By Simon & Janet Wright.
Over 100,000 visitors attended the World’s biggest classic motor racing festival, the three day celebration of classic motorsport, the Silver Jubilee Silverstone Classic. With the UK basking in the middle of a tropical heatwave, the 21 race programme over the weekend certainly provided a great variety of action for the spectators. This year the theme of the event was Touring car racing, in honour of the 60th anniversary of the British Touring Car Championship. There were several different Saloon car races, mainly on Sunday, with the HSCC U2TC, the Jet Super Touring Car Trophy race and the Transatlantic Trophy for Pre ’66 Touring Cars, plus a special Historic Touring Car Challenge race. This covered a wide range of cars, from the Austin Mini Cooper S and Ford Lotus Cortina, through the Ford Sierra Cosworth RS500 and Rover SD1, the Jaguar XJ12 and the BMW 3.0 CSL and up to the Honda Accord and Audi A4.
On the single seater front, there was possibly the largest collection of Formula Junior cars taking part in two separate races for 1958-1960 cars and for 1961-1963 cars. At the other end of the single seater range were the FIA Masters Historic Formula One races which included some of the iconic Grand Prix cars from the 1970s and 80s, including Williams, Hesketh, Arrows, Shadows and even a Matra for good measure.
Sports cars and GT had various races covering different periods with a new race this year for the Masters Endurance Legends for newer Le Mans racers, which also saw Olympic Gold Medal winner Sir Chris Hoy competing.
Away from the track, there are thousands of cars on display in the infield area of the circuit. Many car clubs now use the Classic as their annual club event, and the cars on display range from Ferrari, Lamborghini, Aston Martin and Porsche through more popular cars like Fords and the classic Mini. The Classic likes to celebrate anniversaries and this year there were quite a few significant events such as the 70th anniversary of the Jaguar XK, the 50th anniversary of the Jaguar XJ, the 50th anniversary of the Ferrari Daytona 365 GTB/4 and the 70th anniversary of the Porsche 356, plus lots of others. Owners were given the chance to parade around the circuit during the lunch breaks during all three days of the event.
Race winners included:
Jim Clark Trophy Formula Junior (1958-1960) - Will Mitcham U2 Mk2
John Surtees Trophy Formula Junior (1958-1960) - Andrew Hibberd Lola Mk2
Denny Hulme Trophy Formula Junior (1961-1963) Sam Wilson Lotus 20/22.
Jochen Rindt Trophy Formula Junior (1961-1963) Sam Wilson Lotus 20/22
RAC TT Pre ’63 GT Martin Hunt/Patrick Blakeney-Edwards AC Cobra
Stirling Moss Trophy race for Pre ’61 Sports cars - Chris Ward Lister Knobbly
FIA Masters Historic Formula One - Nick Padmore Williams FW07C won both
HSCC Road Sports 1947-1979. John Davison Lotus Elan S1.
Adrian Flux Trophy for Pre ’66 Grand Prix cars - William Nuthall Cooper T53
Adrian Flux Trophy for Pre ’66 Grand Prix cars - Peter Horsman Lotus 18/21
Jet Super Touring Car Trophy - James Dodd Honda Accord won both.
International Trophy for Classic GT cars Pre ’66, Jake Hill Lotus Elan.
Yokohama Trophy FIA Masters Historic Sports Cars. Oliver Bryant Lola T70 Mk3B
Masters Endurance Legends - Steve Tandy Lola B12/60 won both.
RAC Woodcote Trophy Pre 56 Sports cars - Gary Pearson Jaguar D Type.
The Gallet Trophy for U2TC - Andy Wolfe/Rob Huff Ford Lotus Cortina.
Historic Touring Car Challenge, Nick and Harry Whale BMW M3 E30.
Transatlantic Trophy for Pre ’66 Touring Cars. Mike Gardiner/Andy Wolfe Ford Falcon Sprint.
Over the weekend, there were various demonstration runs by Modern Formula One legends and Motorcycle racing Legends. The Formula One cars do not have a series to race in at the moment and included Lotus, Toleman and Dallara.
Using part of the old Grand Prix circuit, there were daily stunt car displays and Street Car Shoot out drag races. In the centre of the circuit, the Village Green, located under the giant big ferris wheel, housed all kinds of trade stalls, various displays, Mike Brewer’s Car Clinic, The British Motor Museum stand had a 1908 Austin Grand Prix car plus other vehicles, there was a World War 2 Spitfire and a funfair