Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club is the city's professional football team. After playing at the Goldstone Ground for 95 years, they were forced to sell it in 1997 to pay off debts. The club spent two years ground-sharing at Gillingham before returning to the town as tenants of the Withdean Athletics Stadium. However, in 2011 the club moved to a permanent home at Falmer at the start of the 2011/12 season, with the first match happening in July 2011. The new stadium, the Falmer Stadium, was built by The Buckingham Group, who also built the MK Dons stadium. The club's notable achievements including winning promotion to the Football League First Division for the first time in 1979, staying there for four seasons, during the last of which they reached the FA Cup final and took Manchester United to a replay before losing 4–0. Notable former managers of the club include Brian Clough, Peter Taylor (born 1928), Peter Taylor (born 1953), Jimmy Melia, Liam Brady, Jimmy Case, Steve Gritt, Brian Horton, Steve Coppell and Mark McGhee. Notable former players include Gareth Barry, Dave Beasant, Justin Fashanu, Dennis Mortimer, Gordon Smith, Frank Stapleton, Howard Wilkinson and Bobby Zamora.
Brighton and Hove is also home to the Sussex County Cricket Club based on Eaton Road in Hove.
Throughout the year many events take place on Madeira Drive (a piece of roadway on Brighton's seafront), which was constructed in order to host what is commonly held to be the world's oldest motor race, the Brighton Speed Trials, which has been running since 1905. The event is organised by the Brighton and Hove Motor Club and normally takes place on the second Saturday in September each year.
There is also an from time to time a beach soccer competition in a temporary stadium on imported sand on the beach. The inaugural contest in June 2002 featured football stars such as Eric Cantona and Matt Le Tissier.
Brighton has a horse-racing course, Brighton Racecourse, with the unusual feature that when the full length of the course is to be used, some of the grass turf of the track has to be laid over the tar at the top of Wilson Avenue, a public road, which therefore has to be closed for the races.
There is a greyhound racing circuit in Hove, run by Coral, at which Motorcycle speedway racing was staged in 1928.
Basketball team Brighton Bears were in the British Basketball League before dropping out at the end of the 2005/06 season. Their home venue was at The Triangle Leisure Centre in Burgess Hill.
Brighton Ultimate, an ultimate Frisbee team was set up in 1985.
The Brighton and Hove Petanque Club runs an annual triples, doubles and singles competition, informal KOs, winter and summer league, plus Open competitions with other clubs. The club is affiliated to Sussex Pétanque, the local region of the English Pétanque Association, so they can also play at a Regional and National level. The Peace Statue terrain is the official pétanque terrain situated on the seafront near the West Pier.
There are yachting clubs and other boating activities run from Brighton Marina.
Brighton has two competitive swimming clubs. Brighton SC formed in 1860 claims to be the oldest swimming club in England. Brighton Dolphin SC was formed in 1891 as Brighton Ladies Swimming
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