One of the highlights of the Motor Racing Legends’ annual calendar is the forthcoming Silverstone Classic (July 20-22) where a fabulous entry line-up will assemble across three over-flowing grids.
Highlights of the weekend include a stupendous entry for the Stirling Moss Trophy for sports racers built before 1961. Already this season we have witnessed a great battle between Chris Ward in the JD Classics’ Lister Jaguar Knobbly versus the agile two-litre Climax-engined Lotus 15 piloted by Oliver Bryant. The closely matched pair have won one race a piece, with Bryant finally managing to get the fragile Lotus to the flag for at Thruxton to come out on top, but it was a very close shave and highly entertaining to watch.
Winning at Silverstone Classic is a highly coveted prize, and Chris Ward triumphed here last year. He is back in the Lister Knobbly, Bryant is back driving with dad Grahame in the family Lotus 15 fresh from their win at Spa Three Hours. Other podium contenders include the capable hands of American Michael Gans driving a similar Lotus 15 and Tony Wood driving with Will Nuthall who made the podium at Donington in Wood’s Lister Knobbly.
The Royal Automobile Club Woodcote Trophy is scheduled to roar into action for the start of their 50 minute race on Sunday morning with a spectacular field of pre-56 sports cars – all of which must conform strictly to period specification. .
One driver pairing who have serious form are Fred Wakeman and Patrick Blakeney-Edwards in the former’s Cooper T38 and they could be the ones to watch in this fiercely competitive grid sponsored by EFG Private Bank. They will encounter serious competition from four Jaguar D-Types including previous race winners Gary and John Pearson. Another previous race winner is the silver Cooper Jaguar T33 piloted by Chris Ward and Derek Hood – a car we know is on form after winning outright at this year’s Grand Prix de Monaco Historique.
The Historic Touring Car Challenge is one of the feature races and part of the BTCC 60th anniversary ‘Tin Top Sunday’ at this year’s Classic honouring four decades of saloon and touring car racing.
A bumper grid of 50 cars will take to the circuit for this 40 minute race. Last time out, Ric Wood and co-driver, current Touring car ace Adam Morgan, took the overall win at Thruxton and in May, father and son duo Nick and Harry Whale proved they are on winning form after topping the podium at the Donington Historic Festival. Nick and Harry also won this race here in 2016 driving Nick’s BMW E30 M3 the car he raced in the BTCC in 89, 90 and 91. Both of these pairings start the race alongside a whole raft of serious podium contenders including three Sierra Cosworth RS500s now eligible to enter in the Invitation Class. Sprinkled on top are a selection of Touring Car stars such as Tim Harvey and Mat Jackson and you can rest assured that this will be a very exciting battle.
Nearly half the cars on this entry list are categorised in Group 1, and are competing for The Tony Dron Trophy. These cars are running to period specification, including original brakes so you will see significantly different lap times to the more modern era cars. So far this year, multiple race and rally champion Patrick Watts has taken first place at Donington in his Frank & Jeans Ford Capri and at the Thruxton 50th Anniversary event, it was the Chevrolet Camaro of Oliver Bryant who took the top step.
It is worth noting that in the entry list for the Touring Cars, the classification for both the results and entry list will feature a ‘V’ against those cars for which an Engine Capacity Certificate has been submitted and approved. Only these cars will be eligible for Class Awards.
All the action will start on Friday 20th July with qualifying sessions for all races.