Not a day for the faint-hearted but simply great for a petrol-head!
With temperatures over 30, on the wild open expanses of the former RAF base at Lyneham, last week saw the many army motorsport disciplines gather on the tarmac for the annual Festival of Motorsport. Designed primarily to enlighten the uninitiated into what is available in the army in the name of sport and motor racing, it was an impressive display of 4 and 2-wheeled machines. It provided a fantastic opportunity for soldiers and sponsors to see what track and off-road teams get up to, meet the dedicated enthusiasts and even have a spin around a race track.
Qioptic generously sponsored the day, Mercedes Benz proudly displayed their impressive Unimog truck and many other Team Army sponsors were there who help support the British Army Motorsport Association (BAMA) to enable such niche sporting opportunities to function and compete. Most drivers and support crews invest considerable time and personal money to indulge in motorsport but sponsorship and army funding remains vital to get cars and bikes onto respective grids. well done the sponsors!
Maj Gen Mark Gaunt, chairman of BAMA, presided of a dinner in the evening, not only to thank all those who support with their enthusiasm and cash but also to present BAMA awards. With guest speakers previously such as Murray Walker , this year it was the turn of the bikers to be particularly entertained by Steve Parrish, a motorcycle racing legend and now TV commentator recalling the anecdotes of a career in the 2-wheeled fast lane. With the dining room and mess entrance sporting a number of shiny racing machines, the telling tales of motoring exploits, a thoroughly good dinner and a scorching day on the tarmac, it was a memorable day for all.
The British Army Motorsports Association (BAMA) was formed in 1960 for the purpose of co-ordinating motorised wheeled driver training in the Army and in the form of competitive motorsport events and to represent the interests of Army Motor Sports at Service, National and International level. In 2010 BAMA was awarded the status of ‘Recognised Sport’ and organised itself into 3 Groups covering 8 motorsport disciplines; Navigation, Sports Car racing, Karting and Rallying are four-wheeled activities and Trials Enduro, Road Race and Adventure activities are for motorcycles.
Mission: ‘Giving serving members of the Army the opportunity to participate in Motorsport’
Vision: ‘To excel in the promotion and participation of Army Motorsports, allowing individuals and teams to reach their full potential in order that we become be the best Motorsport Organisation in the Armed Forces’
BAMA held its annual Festival of Army Motorsport (FoAM) at MOD Lyneham on Wednesday 21 June 2017. The aim of the festival is is to give members of the Army a chance to see what motorsport opportunities are available and how to get involved.
Published: 3 July 2017