Monday 1st May 1978
The Arena Essex Raceway, a quarter mile stock car and speedway racing track located near Purfleet, Essex (UK), built in the remains of an old cement works overspill site, opened. The first stock car race meeting was infamously ruined by a heavy downpour. The track originally had a post and rope fence, which caused some colossal crashes and wrecks in the banger formula, and caught a few of the hot rods out. In the late 90’s the track swapped the post and rope for an Armco barrier, catchfences were also put in place to protect spectators. Every September, the track hosts the oldest National World Final Championship. It’s been running for over 40 years. Just over 40 cars, plus qualifiers from the wild card race, compete in the world final. 125 to 175 cars compete in the race meeting. The winner from the previous year starts the final in last place.