The Ulster Grand Prix – the fastest road race in the world – is now underway. Today will see a qualifying session and then a series of five scheduled races concluding with the Charles Hurst Dundrod 150.
Racing will resume on Saturday 12th August 2017 taking us to the feature race – 2017 MCE Ulster Grand Prix.
The hardest question is 'where should I go to watch it?'
Thankfully the organisers have put together a very helpful list of the a the Vantage Points and how to get to them :
Excellent spectating from the Joey Dunlop Grandstand (pre-booked tickets only) opposite the paddock. Great views of the final corner (Dawson’s Bend) and all the start line activities. There are also plenty of facilities and parking in this area of the circuit.
Access – From all areas (M1, M2, Nutt’s Corner, Lisburn & Dunmurry) before roads close or from Rock Road (B101) Flowbog Road/Rusheyhill Road when roads are closed.
THE FLYING KILO :
This long speed straight has viewing points on both sides of the road but be mindful of prohibited areas and obey the Marshals. Be prepared to be blown away by the 190mph speeds of the super bikes and don’t be expecting to get marking more than the first two or three in your programme.
Access – Similar access as the Start/Finish area.
ROCK BENDS :
The first left sweep can be observed from the inside of the Rock Crossroads whilst the following right and left are viewed from the inside of both corners only.
Access – The best access when roads are closed is from the Lisburn side (Pond Park Road – B101), following signs for Antrim on the Rock Road (B101).
A great place to watch from both inside and outside the circuit; this is the first of the hard braking right handers. Get there early to get a good spot and watch the riders stream up towards Deer’s Leap single file and flat out.
Grandstand facilities and big screen for spectators to enjoy the action. New 600 plastic seated modern grandstand.
Access – Similar access to Rock Bends on Rock Road (B101)
DEER’S LEAP :
You can watch the riders accelerate all the way from Leathemstown and then disappear over the blind right corner, or watch them from the top as they go over the brow and wheelie down the hill towards Cochranstown. Spectating is only on the outside in the first part; then on the inside of the second part.
Access – Best access from Belfast via Nutt’s Corner roundabout and Dundrod Village. A52 from Belfast; then the B101 will take you to Dundrod Village. From the M1 – exit Junction 9; A26 to Nutt’s Corner roundabout; then B101 to Dundrod Village.
Much faster than it looks and spectating is limited on the outside as the riders approach this right sweep. Plenty of room on the inside whilst there are limited spots on the exit towards Quarter lands under the trees.
Access – From Nutt’s Corner roundabout and Dundrod Village. From the M1 – exit Junction 9; A26 to Nutt’s Corner roundabout; then B101 to Dundrod Village.
Another deceptively fast right-hander, spectating is only possible on the outside and is quite restricted. It’s much better at Irelands just a few hundred metres away.
New 120 plastic seated modern grandstand for this years Bike Week.
Access – From Nutt’s Corner roundabout follow the B101 to Dundrod Village then the B154 to Quarterlands Road.
IRELAND’S CORNER :
There are good spots along the inside of the circuit as this riders take this fast left sweep and head towards the climb to Budore.
Access – Same as Quarterlands.
The riders climb uphill to the fastest corner on the circuit and spectating is limited along the outside of the circuit up to the very fast right-hander. The exit has good viewing potential from both sides of the road and whilst there are no facilities, it is highly recommended for the experience alone.
Access – From the Nutt’s Corner roundabout follow the B101 to Dundrod Village; then the B154 along Quarterlands Road to Budore crossroads, following the direction of circuit.
JOEY’S WINDMILL :
This superb right hand bend is very difficult to spectate from, as both the land and house are privately owned. Better to watch on the entrance or on the exit towards Jordan’s cross.
Access – Same as above only follow B154 onto Tornagrough Road to Joey’s Windmill following direction of circuit.
Riders will be breaking from approximately 180mph. This is an excellent right hand bend with viewing from bank on left.
Access – From Belfast: (same as Lindsay’s Hairpin directions) only go against the circuit from the Lindsay Hairpin for half a mile. From the MI: same directions from Nutt’s Corner only continue on the circuit from Wheeler’s (B154). Tornagrough is the next section of the circuit.
Good views here on the run from Wheeler’s and into this long double left-hander. Viewing is from the outside only on the approach and from the inside of this scratcher’s corner.
Access – From Belfast: (same as Lindsay’s directions) only go against the circuit from the Lindsay Hairpin for half a mile. From the MI: same directions from Nutt’s Corner only continue on the circuit from Wheeler’s (B154). Tornagrough is the next section of the circuit.
LINDSAY HAIRPIN :
Excellent viewing at this legendary corner. Watch as the riders exit the fast left of Tornagrough and then hit the brakes hard. Many a race has been won and lost here.
New 120 plastic seated grandstand installed.
Access: From Belfast same as above. From the M1, same directions from Nutt’s Corner roundabout only continue on from Tornagrough (B154) for half a mile.
FLOWBOG CROSSROADS :
This fast left-hander, followed by a downhill approach to the Quarries, has plenty of room to spectate and offers facilities as well.
Parking and camping available.
Access – From Belfast via the Lindsay Hairpin (on the circuit) or Colinglen Road (A501) then right onto Flowbog Road/Ballycolin Road. From Lisburn take the Pond Park Road (B101), right onto the Mullaghglass Road (B101) then left into Flowbog Road/Ballycolin Road.
THE QUARRIES :
This is a superb place to watch, as the viewing is excellent from the high banks around the fast right and left. A great place to experience the famous UGP atmosphere.
New 450 plastic seated grandstand this year. New big screen TV coverage opposite.
Access – Same as above.
DAWSON’S BEND :
This last long right-hander, leading on to the Start/Finish straight is superb. The riders are nearly flat out on their sides as they accelerate around the corner and towards the line. Spectating is excellent from the banks on the outside or from down by the roadside. There’s also room on the inside from the field adjacent to the paddock.
Camping facilities available.
Access – Same as Start/Finish, then walk round to Dawson’s.