Friday, 29 April 2016


Silverstone Classic



  • Biggest Media Day yet promises quantity and quality at summer spectacular
  • Bikes and sidecars join cars on action-packed family-friendly bill
  • Freddie Hunt celebrates father James’ F1 title triumph in McLaren M23
  • 1966 World Cup celebrations remembered in car football match

A host of the famous stars and evocative cars that will wow the crowds at this summer’s action-packed Silverstone Classic (29-31 July) revved up at today’s traditional Media Day curtain-raiser.
As the premier event on the historic motor racing calendar, the Silverstone Classic is firmly established as the world’s biggest classic motor racing festival, with last year’s record-breaking silver jubilee extravaganza attracting more than 100,000 visitors for the very first time.
Judging by the attendance and fever around Media Day, 2016’s follow-up is gearing up to be even bigger and better, with the Home of British Motor Sport primed to host the ultimate celebration of classic cars.
With the variety of on-track action matched by a plethora of off-track entertainment, the sheer scale of the event is astonishing – and it is continuing to grow year-on-year, as the vast Silverstone estate is given over to a full-on festival of flat-out fun for all the family.
Some 150 of the world’s finest cars took to the Grand Prix track, while static displays in the paddock highlighted many of the car club anniversaries – with lots of models and marques set to celebrate momentous milestones this summer, including the 50th birthday of the iconic Lamborghini Miura and 25 years of the charismatic Nissan Figaro.
Freddie Hunt was one of the undisputed star attractions, as the 2016 Silverstone Classic prepares to mark the 40th anniversary of his father James Hunt’s Formula 1 World Championship crown. Freddie got behind the wheel of his father’s 1976 title-winning McLaren-Ford M23, and was interviewed by commentating legend Murray Walker for a forthcoming feature on Channel 4’s F1 programme. He was joined by Alastair Caldwell – McLaren Team Manager at the time – who regaled a captivated audience with little-known tales from the 1976 campaign.
Other big names to lend their support were actor and renowned car fanatic Philip Glenister and his co-presenter Ant Anstead from TV’s For The Love Of Cars, Nic Hamilton – brother of World Champion Lewis – and former England international footballer Luther Blissett, who is an ambassador for new event charity partner Prostate Cancer UK.
Touring car heroes Steve Soper, Jeff Allam and Patrick Watts were similarly in attendance, and they will all be appearing on-track as part of the inaugural ‘Tin-Top Sunday’ in July.
For the first time at the Silverstone Classic, there will be four separate touring car grids – the JET Super Touring Car Trophy (1990-2000), Historic Touring Car Challenge (1967-1989), Big-Engined Touring Cars (Pre ’66) and Under 2-Litre Touring Cars (Pre ’66) – bringing together more than 200 of the nation’s best-loved cars.
In another exciting innovation, in addition to the ever-popular Group C twilight race, FIA Masters Historic Formula One, Legends of Modern Formula One and Stirling Moss Trophy amongst many others, the new Can-Am 50 Interserie Challenge will stage its season finale at the Classic. These extreme machines will provide an awesome soundtrack to the event as they celebrate their 50thanniversary in 2016.
Extending the event’s appeal to two- and three-wheeled fans as well as car connoisseurs, this summer’s Classic will also welcome to the bill World GP Bike Legends – off the back of a successful debut at Jerez in Spain last year – and the Sidecar Salute, with 1987 500cc World Champion Wayne Gardner and ten-time ten FIM Sidecar World Champion Steve Webster both in attendance at Media Day.
Away from the racetrack, the impressive infield display will include live music concerts from chart-toppers The Boomtown Rats, The Stranglers and Reef, more than 120 car clubs exhibiting classic models from through the decades, Silverstone Auctions, aviation displays, a live Range Rover restoration with new event partner eBay and – for the first time – a Concours d’Elegance.
In a special feature to commemorate England‘s victory over Germany in the 1966 Football World Cup Final, meanwhile, a car football match with the Classic’s official courtesy car partner SsangYong UK will be held exactly 50 years to the day on Saturday, 30 July.
“Thanks to a tireless effort by the entire organising team, the Silverstone Classic has become a world-class event,” commented Nick Wigley, CEO of organisers, Goose Live Events. “Everybody works all year round to ensure that what we offer remains the biggest and best historic racing you will see anywhere in the world.
“I’m incredibly excited about the addition of the Can-Am celebration this year – the sound will be absolutely immense – as well as the introduction of Tin-Top Sunday. I think deep down, we’ve all got a soft spot for touring cars because they’re the kinds of cars our dads used to drive.
“Not only that, but having always wanted to include some two and three-wheeled action, I’m delighted that we have secured some absolute sporting icons with the World GP Bike Legends and Sidecar Salute.
“The Silverstone Classic has become the unmissable event for all of Britain’s car clubs, and this year there will be some 10,000 beautifully polished classic cars on display for visitors to come and admire over the weekend.
“Ticket sales for the 2016 event are really strong, and at such fabulous value for money, our new family weekend ticket has proven to be immensely popular. All the ingredients are in-place for yet another record-breaking Silverstone Classic!”
All tickets for the 2016 Silverstone Classic must be purchased in advance.  Adult admission starts at just £42 and sticks to the Classic’s widely-praised ‘access all areas’ policy, thus providing admission to both National and Wing race paddocks, trackside grandstands, the vintage funfair, air displays and the live music concerts which this year include chart-toppers The Boomtown Rats, Reef and The Stranglers.
Full details of all tickets – as well as hospitality packages, special family offers and weekend festival camping – can be found on the event’s official website:

Image Captions: 
Above: The 2016 Silverstone Classic revved into life at a busy Media Day today
Below top row: Freddie Hunt previewed a celebration of his father James' 1976 Formula 1 World Championship success, accompanied by commentating legend Murray Walker
Below second left: The 2016 Classic will host the greatest collection of touring cars to-date
Below second right: A packed press conference underscored the event's sky-high popularity
Below third left: Official courtesy car partner SsangYong UK will support a car football match to commemorate England's 1966 World Cup success
Below third right: Actor and car fan Philip Glenister (right) was an enthusiastic attendee, pictured here with co-presenter Ant Anstead
Below fourth left: The Lamborghini Miura celebrates its 50th birthday at the 2016 Classic
Below fourth right: The Classic marks 25 years of the charismatic Nissan Figaro 
Below bottom: Multiple Sidecar World Champion Steve Webster and 1987 500cc World Champion Wayne Gardner herald a couple of new additions at the 2016 Classic


Silverstone Classic


• Special 40th anniversary celebrations of the flamboyant Englishman’s title-winning season   
• Freddie Hunt drives 1976 championship winning McLaren M23 
• Iconic circuit witnessed three of Hunt’s most famous F1 victories 

The headline-grabbing career of one of Britain’s most charismatic and colourful sportsmen will be celebrated at this summer’s Silverstone Classic (29-31 July). It’s exactly 40 years since hard driving, fast living James Hunt overcame all the odds to win the FIA Formula One World Championship in 1976 – a dramatic feat recently acclaimed in the award-winning movie Rush.
Hunt sadly passed away in 1993 at the age of just 45 but the legend lives on and the ruby 40th anniversary of his crowning achievement will be marked at the world’s biggest historic motor racing festival in July, with special displays curated by his two sons Freddie and Tom. These displays will include a number of James’ most notable road and racing cars plus rarely seen trophies and memorabilia from the flamboyant Englishman’s title winning 1976 season.
The special celebrations at Silverstone are very appropriate, too, as Hunt savoured more Formula One success at the superfast Northamptonshire venue than at any other circuit worldwide. As a much-loved underdog, home hero Hunt scored a hugely popular maiden F1 win at Silverstone in April 1974 when racing for the locally based Hesketh team. Although the BRDC International Trophy was non-championship, the grid featured many of the era’s top teams and drivers.
Two years later, Hunt ignited his title winning campaign with a second confidence boosting International Trophy victory, this time for his new team McLaren. And it was at Silverstone that, as reigning champion, he won his only British Grand Prix after an epic dice with John Watson in 1977.
“I know the crowds at Silverstone back in the seventies really took my dad’s heroics to their hearts, so it’s going to be very special for all of us in the family to be marking the 40th anniversary of his World Championship at this summer’s Silverstone Classic,” enthused Freddie Hunt who drove one of his father’s title winning McLaren M23s during today’s Silverstone Classic Media Preview curtain-raiser at the legendary Grand Prix circuit.
“I’ve seen so many photos and films of my father racing the M23 that it really was emotional to get behind the wheel and experience just a smidgeon of what it must have been like to race these fantastic F1 cars in period. It really was a remarkable era and one which the Classic always celebrates in style.”

Indeed, the McLaren M23 and its successor the M26 which Hunt raced to British Grand Prix victory in 1977, will feature in the two rounds of the FIA Masters Historic Formula One Championship – among the many highlights on the action-packed Silverstone Classic schedule. Freddie, himself, is also planning to race a giant-killing Mini in the showdown for Big Engine Touring Cars from the early sixties.
“It’s a tremendous privilege to have Freddie and the Hunt family so involved in this year’s Classic, 40 years after James famously took the title in 1976,” said Nick Wigley CEO of event organiser Goose Live Events. “Knowing just how special James was to the fans at Silverstone, we invited Freddie to last year’s event and have been making plans to celebrate this important anniversary ever since.”    
Fans wanting to be part of these special celebrations must buy their tickets in advance. Adult prices start from £42 and full details of all tickets – as well as hospitality packages and weekend festival camping – can be found on the event website at:

Images: Freddie Hunt (above and below top and middle) previewed a special James Hunt celebration at this summer's Silverstone Classic, on the 40th anniversary of his father's Formula 1 World Championship title. James Hunt is pictured below bottom celebrating his maiden F1 success in the International Trophy at Silverstone in 1974 (left) and en route to victory in the 1977 British Grand Prix (right).
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Silverstone Classic



• eBay announced as official parts and accessories partner  
• Show-goers to witness 4x4 classic being restored to its former glory  
The organisers of the record-breaking Silverstone Classic (29-31 July) are delighted to announce eBay, the global online marketplace, will be joining the event, for the first time, as the official parts and accessories partner.
It is a significant collaboration that will add yet another crowd-pleasing component to this summer’s staging of the world’s biggest historic motor racing festival. Demonstrating that eBay is the premier destination for car parts show-goers will be able to follow the live restoration of a 1982 classic Range Rover over the three-day event.
Hosted by eBay, RESTORATION LIVE with Fergus Walkinshaw is sure to be a hugely popular attraction for the tens of thousands of show-goers, many of whom will be travelling to Silverstone in their own lovingly restored classics.
Walkinshaw and his team will guide the crowd through every step of the project as they renovate the iconic first-generation Range Rover using only items bought from eBay. Whether it’s a new replacement body panel or an original piece of internal trim, finding the right pieces shouldn’t prove too tricky as there are more than eight million live listings of car parts and accessories on to buy at any time. Indeed, eBay is home to one of the largest collections of motoring products in the world and, thus, the ideal destination for everything from replacement parts for the family car to the final rare piece in a classic restoration puzzle.
Murray Lambell, eBay’s director of retail car parts and accessories, said: “We love the Silverstone Classic. It attracts everyone from the highly experienced restorer right through to people who simply just love their car – just like eBay does – so it’s a great event for us to be part of. 
“With such a huge selection of products Fergus and the team will easily find everything they need when they restore the Range Rover. eBay can help with everything from an everyday replacement part – to a rare component in a classic restoration.”
As for the Range Rover, once it is restored to its former glory, it will appear on stage during the Mike Brewer Car Clinic on Sunday at the Classic, with Mike and Fergus answering questions and sharing their experience of the complex project.
“We are understandably enthused to be partnering a company of eBay’s global esteem and importance,” said Nick Wigley, CEO of Silverstone Classic organiser Goose Live Events. “All the more so as eBay will be helping us to add yet another fascinating new dimension to this summer’s festival. A large number of our visitors are no strangers to restoration projects, and I’m sure they will really enjoy seeing a 34-year-old Range Rover being restored to its original grandeur.”
All tickets for the 2016 Silverstone Classic must be purchased in advance.  Adult admission starts at just £42 and sticks to the Classic’s widely-praised ‘access all areas’ policy, thus providing admission to both National and Wing race paddocks, trackside grandstands, the vintage funfair, air displays and the live music concerts which this year include chart-toppers The Boomtown Rats, Reef and The Stranglers.
Full details of all tickets – as well as hospitality packages, special family offers and weekend festival camping – can be found on the event’s official website:

Images: In partnership with global online marketplace eBay, Fergus Walkinshaw and his team will lead the live restoration of a 1982 Range Rover at this summer's Silverstone Classic.


Silverstone Classic


The Silverstone Classic is proud to announce that Prostate Cancer UK has been appointed as its Official Charity Partner for the next three years.
The announcement was made today (Wednesday) at the special Media Preview which launched this summer’s edition of the world’s biggest classic motor racing festival, taking place at Britain’s premier race circuit over the weekend of 29-31 July.
This is the first time the Silverstone Classic has aligned itself with a charity and a number of organisations presented strong submissions to be part of this world class event that attracted more than 100,000 visitors in 2015.
“I would like to thank all of those who put forward applications - it was far from an easy decision to make,” admitted Nick Wigley CEO of event organiser Goose Live Events. “After much deliberation, I must say we are delighted to partner with Prostate Cancer UK. The charity already has close contacts with many of the car clubs involved in the Classic and, more significantly, our visitor profile is very relevant to the vital work the charity undertakes.” 
Currently one man an hour dies from prostate cancer in the UK. That’s 10,900 men a year. Based on current trends, if we ignore prostate cancer and do nothing, this number will rise to over 14,500 men a year by 2026. And by 2030 it’s predicted to be the most common cancer overall.
The aim of this new partnership is to raise both awareness of the disease and funds in order to help the charity provide vital support and information to men and their families, and find answers by funding research into causes and treatments.
Nick O’Donohue of Prostate Cancer UK said: “We’re really excited to be teaming up with the Silverstone Classic. This partnership offers the perfect platform to reach large numbers of car loving dads, lads and their families, whether they are revving up in the race paddocks or enjoying the packed infield displays and entertainment zones.”
“Prostate cancer won’t beat itself. It’s a race against time but we believe it can be tamed within ten years, if action is taken now.  We need to start talking if we are to stop men dying needlessly. Ignoring prostate cancer won’t beat it – only fighting it will.”
In addition to providing various opportunities for fundraising activities, the Classic will highlight the positive work that Prostate Cancer UK undertakes via the event’s official programme, website, social media platforms and presence at the festival  
As well as unrivalled grids featuring the full spectrum of motor sport history – plus more than 10,000 privately owned classic cars displayed by car club members – the Silverstone Classic offers a wealth of great family entertainment. Tickets must be purchased in advance with adult admission starting from £42.
Full details of all tickets – as well as hospitality packages and weekend festival camping – can be found on the event website at:

Images: Ex-England international footballer and Prostate Cancer UK ambassador Luther Blissett, Gordon Weston – who is currently in remission after being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2013 – and Nick O'Donohue of Prostate Cancer UK with Weston's Porsche 924S, which will be part of a special track parade at the 2016 Silverstone Classic to mark the car's 40th anniversary.