20 Cars Max
Castle Combe is situated in Wiltshire, and is a short 20 mile journey from Bristol. It is a unique race track in that it is based on the perimeter tracks of a former World War II airfield.
It is a 1.85-mile track, surrounded by spectacular scenery and state-of-the-art facilities.
If you’re based in the South-West or simply fancy a track day at one of the friendliest circuits on our shores, you’ll want to carry on reading all about Castle Combe.
Address: Castle Combe Circuit, Castle Combe, Chippenham, Wiltshire, SN14 7EY
Circuit Type: Permanent road course
Best for quieter track days, Castle Combe offers seven fast corners including two chicanes on 1.85 miles of fierce circuit. Popular with single seater drivers as well as race cars, the track has attracted TV shows such as Top Gear & Fifth Gear for show features. If it’s fast enough for the Stig, its fast enough for us, right?
All vehicles must pass a static noise test to be allowed on the circuit, with the limit set at 100 decibels.
There are superb viewing areas around the 240-acre site. Castle Combe really is about the entire experience. Its planting scheme makes for a wonderful site, both on and off the track.
Due to the intimate experience on offer at Castle Combe, it really is one of the favourite tracks around, and one certainly not to be missed.
Castle Combe is, quite rightly, one of the most popular circuits in the south of England. Why? It’s clear to see. It is 90 miles from London, 60 miles from Birmingham and 60 miles from Cardiff. It is the central racing hub to a number of major cities.
Within an hour’s drive is Bristol Airport, while Heathrow can be reached in just over an hour along the M4 motorway.
The circuit itself is located half a mile from the village of Castle Combe, and a mere five miles from Choppenham on the B4039.
Junctions 17 & 18 of the M4 clearly signpost the turn off. Just look for the attraction with the chequered flag!
If you’re travelling to Castle Combe via train, Chippenham is usefully located on the main line from Paddington to Bristol Temple Meads.
Opened in 1941, the track began as an RAF airfield, much like many British circuits. It wasn’t until March 1945, two months before VE (Victory in Europe) Day, that the space became fully operational.
The first racing event at the circuit took place in July 1950 and was organised by Bristol Motorcycle and Light Car Club, along with the landowners, the Gorst family.
In fact, Castle Combe opened just 18 months after Silverstone, and it remains to this day one of the longest established circuits in the UK.
Up until as recently as 1999, the track followed its original layout around the old air base perimeter. Below are some key dates in the history of Castle Combe Circuit:
1950 – Stirling Moss wins 2.5 litre race as circuit opens
1955 – Harry Schell wins the last F1 race in Wiltshire
1965 – Chris Summers records first 100mph lap in Lotus 24 Chevrolet
1971 – Alan Jones & Jody Scheckter, future world champions, finish on F3 podium
1976 – Nigel Mansell wins Formula Ford race
1982 – Ayrton Senna wins Formula Ford 2000 race
1985 – Damon Hill finishes 6th in Formula Ford Race
1989 – David Coulthard wins Formula Ford race
2000 – Circuit celebrates 50 years
As previously mentioned, the circuit retained its classic layout well into the 1990s, and it remained an incredibly quick course. This was never clearer than when Nigel Greensall managed a lap record of 130.93mph in his Tyrrell 022.
Following a tragic incident, modifications were made to the track design and spectator areas. Chicanes were added before the Old Paddock Bend and Westway in a bid to reduce overall speeds
If you’re seeking a track day experience that is as intimate as it is picturesque, then Castle Combe is the circuit for you.
As with all circuits with Want2Race, track day spaces are extremely limited. Be sure to book early in order to avoid disappointment.