again 1991 was a pivotal year for drag racing and, under the energetic guidance of racer Ross Freestone and the newly formed Tamworth Drag Racing Association, the sport sprung into life on a section of road designed as access to the local abattoir.
The first event on the makeshift eighth-mile track was staged in September ’91 with a crowd of over 7500 and a strong competitor turnout from both NSW and Queensland, including some of the top stars of the day. Entry numbers were so surprisingly high that it was found impossible to complete the program of events, so subsequent events were converted to invitation only.
Events became an annual affair, with solid spectator turnouts of up to 8000, until 1993 when industrial developments around the site finally stopped its use.
The sport didn’t go away, however, and activities moved to Gunnedah and Glen Innes where they still continue on the local airfields four to five times per year. In Tamworth there has long been talk of a motor racing complex to incorporate a drag strip, as well as a circuit for the local sporting car club. However, noise tests – the bane of drag racing’s life – have created ongoing obstacles for the drag racers and the sporting car people have recently pulled out of the 50/50 deal with the drag races and instead gone with an extension of facilities at the go-kart track which is already on-site. This has made the cost burden for the drag racers much higher.