950. Sir Stirling Moss and Ayrton Senna are just two of the racing legends who have taken to its 1.8 mile track, which is renowned for its difficulty and will push your concentration to the maximum. Track days are available to beginners and old hands, priced from £110. Castle Combe's fleet contains a number of supercars and some of the most entertaining racers, such as the Lotus Elise, Formula Ford 1600 and the Ford Focus ST2. A number of highly experienced professional drivers make up the instruction team and can teach you some essential skills.

If none of these are in a suitable location for you, check out the Anglesey Circuit in Ty Croes, Wales, Goodwood, Cheshire's Oulton Park, 4x4 specialist Kankku in the Lake District, Snetterton Circuit in Norfolk, Rockingham in the East Midlands, Lincolnshire's Cadwell Park or Blyton Park, Woodbridge Airfield Circuit just outside Ipswich, Thruxton in Hampshire, Donington Park and Croft Circuit in Dalton on Tees, North Yorkshire.

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