Brands Hatch Classic Festival, 22 – 23 May 2004

Preparations for Brands Hatch’s biggest motor racing event of the year are well advanced and the 2004 csma Classic Festival looks set to be the best ever. Nearly 60,000 people are expected to attend Brands over the weekend of 22 – 23 May. They will enjoy an exhilarating mix of all-day classic car and motorcycle racing, thrilling air show and non-stop family entertainment.

The Festival incorporates the MG Owners’ Club National Event, celebrating the 80th anniversary of MG with a rare display of road and competition cars – plus MG autojumble, traders and concours. The 50th anniversary of Team Lotus will be marked on both days with the appearance on track of six classic Lotus F1 cars. The line-up includes cars of the type driven by Graham Hill, Ayrton Senna, Mario Andretti, Stirling Moss and other legendary racing drivers. Classic Team Lotus will also take the opportunity to re-dedicate and sign Colin Chapman Way, the main spectator thoroughfare.

Other F1 cars will be driven in anger in a round of the EuroBOSS Championship when up to 20 ‘big open single-seater’ racing machines will battle it out in the course of 20 laps on the Indy Circuit. The crowd will be treated to fast and furious high-speed action with plenty of overtaking.

The Classic Festival also encompasses two-wheeled motorsport on both days with two rounds of the competitive Lansdowne Classic Series featuring dozens of Manx Nortons and other machines from the Sixties. Over 100 Jaguars, Mustangs, Camaros, Aston Martins, MGs and Austin Healeys will compete daily in a host of classic car races. With the big NEC exhibition opening just a couple of weeks later, Brands on 22-23 May is definitely the place to be for an exciting Motor Show preview with comprehensive displays of the latest models from leading manufacturers.

Entertainment for all the family includes an impressive air show with the famous RAF Falcons free-fall parachute team dropping in on both days plus stunt aircraft, a Spitfire flying display featuring Carolyn Grace of Channel 4’s Spitfire Ace documentary, and a mock battle staged by a helicopter-borne unit of the Royal Marines. A huge fun fair (with most of the attractions free of charge), motorcycle daredevils, jazz bands and a vast array of trade stands all add to the carnival atmosphere.

The Brands Hatch Classic Festival begins at 9am each day and the track action continues right through to 5.30pm. Advance tickets are great value at just £12 per day for adults (£20 on the day) with children under 16 admitted free. Call 01273 744773 or see www.motoringandleisure.uk.com

Text/Photos - csma Classic Festival