Address: Symmonds Drive, Eurolink Ind Estate, Sittingbourne, Kent, ME10 3RY
Phone Number: 01795 410707
Web Site: www.bayfordkarting.co.uk
Track Length: 1100m
Facilities: Clubhouse, cafeteria, signing-on hut and toilets.
Weather Forecast: Click here for next 10 days
Bayford Meadows has been a regular feature on the C-100 calendar since 1998 when C-100 first visited the venue. The circuit was constructed in 1996 and features a fast outer section of corners and a very tight infield section that consists of three consecutive hairpins. It is therefore a circuit that suits the lighter drivers who have the advantage out of the slower corners. The faster corners around the outside of the circuit, are however, some of the most exciting corners on any of the circuits visited during the season and are great fun to drive.
The circuit lends itself nicely to the Sprint format and the rolling up laps are made easy by using the cut through at the back of the circuit that turns the circuit into one large oval. The location of the finish line prior to the pit lane entrance, means it is possible to finish a race and then come straight in the pits afterwards provided the drivers have sufficiently slowed down their karts before entering the uphill pit lane.
The pit lane is very tight and drivers should remember to carry enough speed up the pit lane entrance section before turning sharp right onto the dummy grid. Drivers that stall and cause a backlog of karts down the pit lane entrance tend not to be very popular with those that have to then push their karts up hill onto the dummy grid! Drivers contesting the Endurance championships will also use the same rolling up lap and should remember to raise their hands when pulling into the pit lane when making scheduled pit stops.
The opening laps of the races tend to result in a lot of contact due to the fact that drivers have to contend with 3 tight hairpins. It is very easy to get off line at any of these corners and lose numerous places so it is important to defend your line in the early laps of any C-100 event. There have been some great races at the circuit in previous years and it is one of those circuits where it is really difficult to break away from the pursuing pack once in the lead of the race. This ensures good close racing with lots of outbraking taking place into the 3 tight hairpins.
In summary, a track that favours the lightweight drivers but one that always provides some great action. It is great for spectators as you can see the whole circuit from any location which means the drivers are never safe from the watchful eye of the clerk of the course.
A Lap Around Bayford Meadows (by Lee Pilcher)
Lee Pilcher is the 2000 Lightweight Sprint champion who won the Sprint event at Bayford Meadow in both 1999 and 2000. It is his local circuit and he knows his way round the circuit like the back of his hand. Thanks to Lee for the effort taken in producing this summary.
"It's time for Bayford, a track that's liked by some and loathed by others. Personally, I rather like it but that may be because it's my local track! Anyway, here's my guide to the circuit.
As you approach turn one it's very important to get over to the left-hand side of the track. A quick dab on the brakes should slow you down enough and then turn in late, aiming to apex about mid way around the kerb. The kart should drift around the corner, and some correction may be needed. This is probably the fastest part of the track where there's not a lot of run off area, so you don't want to get this one wrong!
Hopefully you will have carried plenty of speed through the first corner and now it's full speed ahead down to turn two. This corner is really made up of 3 separate turns, the first part being the slight right hander which is then followed by the tight right hander and then a slight left on the exit.
The first part should involve turning in early and then aiming for the outside edge of the track so that you are back on line for the tight right hander. The aim for this corner should be to apex late so that you can straight line the left hander and get a good run out of this corner, but watch out for people making lunges down the inside here.
At turn 3 you should be looking to apex about half way around the corner keeping in mind that you are going to need to get back across on the exit to set yourself up for turn 4. Your speed for this corner will need to be sacrificed, and you should exit the corner on the inside/middle of the track, to allow you to get a good run into turn 5 and onto the straight, using all the kerb on the exit.
Turn 6 is an awkward corner that involves sticking to the outside as you enter it and rubbing the brake whist turning. As the corner tightens slow yourself down enough to stay tight to the apex to get a good run into turn 7. Turn 6 tends to invite people to dive down the inside, but this is almost impossible to defend against, it's often better to fall in behind them and re-overtake them as they slide wide at the apex.
Turn 7 and 8 is just a mater of making the corner as smooth as possible and trying to keep your foot buried.
Try to drift the kart around turn 9 avoiding taking too much kerb as this will upset the karts balance, the kart should then naturally drift to the outside on the exit, and there's a short straight before you have to brake hard for turn 10.
It's important to get a good run out of this corner in order to get good speed along the straight, but beware of the tyre wall on the exit, which will punish you if you run wide. There isn't really any chance of overtaking here, and it's far safer to wait for the straight.
Using the Kerbs at Bayford generally doesn't help apart from on the exit of some of the corners. Ones to avoid are the inside kerb at turns 1, 5 and 10 as these all tend to spit the kart back out!
One of the most important things at this track is to try and be smooth and not throw the kart around too much, particularly in the infield section.
And of course if it rains then all this goes straight out the window and its just a matter of trying to face the right way!!!!!"
Leave the M20 at junction 7 and follow the A249 to Sittingbourne. Alternatively, leave the M2 at junction 5 and join the same road (A249). Take the exit (it's the second exit after the M2 junction) from the A249 that is signposted Sittingbourne Industry and turn right at the roundabout at the end of the slip road, following the road towards the Sittingbourne Industrial area. Go straight over two roundabouts and then turn right at the next roundabout. Then proceed straight over two more roundabouts and then turn left at the T-junction. Follow the road and take the second turning on the left and then the first left off of this road into Symmonds Drive. The track is at the bottom of this road.
This is not an easy track to find, so leave yourself plenty of time, take a map and be ready to ask for directions! It may also be beneficial to check the web site for the circuit in order to get a more detailed map!