WHAT IS AUTOGRASS?
Autograss is a non-contact motorsport that takes place on an oval (approximately 400 metre) track using a natural soil surface. Due to the close nature of the racing, thrills and spills are never far away. There are several differing classes of car, from near standard minis or small hatchbacks through to spaceframed single seaters with monster V8 or twin motorbike power!
Up to 8 cars start on a straight line grid and race over short 4-8 lap races. This results in the major meetings, most of which are staged over 2 days, offering upwards of 200 races. All classes normally race through qualifying heats and finals and, if time permits, open races where different classes race against each other.
The social side of the sport is a very large factor in its appeal and friends from all over the country meet and catch up at the “larger” events. The family nature of the sport is important – sometimes all members of a family can share the same racing car, although juniors (12-16 yrs) are restricted to two less powerful classes for obvious reasons!
No autograss event requires competitors to enter prior to the day and (with the exception of the National Championships, which require qualification/registration) any NASA licence holder can race at any NASA meeting just by turning up with a car that meets the national construction rules for its class. This even applies to rounds of the British Autograss Series (BAS) which is a number of events throughout the season over which points are accumulated to produce class and overall champions.
Racing licences are available for men, ladies and juniors. Also available are mechanics and social licences for those who do not wish to race but would like to be part of this very affordable motor sport. It is first and foremost an amateur sport, so there are always plenty of opportunities to join in and help to run your local club! As time goes by, there are also chances to become more involved with the sport on a higher organisational level, or simply to turn up and continue enjoying your racing!
If you would like to know more, the best place to start is at a local race meeting – see the fixtures page of this website, or look at the links page to find the nearest club to you. When you attend an Autograss event, you can speak with the people there who will be more than happy to give you more information. Alternatively, on the Contact Us page there are contact numbers for the sport’s board of directors who will be more than happy to help.
Highly spectacular to watch, it is first and foremost a participant sport. Race meetings are promoted by non-profit making clubs such as SSAC and WMRC, which are affiliated to the governing body via their League (Southern Autograss League in our case), the National Autograss Sports Association (NASA).
The race tracks are laid out on natural surfaces (usually a farmer’s field) – with a fresh track starting off as grass, but that won’t last long!
The track will be constructed by club members in the days/weeks before the event, and the competing drivers are also expected to help out with the organisation on the day via duties such as marshaling, pits control, scrutineering, commentary to name but a few.
Autograss is a true family sport – anyone can take part.
Junior drivers may start racing at 12 years old, moving into the adult classes at 16, and some drivers are racing competitively well into their 60s and 70s.
Ladies’ only races are held at every meeting and the sharing of cars between family members is encouraged.
AUTOGRASS is well known for being the affordable motor sport.
You can race in the most basic classes (such as Class 1, for standard 1000cc Minis with only safety modifications) for an initial outlay of under £500 and minimal running costs.
There are ten classes of car ranging from production saloons, through progressively wilder Modified machinery to the super-fast single-seat Specials. Even in the top classes, however, budgets will be significantly less than those required to be competitive in Circuit Racing, Oval Racing, Rallying or Rallycross.
We look forward to seeing you at a meeting and will be very surprised if your first meeting is your last!