Bryar: Where it all Started

Bryar was a much-loved track, offering it’s road-racing circuit in Loudon, New Hampshire to SCCA Trans-Am, National and Regional club racing events. What started as a upgraded kart track, became a permanent 1.6 mile road course in 1964. Trans-Am arrived in 1966, but it remained primarily a club track throughout the 1970’s and 1980’s.

During that time, NER raced at Thompson and Lime Rock, in addition to Bryar. LRP was shared with three other regions, and then the road course at Thompson was discontinued late in the decade of the 70’s. While the loss of Thompson was not ideal, the region was still able to offer events 5 times a year at Lime Rock and a few times a year at Bryar.

Rendering of Bryar

But by 1989, Keith Bryar was in failing health, and the facilities had deteriorated. This opened the door for Bob Bahre, who with the promise of bringing NASCAR Winston Cup races, purchased the track with plans to build a one-mile oval. Due in a large part to the efforts of NER legend Ted Goddard, the new owner was convinced to retain a road course and NHIS was born.

NHIS Keeps NER Racing Alive

While Bahre was building his new track on the Loudon site, Lime Rock was becoming more difficult to race at. The track developed other spectator
events to fill their limited available weekends and slowly the five SCCA weekends became one, and the four SCCA regions who could race there became just NER. With Thompson gone, Lime Rock limited to one event, the New Hampshire track was our only option.

By ensuring a road course option was a part of the design, NHIS became the savior of SCCA road racing in New England. With Ted Goddard as the operations manager, as well as long time NER member Bette French managing the track, their commitment to supporting NER club racing insured that NHIS was a welcome home for NER throughout the 1990’s and 2000’s, hosting 5 or 6 weekends a year.

Fast-forward to 2023, and we now sit flush with road courses, six available in New England, with NER regularly scheduling eight events a year at four of them – LRP, Thompson, Palmer and NHMS. It is hard to imagine at one time, we were down to essentially one. Without NHMS, NER might not be the large, thriving region that it is today. Our current situation would be much different if NHMS had not supported the club so fully during those decades.

Ground breaking of the new NHIS.

NHMS Homecoming Weekend

This weekend, we honor that legacy of New Hampshire Motor Speedway and it’s long history of providing a home for NER club racing. Join us this weekend, July 29-30, as we pay homage to the track, and its management, that were an integral part in our history, growth and development through the decades.

Register now to compete as a driver here.

Or volunteer to be a worker here.

Either way, come out and play as we compete in NERRC #4, Homecoming Weekend at NHMS.