During the boom era, Ireland was a hotspot for street racing. Organised illegal events were run on practically a nightly basis and it wasn't uncommon for hundreds of cars to show up. One of the most infamous spots in Ireland was 'the port road' a dead end route that lead into Waterford harbour. As far as illegal street racing goes, it was about as safe a spot as you could get. The systems and signals in place to ensure the safety of those in attendance were simply fascinating to watch.
Skip forward to today and although it has quietened down considerably, the port is still a hotspot for local drivers to meet up and race. Even as I write this, I can hear the sound of a vanishing VTEC in the distance through an open office window.
Most will condemn these people for racing on the public roads and although it's not a water tight excuse, Ireland still has no facilities to accomodate those who want to race a friend or to quench that thirst for speed and acceleration.
But there is a light at the end of the tunnel. In a yard somewhere in the midlands, a group of like minded people have gotten together to create an area for people to let off steam and burn rubber. It's not pretty but it's a start.
Over the next two weeks I'm taking to the road to seek out street racing and to try and examine why it's still happening. Likewise I'm going to be attending an organised meeting at one of Ireland's first legal drag strips to see the future of drag racing in Ireland.
What sort of questions would you guys put to the illegal / legal racers ?
Can you condone street racing if there is no legal alternative ?
It maybe a controversial / taboo subject but I reckon it's time we stood up and really took a closer look.