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When people think of England, they think of Fish and Chips, Quaint Pubs, Cricket, Eccentrics and stately homes with huge landscaped gardens and follies.

The trouble with landscaped gardens or cricket pitches is lots of work to keep them tidy and looking their best, which is why in 1830 Edwin Budding invented the first lawn mower. Steam Powered mowers came in the late 1800’s and petrol engines came in the early 1900’s. using engines not dissimilar to early motorcycle engines. Which is why I was tempted to investigate more.

Now it is known that once an appliance has wheels, people will want to race however it took until 1973 when a group of eccentrics dreamt up lawn mower racing over a few pints in a West Sussex country pub. As I know the pub reasonably well this does not surprise me.

There are now races around the country and abroad, all professionally managed by the British Lawn Mower Racing Association there is even a 12-hour race held in Sussex in August.

So, on a Saturday morning in May I realised that they were racing at a farm just a stone’s throw away from home. I decided to investigate more.

There are 4 classes the first for pushing a mower, which they are looking for more enthusiastic members for bringing the original class back and alive, class two for mowers with a seat, class 3 for small ride on mowers and class 4 for small tractor style mowers.

There are some simple safety rules (removal of blades etc) and a simple ethos of having fun. It must be said that they really do put there all into the racing, its close, its manic and all seem to have a big grin. No fancy advertising, locations, burger vans, or flash set brings a great grass roots feel to the event.

Chatting to some spectators, they told me that they decided to join in as this was more fun than bike racing, more affordable and just that bit oddball too. There are some serious modifications going on too, and in the way of the best motorsports some serious bodging also.

 A fabulous was to have a bit of fun, check out their website for details of other events and the manic 12-hour race.