One of a handful of permanent circuits in Northern Ireland, Bishopscourt began life as a World War Two airfield and is now one of the premier facilities in the country, having undergone considerable investment in recent years. Now host to a bustling calendar of club and national races, the track has seen motorsport activity take place in two phases, with its military connections causing a hiatus during the province’s turbulent political history in the 1970s, only to be revived in the 1990s.
The original airfield was commissioned by the RAF in 1941 and was finally operational two years later. Envisaged as a base for bomber aircraft, it boasted a main runway of 2,000 yards and two subsidiaries of 1,4000 yards each. On its opening in April 1943 it was allocated to RAF Flying Training Command and hosted a range of units including Nos. 664 and 671 Gliding Schools and 819 Naval Air Squadron. It was also home to No. 7 Air Observers School and No. 12 Air Gunners School and post-war was an Air Navigation School.