When we arrive home on Sunday, flushed with the pleasures of this weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed, there isn’t long to wait before the next fix of top-class historic race cars. Just two weeks after the Festival, the Silverstone Classic is ready to delight spectators with 21 races on the full Silverstone Grand Prix circuit, including a Saturday evening ‘dusk race’.
The Classic promises us more than 650 historic race cars, piloted by some 900 drivers: with a tremendous mix of F1, GP, Group C, sportscars, GT, saloons, and far more besides.
One of the key themes of this year’s Silverstone Classic is Le Mans: there will be Le Mans-type cars from as early as the 1920s, right through to the late 1980s, culminating in a 90-minute Group C race on Sunday afternoon for the Porsches, Jaguars, Nissans, Mercedes and Aston Martins of that golden era of endurance sportscar racing.
But it’s not all racing. Group B rally cars from Ford RS200 and Audi Sport Quattro, to Peugeot 205T16, Lancia 037 and MG Metro 6R4, will be put through their paces on a special stage at the Becketts end of the National Straight, with the first session on Friday afternoon followed by three sessions on Saturday and two on Sunday.
Meanwhile, more than 60 car clubs will be displaying their marques (with particular emphasis on Lotus, Porsche, Ferrari and Jaguar); some 30 automotive artists will be featured in the art and photographic gallery; the Scarf and Goggles will host live music from Imagine the Beatles, Soul Convention and The Peter O’Donnell Duo & Quartet; and air displays will see Spitfire, Hawker Hunter and Mustang cruising the skies, alongside wing-walkers, parachute displays and hot air balloons.
Bonhams will be holding a specialist Porsche and Lotus sale, with road cars, race cars and related automobilia, while you can also exercise your wallet at the 100-plus trade stands, where everything from automotive items to antiques and crafts will be on sale.
Tickets are priced from £30 per day, via +44(0)8717 03 38 48 (office hours) or www.silverstoneclassic.com. Friday is limited to qualifying, with all races held on Saturday or Sunday. Grandstand seating is free.
Text: Charis Whitcombe
Photos: Roger Dixon - all strictly copyright. For further information please visit www.rogerdixonphotography.com
ClassicInside - The Classic Driver Newsletter