The Classic Car Show 2014 was one of those events that has always been marked in the diary but I’ve never got up to see. Held at the NEC in Birmingham and with Wheeler Dealers – Mike Brewer and Ed China being ambassadors – recent years has seen the Classic Car show ramp up it’s publicity and marketing efforts.
Adrenalin – The BMW Touring Car Story
When you think touring cars your mind automatically jumps to BMW , or mine does anyway. BMW have a rich heritage in Motorsport, especially throughout the 70’s 80’s and 90s where Touring cars were big business and naturally fitted well with the Bavarian power house’s business. Win on Sunday, sell on Monday couldn’t have been more true for that era of Motorsport, with big budgets thrown at teams to get the brand trains careering through to their customers wallets. Adrenalin The BMW Touring Car Story is a film that takes an in depth look at BMW’s involvement and what it meant/means to be a touring car driver for Bavarian Motor Werks.
Rubbing and hustling for position is what makes this type of racing exhilarating…watching the drivers push themselves and their cars to the ultimate limit and fraying the relationships they have with each other in between is all part of the draw. The driving is a lot more aggressive than most forms of Motorsport and that’s what keeps the hoards of spectators and fans obsessed with the sport. That obsession and passion transpires down through to the drivers who live for the close quarter racing and no shits given attitude when their 3 a breast into a tight corner and they no one of them is coming off worse.
Just from the trailer for Adrenalin – The BMW Touring Car Story, the grittyness that Touring Cars offers is apparent, from the classic footage to the modern day it’s captured the essence of wheel to wheel, bumper to bumper racing. I for one am excited to see this film.
Wilton Classic and Supercars
Wilton Classic and Supercars is an event that is set in the back garden of one of the UK’s old world stately homes, when I say old world I mean, old money, when extreme extravagance and opulence were your defining factor in social society. Quite fitting really for the cars on display at Wilton Classic and Supercars.Where better to start than Ferrari, the OG of extravagance and beauty. Ferrari’s are always the star of the show at any event and especially classic Ferrari’s. The line up at Wilton Classic and Supercars was vast from 250 GTO’s to F40’s and 250 California’s to Daytona’s and definitely did not disappoint
Where ever it goes the 250 GTO is a show stopper and there has been a lot of hype around these cars recently, one went on the block at Monterey Car Week fetching an eye watering bid of $38million.
Some what of an unsung hero among the other Ferrari’s and cast to one side on the lawns away from the main humdrum of onlookers. The Ferrari Daytona is the king of GT cruisers and basking the sunhine in between showers allowed me to shoot it uninterrupted and really appreciate the stunning shape and engineering of this late 70’s beast.
From the 250 GTO to the Ferrari F40, Wilton Classic and Supercars delivered the Ferrari goodness. I love these things, the boxy late 80’s wedge design, an ass as wide as Kim Kardashian’s and those scuplted air flow ducts…everything about this car is kick you in the nuts cool.
I was totally drawn in by this Amilcar, a French maker from the 1920’s. This is an example of nuts and bolts functional engineering presented beautifully. A spotless example really captured the open wheel period, I just wanted to jump on in, grab my goggles and leather cap and go for a blast.
I’ve never seen the BMW 507 in the flesh, it’s so far removed from modern BMW’s or even the Neue Klasse, that you could be forgiven for thinking it’s of Italian decent.
I think patina and battle scars give a car it’s character, it’s soul and tells a story, which I why I was all over this Porsche 911 2.7 RS. It was obvious that it had seen a few adventures but when I was snapping away a well to do couple walked up to the car and simply said “the interior isn’t much better than the outside, that’s a state” – technically yes Mr and Mrs well to do you were right but the point was well and truly missed…
This was a car I’m sure of many tales and that is the point, it was occupying the lawn to conceive intrigue to anyone that took an interest, where had this car been, who had driven it, what had it seen…all of these things I would love to know. Looking past the beaten up exterior and simply appreciating this 911 RS for what it is, an out and out automotive legend.
BBS Turbo fans and tonnes of aero give the old Le Man slayer such an aggressive look. Feared by other racers on the track and by those who graced it’s steering wheel for being an unforgiving brute, it still has an air of beauty to it despite its reputation. Despite the format having already been done on paper, Wilton Classic and Supercars just feels different. A Spectacular setting and spectacular cars.
Silverstone Classic 2014 – Historic Motorsport Icons
When you think of a British Motorsport venue your thoughts jumps straight to Silverstone in leafy Buckinghamshire – so there’s nowhere better in my opinion to hold a Classic and Vintage Motorsport event. The Silverstone Classic 2014 was a last minute deal for me, I’d heard about the event but never attended and after seeing all the Classic LeMans coverage, I was itching to get my yearly dose of Classic Motorsport.
It all came about one evening surfing the internet when suddenly the memory of a conversation with a colleague about the show popped into my head, a quick investigation later and two tickets were winging their way to me in the post. The lucky recipient of the second ticket…my very patient girlfriend, boy was she in for a treat.
With the promise of historic F1, classic LeMans and early naughties ‘money no object’ British Touring Cars – the alarm was set for 5:45am…the early bird always catches the worm and man what a worm.
The first stop on arrival (after coffee) was the International Paddock, the early start was made better (for me anyway) by what greeted us. Empty pit garages with unprecedented access to some of the most iconic race cars in the business, WIN. It had the feel of a museum before opening, to the point that my girlfriend kept asking “if we were meant to be there”, it all seemed too good to be true. The sheer openness to roam around the garages whilst last minute prep was being done by race mechanics was simply amazing. I was like a giddy fat kid in a sweet shop.
It’s not often you can get this up close to some Motorsport greats, often we as spectators are kept at arms length to the cars and drivers but not at the Silverstone Classic. Drivers, mechanics, marshalls all mixed with visitors in pure petrol head harmony…I likened the atmosphere to the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Whilst FoS is a special event in itself you’re still not able to get too close to the cars or drivers.
1000 cars competed over the weekend in over 20 frantic races, the grids were huge and provided for some non-stop trading of paint throughout the weekend. I couldn’t keep up with the wealth of cars on show and on the track but I’m not going to lie, whilst the racing was fantastic and thrilling to watch, I was more concerned about getting up close to the machines.
Because the Silverstone Classic 2014 was such a late call I didn’t have many expectations. I was literally left brain numb (in a good way) from the whole experience – the atmosphere was great, everyone I came across in the car clubs were so passionate about their cars and wow the cars…
The images here are a small sample of what was on show in and around the International Paddock set in the stunning new start finish straight pit building. I have lots more coverage from the Silverstone Classic planned, including some of the cars from the National Paddock, some of the many club cars on show as well as a selection of the best Porsche’s at the show. Stay tuned…