Bahamas Speed Week Revival

nassau speed week

A Le Mans start was the standard for sports car races in the fifties and sixties.

The First Bahamas Speed Week in 1954 was the vision of one man, Sherman ‘Red’ Crise who had seen racing growing in the United States much as in England on old military airfields. Crise had his eye on the old Windsor Airfield in Nassau and, with the help of local businessman Sir Sydney Oakes, the first Bahamas Speed Week took place.

Following the first, mainly local, affair word soon spread that Nassau, Bahamas were a pretty good place to end up the season and soon drivers of the calibre of Stirling Moss, Phil Hill and Caroll Shelby were competing in cars seen elsewhere on events of the calibre of Le Mans 24H and the Mille Miglia.  The Bahamas Speed Week had arrived.

By the end of the fifties the event had outgrown the old airfield at Windsor and moved to a site at Oakes Field. The programme had expanded and become more varied including a Residents Race, a Formula Junior grid followed by a Formula Vee group as well as the traditional big Sports and GT cars.

The great road racing Ferraris and Maseratis of the fifties now gave way to the Americans and the old saying  ‘There’s no substitute for cubic inches’ was never more true than at Nassau. The Chevrolet Grand Sports took on the Cobras while Jim Hall brought his Chaparalls and Roger Penske his Zerex Special and Lola T70s. A young Bruce McLaren had arrived with a sports car of his own design, the Ferrari GTO had given way to the rear engined Ferrari 250LM,  the Ford GT40 was present in numbers and the Chaparral 2E had enormous wings. The world, and racing, was changing and it was time to move on, the Bahamas Speed Weeks were no more…

Bahamas Speed Week Revival has confirmed an agreement  with the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism to create a revival in the spirit of the original and will be extending invitations to past and present drivers and car owners to take part in this exciting new venture. The Nassau Speed Week will again take place on it’s traditional date from 30th November to 4th December 2010.  The 1st Bahamas Speed Week Revival will provide an opportunity for some of the very greatest cars from the period 1954-1966 to tour New Providence Island and drive on the old venue at Oakes Field.

> Bahamas Speed Week Revival (official website)
> Bahamas Speed Week (veloce publishing)