Tuesday 19th October 2021
Different Engines were heard last Tuesday as the RAF Motorsports Association (RAFMSA) held an open day at Royal Air Force Wittering, home of the RAF Support Force.
Through the logistics and engineering squadrons of the Support Force and A4 Force Elements, the Cambridgeshire Station is the centre of RAF Driving. Driving of a different kind, however, took centre stage on Tuesday when the RAF Motorsports Association (RAFMSA) held an open event for military and civilian personnel.
Squadron Leader Emma Lacey is a communications engineer, working in Support Force Headquarters at RAF Wittering. Like many engineers, she is a lifelong motorsports fan and is the engagement officer for RAFMSA.
Emma said: “There is something for everyone in motorsports, and we’ve been able to show our people the range of activities and different disciplines it includes. It’s been brilliant.”
Visitors got the inside track on a breath-taking display of hot-hatches, rally-cars, karts, motorbikes and off-road vehicles. For those who were particularly keen, participation events allowed personnel to get a taste and try some of the lower powered vehicles. Of course, No 2 Mechanical Transport Squadron set up a static display of their vehicles.
First formed in 1961, RAFMSA is the officially recognised body of the RAF that encourages participation in motorsports. As well as running its own competitions and championships, its members compete and officiate in other motorsports events at local, national and international level.
Squadron Leader Lacey said: “If you want to attract drivers and encourage an interest in motorsports, this is the place to do it. Almost all the Support Force squadrons here have drivers because they are deployable, high-readiness units and they must be ready to move, it’s what they do.”
Events of this kind need careful planning and execution. RAF Wittering personnel played a major role in supporting the event, providing public address systems, catering, and managing the access and amenities for the day. Visitors who fancied trying the karts were given an opportunity by the members of the Station Karting Club.
Taking part in RAF motorsports has real benefits for people working in the Support Force. Drivers, engineers, fuels specialists and logistics personnel can all develop and share their skills through motorsports. Taking part in sport and arduous activity is supported in the RAF as it promotes mental and physical health, personal discipline and team spirit.
Wing Commander Jez Case is the Station Commander at RAF Wittering. He said: “It has been a pleasure to host the RAFMSA Open Day at RAF Wittering and expose our personnel to what the RAF has to offer. The RAFMSA offers our personnel significant opportunities to improve their engineering skills in a fun way and transfer them back to their day jobs – making our personnel more effective.”
To find out more about The RAF Motorsports Association (RAFMSA) visit, RAF Sports Federation
See also: Sport in the RAF