Racing Around The World – Blauwhuis, The Netherlands.

Blauwhuis is situated in the North West of the Netherlands in the province of Friesland just a few miles West of Sneek and just off the A7 (E22).

Currently Blauwhuis is a Clay ‘dirt’ track. A new Steel plate wall has been added on the exit of turn two which runs over half way down the back straight.

The 'NEW' Steel Plate Wall down the back straight. Photo Stephen Cording

Previously this was open with a wide deep dyke. The addition of this wall has narrowed the track a little on this section but in doing so it keeps the cars on the track and out the water. This keeping the cars on the track and out the dyke has increased the ‘flat out sideaways speeds’ the drivers can now reach going round turns one and two. I thought it was quite mental on my previous visit in 2008. The new configuration has just taken it to an even higher level of mental !!

Looking up the backstraight from turn 3. Photo Stephen Cording

The infield of the track is protected by a number of earth banks of various heights and steepness. Some you can ride, some you can’t. At various points around the infield banking there are indeed flat ‘exit routes’ to enable drivers an escape route to the infield.

Going into turn three a small section of dyke remains before an earth wall goes round turns three and four.

Exiting turn four onto the home straight, a long narrow dyke is your method of keeping cars on the track.

The Home Straight with the little dyke on the outside. Photo Stephen Cording

Turns one and two are a big sweeping turn with space to really throw the back end out flat out, only don’t go too fast and not enough sideways through this turn or you run the risk of #1 sliding into the dyke around one and two or #2 slamming into the new steel wall.

View form the deep sweeping Turn 1 & 2. Photo Stephen Cording

There is your rough guide to the track so now onto the racing. What is Dutch Field racing?
Field racing is very different from conventional UK Shale Racing, well, modern UK racing in general.

Flat Out and Hangin' On. Photo Stephen Cording

How can you best describe it. Flat Out. Unlike UK Shale racing, the clay dirt tracks invite flat out, foot full down racing. It really is quite hard to describe, it’s just different. Drivers still race to win, but in a different style. There is still contact, bumper work and last benders but just different. Don’t be fooled by the longer looking heavy metal cars, they are far from ‘junk yard’. They are heavy metal for a reason.
Below is a short clip of the opening lap of the Queens Day Final. I think this gives a better idea of what Dutch Field Racing is.

I’m hooked, I love it. To get the most out of Dutch Field Racing forget everything about UK racing. Forget the format, the results, points and routine.
A good Field meeting will consist of 9 F1 Heats with each driver racing in three heats, points scored and surviving cars move onto the meeting final.
Field meetings run quite different. 6 hours is not unusual for an entire meeting length but on this visit the meeting run over 8 hours !! That’s just the way it’s done. Except that and you’ll get so much more out of your day – Take your watch off and just enjoy your ‘day out’

Foot Down All The Way. Photo Stephen Cording

Track prep is second to none and the equipment used to work the track is of the highest class.

Track Prep Work is carried out throughout the day. Photo Stephen Cording

Various food outlets can be found around the track for hot & cold food as well as beverage outlets. There are no restrictions on bringing your own food and drink to the track (including alcohol) or seating. Many families bring cool boxes for picnic style days out while the younger spectators enjoy sharing a beer or two, with a party atmosphere in the crowd. I did not witness any excessive drunkenness or hostility. Guys and girls drinking beer mixed quite happily with families enjoying a day out.

More Racing Around The World In the Netherlands:
> Sint Maarten 2009
> Emmen 2010
> Lelystad 2010

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