In the 1920' and 30's Southport was second to the famous Brooklands Motor racing circuit and
many famous names competed in the races regularly held on the beach.
In April 1926 Henry Seagrave returned to the beach to contest the Land Speed record, then
standing at 150.76 MPH. The vehicle he used was a V12 car built for him by the Sunbeam Motor Company,
an article in the Southport Visitor graphically describes it :
"In April 1926 Henry Seagrave set a new world land speed record of 152.308 mph on Southport Sands,
the car held it's speed for the kilometer but after this distance had been passed his speed reduced
considerably because the car hit a bump which threw the car 10" into the air the car travelled 48'
through the air but was only off the ground for 1/8th of a second during which time the engine reved up,
there were three sharp explosions, the super charger blew up reducing the speed of the car so that the
record was only set for the kilometer and not the mile."
During the attempt to crack the record the roughness of the beach managed to crack 6 supercharger housings !
Parry Thomas, the famous Leyland Motors Engineer, was there to witness the record attempt and in the
evening the earl of Cottenham, Parry Thomas & Seagrave held a private dinner at the Palace Hotel to
celebrate the record.
This website is in the process of being updated. March 2016.
If you have any information on record attempts on Southport's beach please e-mail me
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