Location: Cumbria

Facility type: Test and Proving Ground

Length: 2.5 km

Additional info: 

In October 2013 Apex were contracted by Northern Developments (on behalf of M-Sport) to assist in the preparation of information for a planning submission for the development of an automotive evaluation centre at the M-Sport Headquarters, Dovenby Hall, Cumbria.

The Apex designed facility will primarily be used by M-Sport engineers to evaluate vehicles that have been developed on site, however there is a commercial case to use the facility for corporate and manufacturer experience activity. M-Sport currently visit nearby evaluation centres prior to competition and retail.

By bringing this activity on site alongside all the existing manufacturing & engine testing facilities, the organisation will create a unique facility in this part of the UK offering complete R&D – Testing & Evaluation – Manufacturing & production facilities. Whilst also benefitting from reduced testing and logistics costs, the facility will also reduce otherwise unavoidable staff down time due to travel to and from other facilities nationwide and thus improving the organisations carbon footprint.

M-Sport have recently developed a very successful relationship with Bentley that has led to the development of the new Bentley Continental GT3 for competition. So, with the development of multiple vehicles on site, the requirement for a suitable private evaluation centre is more evident. The M-Sport Evaluation Centre design incorporates the following key features:

  • 2.53km Handling Circuit
  • A straight of 750m
  • A multitude of permutation options
  • A 70m, low friction, steady state cornering pad – Accessed via the track but could be separated from the track to allow for independent operation
  • High and low speed corner sequencing to allow for the testing of various car setup parameters
  • Over 13m of elevation change along the track centre line challenges drivers and vehicle capability alike

Planning consent was awarded in early 2015 and construction will be completed early 2018.