The three-day Silverstone Classic powered by the AA prepares to live up to its billing as the world’s biggest classic motor racing festival. This weekend’s event features more than 1,000 entries with grids that include an array of Grand Prix, GT, Le Mans, single-seater, sports and touring cars spanning the full spectrum of motorsport history. Once again both Silverstone’s National and new International Wing pits and paddock complexes will be maximised to house hundreds of the historic racing cars that will compete in a packed schedule of 24 races on the full Grand Prix track.
Adding to the spectacle more than 7,000 classic cars will be displayed during the 2012 Silverstone Classic race weekend on the Silverstone infield with many marques celebrating important milestones in their evocative histories. Notably the busy Sunday schedule includes a world record parade of 70 Ferrari F40s to mark the supercar’s 25th birthday.
“The Silverstone Classic powered by the AA just gets bigger and better every year with more and more attractions to entertain those of all generations,” confirmed Nick Wigley, Event Director. “Once again the event has attracted a stunning entry with many of the race grids heavily oversubscribed. This year’s car club displays are going to be very special, too, with so many significant motoring anniversaries being celebrated at Silverstone. Moreover our exciting new partnership with the AA has extended the festival’s massive appeal still further by offering a great range of interactive driving experiences for those of all ages. Indeed, with so much to see and do it’s no surprise that our advanced ticket sales are running at unprecedented levels and we are looking forward to welcoming a record crowd.”
Non-Stop On-Track Action
The 2012 Silverstone Classic will witness no fewer than 24 races, many boasting full 58-car grids. The line-up includes historic racing cars covering more than eight halcyon decades. The wide-ranging race card features no fewer than 100 Grand Prix cars plus grids of Le Mans, GT, Group C, Jaguar E-types, sports and touring cars providing the best of nostalgic race action. Among many highlights is the re-birth of the Daily Express International Trophy, one of the most famous prizes in motor racing history. Past winners include greats such as Stirling Moss, Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart and Graham Hill. This revived race will be for F1 cars from the Seventies and Eighties.
Special races dedicated to the memory of two of motor sport’s most respected figures, Peter Gethin and Alan Mann, will be among the highlights of the 2012 Silverstone Classic. The Peter Gethin Memorial Trophy is dedicated to the memory of F5000 racing legend Peter Gethin who passed away in December while the Alan Mann Trophy hails the achievements of Alan Mann whose Alan Mann Racing team was revered in touring and sportscar racing circles in the Sixties. Although Mann passed away in March of this year many of his evocative red and gold cars are still competing today.
This summer car clubs will be celebrating special milestones in model, marque or their own histories, notably golden anniversaries for the Lotus Elan, Triumph Spitfire and AC Cobra. The Silverstone Classic has also been selected by the MGB50 Committee as one of just three official celebrations to mark 50 years of the much-loved MGB.
Ferrari F40 Parade
A world record gathering of Ferrari F40s (numbering 70 and counting…) will celebrate 25 years of the idolised Italian supercar with a special parade on Sunday.
The UK’s first-ever BMW ‘Z-fest’ will be staged at this weekend’s Silverstone Classic. Organised by the official BMW Car Club GB, the nation’s inaugural Z-fest will see many hundreds of BMW’s popular Z1, Z3, Z4 and Z8 sportscars on display.
For those wanting to buy a classic road or racing car, Silverstone Auctions is staging a special sale in the venue’s ‘Wing’ building. A wide range of cars and automobilia will be going under the hammer with viewing on Friday and Saturday mornings before the bidding starts at midday on the Saturday (21 July).
There’s so much more fun for all ages to enjoy at the Silverstone Classic with a vintage fun fair, go-karts, aerial displays with wing walkers, the Parachute Regiment The Red Devils, hot air balloons, Punch and Judy (celebrating 350 years), rally car and 4×4 experiences plus giant TV screens showing all the on-track action. There is even a pampering centre plus a retail village with nearly 200 exhibitors presenting a wide range of autojumble, automobilia, art, jewellery, books, videos and gifts for everyone.
Another traditional Silverstone Classic forte is its ‘access all areas’ policy. General admission tickets include free entrance to all live music shows, AA World, trackside grandstand seating and both the International and Wing pits and paddock complexes. Adult tickets for 2012’s Silverstone Classic powered by the AA cost from as little as £35 (plus booking fee) and special two- and three-day weekend tickets are also available with savings of up to 20 per cent if purchased before 5pm on 19 July.
For more information, visit www.SilverstoneClassic.com.
[Source: Silverstone Classic; photo: Tim Scott / Fluid Images]