About Motorsport in Northern Ireland

Motorsport is diverse with a wide range of different disciplines for both cars and motorbikes. In Northern Ireland, the sport is governed and managed by four Governing and Co-ordinating Bodies all of which work within the regulations set down by the national and international governing bodies to which they are affiliated.

  • The Association of Northern Ireland Car Clubs (ANICC);
  • The Motorcycle Union of Ireland – Ulster Centre (MCUI-UC);
  • The Motorcycle Racing Association (MRA); and
  • The North of Ireland Karting Association (NIKA)

The 2&4 Wheel Motorsport Steering Group Limited (2&4 Wheels) was formed in 2002 as the umbrella organisation for motor sport in Northern Ireland. It brought together the four principal governing bodies / Co-ordinating bodies for motorsport in Northern Ireland. It represents the common and shared interests of the four governing bodies of regulated motor sport in Northern Ireland and liaises with government on key issues which are common to the sports.

The role of the Board of 2&4 Wheel Motorsport is to set the strategic direction for motorsport in Northern Ireland. Two directors and two alternates per Governing body/ Co-ordinating body represent these four bodies on the board of 2&4 Wheel Motorsport. In addition, the Board includes an independent Chairman and independent Company Secretary. In total there are ten directors and eight alternates on the Board. All four governing bodies work within the regulations set down by the national and international governing bodies to which they are affiliated.

Northern Ireland has three permanent circuits: Kirkistown Motor Racing Circuit – Kircubbin; Nutts Corner Circuit – Crumlin; and Bishopscourt Circuit – Downpatrick.

Governance Structure of Motorsport

About the Governing Bodies


THE FÉDÉRATION INTERNATIONALE DE L’AUTOMOBILE (FIA) (INTERNATIONAL AUTOMOBILE FEDERATION) was established in 1904. Its initial aim was to bring coherent governance and safety to motor sport. FIA promotes motor sport and safe, sustainable and accessible mobility for all road users across the world. The federation works across three key interlinked areas of activity – Sport, Campaigns and Mobility. In the realm of Mobility, the FIA aims to ensure that safe, affordable and clean systems of transport are available to all. The promotion of safe and sustainable forms of mobility has in turn led the FIA to commit to global sustainability initiatives and also to found its own major response to road safety concerns, FIA Action for Road Safety.

As the governing body of motor sport, the FIA ensures that fair, capably regulated and above all safe events are conducted in all corners of the globe. The FIA’s goal is simple – to keep people moving, safely and dynamically. The FIA operates, regulates and adjudicates at hundreds of events in a huge variety of series each year. From providing regulatory expertise and an impartial sporting judicial system to the federation’s recent embrace of the World Anti-Doping Agency code to combat the use of drugs in sport, the FIA is the world arbiter for motor sport.

In 2004, the FIA Institute was created to further the rapid development of new and improved safety technologies, to facilitate higher standards of education and training, and to raise awareness of safety and sustainability issues. The FIA’s message is simple: ‘You are in safe hands’.

MOTORSPORT UK is the national membership organisation and governing body for four-wheel motorsport in the UK, representing competitors, volunteers, clubs and fans. It encompasses 720 affiliated motor clubs, 30,000 competition licence holders, 10,000 volunteer marshals, 4,000 officials and a legion of passionate motorsport spectators and fans. It issues over 5,000 event permits every year providing everyone with the opportunity to get close to the action. Motorsport UK is a not-for-profit organisation (limited by guarantee) that exists to service and grow the sport.

In 2019, the constitution of Motorsport UK was changed. As a result the Motorsport UK Board become the ultimate decision-making body in the governance of UK motorsport. This has historically been the role of the Motorsport Council, which will now become the body that informs and advises the Board on key issues affecting motorsport, helping to shape strategy and promoting the sport in the UK. The Board will be made up of a greater proportion of independent non-executive directors, in addition to the members representing the sport’s direct interests.

The Council will expand significantly to include representatives of a wider range of stakeholders, including motorsport venues, broader motorsport activities such as commercial karting and the motorsport industry in general. This will allow a greater range of views to be considered and ensure the governing body better reflects the whole sport.

THE ASSOCIATION OF NORTHERN IRELAND CAR CLUBS (ANICC) is affiliated to Motorsport UK (formerly the Motor Sports Association or MSA). ANICC coordinates Car Racing and Rallying, Autotest, Hillclimbs and Trials, Sprints, Cross Country and Navigation. It applies the rules and processes set by the Motorsport UK.It has 33 clubs comprising 3,790 members and 1,435 competition licence holders and runs approximately 162 competitions per annum.

The ANICC aims to harmonise and assemble the dates, to promote the Northern Ireland Championships, to liaise with its own and other Governing bodies of the sport and with Government Departments, Sports Councils, the Lottery Fund and other sources of grant aid. It aims to provide assistance and guidance to all its clubs and competitors in promoting its sport.

THE ANICC Council consists of elected ANICC Officers (of which there are eight), Northern Ireland Championship Coordinators, individual ANICC Specialist Committee Chairmen and current members of Motorsport UK Specialist Committees, together with former ANICC Officers and former Motorsport UK Specialist Committee members, who should serve on the ANICC Council for at least two years following retirement. It currently has three Specialist Committees
(SCs) – Autotest SC; Race and Speed Events SC; Stage Rally SC.

THE NORTH OF IRELAND KARTING ASSOCIATION (NIKA) organises karting in Northern Ireland, applying the rules and processes set by the Motorsport UK. It is affiliated to Motorsport UK.

It has four member clubs, along with 200 affiliated members and 150 competition holders. It runs approximately 21 events per annum. These are: 500 Motor Racing Club of Ireland; Bishopscourt Kart Club; Coleraine & District Motor Club; Ulster Karting Club.

Its primary role is to co-ordinate race dates between clubs; organise the Northern Ireland Karting Championships; issue race numbers for all events in Northern Ireland; maintain consistent rules at all clubs, under the approval of Motorsport UK; liaise with external bodies to secure funding; and represent Northern Ireland karting as part of the Motorsport UK Regional Kart Committee.


under the name of Fédération Internationale des Clubs Motocyclistes.

It consists of 111 national affiliated members – National Motorcycle Federations (FMN). The Motorcycle Union of Ireland is an affiliated Federation.

The Board of Directors is composed of: President; Deputy President; One Vice-President; Four Members of the Board; Six Presidents of Continental Unions.

The Executive Board is composed of the President, the Deputy President, the Vice-President and a CONU President representing the Continental Unions. The Chief Executive Officer is a member of the Board of Directors and the Executive Board without voting rights. The Board of Directors meets four times per year. The President and the Members of the Board are elected by the General Assembly (four year mandates). The two Vice-Presidents are appointed by the Board and the Deputy President is proposed by the President.

Motorcycling sport is run, at FIM World Championships and Prizes level, in six different disciplines namely – Road Racing; Motocross; Trials; Enduro; The Cross-Country Rallies; Track Racing. All this represents a total of 59 FIM World Championships and Prizes.

THE MOTOR CYCLE UNION OF IRELAND (MCUI) is the overall governing body and consists of the Motorcycling Ireland, the Motor Cycle Union of Ireland (Ulster Centre) Limited, the Motor Cycle Racing Association (Ireland) Limited (the MRA) and any such Centre’s or Bodies as may from time to time be formed.

The jurisdiction of the Southern Centre covers the Provinces of Leinster, Munster and Connaught and that of the Ulster Centre and MRA, the Province of Ulster.

The Motor Cycle Union of Ireland Ulster Centre controls Road Racing, Short Circuits and Trials. The MRA controls Motocross, Grass Tracks, Super Motos and Enduros. The Union delegates the management of its affairs to Sporting Commissions representing: A/ Road Race; B/ Short Circuits; C/ Motocross and Enduro; D/ Trials; E/ Touring; F/ Veteran and Vintage; and G/ Medical Panel.

The Motorcycling Union of Ireland is an affiliate member of FIM.

THE MOTORCYCLE UNION OF IRELAND – ULSTER CENTRE (MCUI UC) is the governing body responsible for Road Racing, Short Circuits and Trials within the nine counties of Ulster and was founded on the 9th January 1903. Its objectives are to make and administer rules to govern and control the sport and pastime of motorcycling; to promote motorcycling in its different forms; to protect and safe-guard members of the Union as far as possible in the exercise of all their legal rights as motorists; and to protect the interests of Irish Motorcyclists by entering into relations with the governing bodies of motorcycling in other countries.The MCUI UC is affiliated through the MCUI to the FIM, and subsequently are signed up to World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) protocols for Anti-Doping regulations, and has a full range of policies in place for Safeguarding, Equal Opportunities, Social Media, etc.

The Motorcycle Union of Ireland – Ulster Centre consists of 25 affiliated clubs/bodies which, together with a number of appointed officials, form the Council of the Centre. It has approximately 1,200 members. It has 400 competitive licence holders and runs approximately 31 events per annum. The Business of the Centre is conducted by a number of specialist committees appointed by the Council at the Annual General Meeting.

THE MOTORCYCLE RACING ASSOCIATION IRELAND LTD. (MRA) is the governing body responsible for the promotion of Motocross, Enduro, Grass Tracks, Quadcross, Sidecarcross and Supermoto events in Ulster.

The Association consists of 19 affiliated Clubs covering all nine Counties of Ulster, with around 1100 members and just over 700 competition licence holders, promoting around 85 events annually for Youth and Adults. Youth competitions include motocross & Quad Championships and recently introduced Youth Sidecarcross events. With Adult Championships and races for Adult Solo, Adult Quads, Supermoto, Enduro and Sidecarcross events.

MRA Clubs also host British Championship events as well as Ulster and Irish Championship events which are widely recognised as the best in their respective series, and MRA riders compete at the highest level in the British, European and World stage.

MRA has developed a new Coaching strategy, and is affiliated through the MCUI to the FIM, and subsequently are signed up to WADA protocols for Anti-Doping regulations, and additionally have a full range of policies in place for Safeguarding, Equality & Diversity, Conflict of Interest, Complaints & Disciplinary policies, etc.

The sport is governed locally with monthly association meetings open to delegates from all nineteen affiliated Clubs In addition a newly introduced General Sporting Committee made up from one member of each Promoting Club and this Committee meets asrequiredtodiscussYouthandAdulteventmatters. TheMRAarealsopartnerswithMotorcyclingIrelandtogovernIrish Championship events and select Teams for the various International Team events, the Solo Motocross of Nations, Quadcross, & Sidecarcross of Nations as well as the Under 21 Competition the Coupe de l’Avenir and the Classic of Nations.

The Motocross tracks used in Ulster used by MRA are Desertmartin, Laurelbank in Saintfield, Seaforde in Downpatrick, Tinkerhill in Newry, Tandragee, Claudy in Londonderry and Loughbrickland in Co Down.