BARC set to kick off 2021 season at Oulton Park

After months of excitement and anticipation, the British Automobile Racing Club is set to lift the curtain on its 2021 season this coming Saturday (April 17) with what will undoubtedly be a blockbuster race day at Oulton Park.

Organised and run by the Club’s North West Centre, the one-day meeting at the Cheshire venue will mark the start of a busy year for the BARC, with events scheduled to run all the way through until the middle of November.

The CNC Heads Sports/Saloon Car Championship, the North West Centre’s flagship category, boasts a healthy grid for the new campaign where variety is very much the spice of life. Playing host to a number of different machines, the multi-class category has proven a smash-hit down the years and 2021 looks to be no different.

Notable names to keep an eye across both races include reigning champion Jamie Cryer, Danny Bird, Paul Rose, Paul Woolfitt and Guy Carter, amongst many others.

Despite not crowning any champions last year, the Caterham Graduates Championship proved to be one of the star attractions in 2020 and the much-loved single-make category is aiming to pick up where it left off at Oulton Park.

Like the CNC Heads, the Caterham contingent has an ultra-competitive grid primed for action and with the class structure condensed down to just three – Sigma 135, Sigma 150 and Sigmax – edge-of-the-seat entertainment is all-but guaranteed.

Robin Webb, Adam Harrison, Jamie Ellwood, Jonathan Curry, Oliver Gibson, Harry Senior and Ben Winrow are just some of the drivers that will undoubtedly be in the mix for the top step of the podium.

After breaking new ground in 2020, BARC Red returns for its sophomore season. Open to competitors who drive open/closed roof Sports & Saloon cars, regardless of what championship or racing club they compete in and providing they met current Motorsport UK safety regulations, the series of races garnered plenty of attention from the outset last year and duly delivered.

Now back for a second year, BARC Red looks set to grow in stature with a variety of cars set to battle it out for overall honours around the challenging 2.26-mile layout. 

Rounding out the days action will be a number of races from the full-throttle British Superkart Racing Club. Renowned for producing jaw-dropping wheel-to-wheel entertainment whilst sitting mere millimetres from the tarmac, the Superkarts will be keen to kick off the new campaign in fine style.

Saturday’s race meeting will include the national minute of silence in honour of His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. 

To find out more information on this Saturday’s Oulton Park curtain-raiser – including links to live timing, timetable and final instructions – click here.

Please note that this event is being run in accordance with government guidelines and will therefore take place behind closed doors, without spectators being permitted.

Chloe Grant crowned 2021 Junior Saloon Car Championship Scholarship winner

Chloe Grant has been crowned this year’s winner of the Junior Saloon Car Championship Scholarship, winning a fully-funded season in the popular one-make category for 2021.

In what proved to be a closely fought competition from start-to-finish at the Stafford Driving Centre, Grant beat no less than 24 other aspiring teenagers to win the career-starting prize worth more than £30,000.

Over the course of the day, the 2020 Junior Rotax Rowrah Club Champion emerged as one of the leading lights from the series of fitness, media and driving tests that were put on by the championship – eventually being selected as the victor by organisers.

Following in the footsteps of former Scholarship winners Scott McIntyre, Harry Rice and Deagan Fairclough, the British Women Racing Drivers Club Gold Medal recipient will now embark on her first full season of car racing having showcased plenty of talent in karting.

Grant will take her place on the grid for the opening rounds of the 2021 Junior Saloon Car Championship on the weekend of April 24/25 at Cadwell Park.

Classic Touring Car Racing Club set to field biggest grid in 45-year history

The Classic Touring Car Racing Club is set to field the biggest grid in its illustrious 45-year history when it kicks off its 2021 season at Silverstone on April 24/25.

Following on from a memorable 2020 campaign, the category has continued to grow in stature over the off-season and is now set for a year to remember.

Boasting a bumper online live TV schedule and introducing prize money for the top three in each championship, no less than 60 new members have registered with the CTCRC across its variety of championships.

One of the biggest classes to take to the track this year will be in Pre ‘66, which is home to iconic machines such as Morris Minor’s and Austin A40’s. Heading to the Home of British Motor Racing for the annual curtain-raiser, a total of 38 cars are set to battle for supremacy – with even more expected to be confirmed in due course as well.

Elsewhere, the Pre ‘03 grid has seen numbers swell from just five entries in 2020 to more than 20 registered competitors this year, all of which will be going wheel-to-wheel in the most modern machinery that competes under the CTCRC banner.

One new addition to the club this year is the Jaguar Enthusiasts Club, which showcases a wide range of cars all the way from the late 1960’s up until the early millennium.

With a total of seven race meetings and 14 races scheduled to play out at venues across the length and breadth of the UK, 2021 is shaping up to be one of the biggest and best years in the Classic Touring Car Racing Club.

To find out more information on the Classic Touring Car Racing Club, head to https://classictouringcars.com.

Britcar Endurance excitement ramps up ahead of new season

The 2021 Britcar season will not just be a good year – in deference to our newly-rebadged major partner Goodyear – but a great year, with capacity grids for both our Britcar Endurance and Britcar Trophy Championships.

The successful Praga marque get their own discrete championship this year, run within the Britcar Endurance races, and reigning co-champion Jem Hepworth is likely to return, as are ex-servicemen Martin Compton and Warren McKinlay, while a healthy mix of established drivers and novices, interspersed with a number of high-profile driver coaches andguesting celebrities from the sporting and high-achievement world will ensure some great racing from these stunning machines.

Danny Harrison, reigning co-champion with Hepworth, moves to a beefy Nissan GT3, and will be a major contender for the Endurance title again, partnering Richard Wheeler, head of long-time sponsor Fox Transport, though Will Powell has signaledtitle aspirations in the Motus One McLaren 650S he will share with Dave Scaramanga, and for race wins, veteran campaigner John Seale, assisted by Jamie Stanley in a Lamborghini Huracan, cannot be discounted.

A good string of results from a car in the classes below could bag the crown, however, and in Classes 2 and 3 we will see representation from Ferrari, Porsche, BMW and Ginetta. Mike Moss’s BMW 1M has overall race-winning credentials, and last season’s Class 3 champions, Marcus Fothergill and Dave Benett, will be up against stiffer competition in their Porsche 991 now that the class system has been re-jigged. That stiffer competition will no doubt include the Digiplat and CRH BMWs, further Porsches from SG Racing, Valluga and Team Hard, and an FF Corse Ferrari 458 Challenge.

Class 4 now caters exclusively for GT4 and TCR machines, with last year’s title-winning Reflex Racing Ligier JS2-R returning, as is, with renewed vigor, the Newbarn Racing Jaguar F-Type, while the Woodman/Byford SEAT Cupra will be taking the fight to the RWD cars, which will feature Peter Erceg’s Cayman and the Team Brit Aston Martin Vantage.

The Britcar Trophy Championship has enjoyed enormous pre-season interest, with record registrations ensuring full grids for all rounds in this coming season, including a shed-load of new faces. Multiple entries from J W Bird and their VW Sciroccos, and the BMWs of Simon Green Motorsport in Class T1 will be up against some specially-constructed BMWs – the Team BRIT M240, and Simon Baker’s 1-series Coupe, built by Woodrow Motorsport, who claim to have a potential class winner.Potential, maybe, though with a number of returnees – the Smith/Campbell Peugeot, the MacG Racing Mazda RX8, Rob Baker’s Smart 4/4, and the infamous “Kester Fiesta”, they will have their work cut out.  Class T2 is no less competitive either; the “two Amigos” Richard Bernard and Anthony Hutchins are joined in the Porsche Boxster brigade by old hands Leigh Smart/Kevin Hancock, while the Ginetta G40 contingent will be led by returnees Peter Spano/Andrew Bentley and Charlotte Birch/Adriano Medeiros, and Saxon Motorsport return with a brace of SEATs, plus the Woodard Mini too. Class T4 features an eclectic mix of Alfa, Honda, Mazda, and the diminutive Ginetta G20, with father and son duo Steve and Edward Cook looking to repeat their 2020 class success in their Civic, against Team BRIT’s Luke Pound and Paralympian Nerys Pearce’s BMW 118, while the standalone Clio class sees multiple support once again from the prolific Westbourne Motors stable, and a concerted effort to succeed from Darren Geeraerts, now under the auspices of Anton Spires.

In the face of COVID adversity, the Britcar championships have never looked healthier as they enter their sixth season under the current management. The opening rounds will be onSilverstone’s International circuit on April 24th/25th.

WORDS: Steve Wood

Junior Saloon Car Championship stars on Top Gear

The Junior Saloon Car Championship took on a starring role in the latest episode of Top Gear this past Sunday (April 4) as a number of drivers went head-to-head with presenters Paddy McGuiness, Freddie Flintoff and Chris Harris.

Bringing Series 30 of the hit television show to a close on BBC1, past and present drivers from the popular one-make category showcased what they and the championship is all about as they went wheel-to-wheel with the presenting trio at Castle Combe.

Tasked with selecting a ‘second-hand, mid-life crisis/opportunity car’ for £8,000 before embarking on a number of different challenges, Freddie, Chris and Paddy diced with the next generation of motorsport stars in varying vehicles.

Freddie’s choice saw him get behind the wheel of a TVR Chimaera whilst Chris opted for a Vauxhall Monaro. Paddy meanwhile chose a distinctive Ferrari F355/Toyota MR2 kit car.

Heading to the Wiltshire venue for their challenge, each presenter would complete a handful of laps around the 1.85-mile circuit with the aim of being overtaken by the least amount of JSCC competitors.

Whilst we won’t give any spoilers away, former two-time champion Lewis Saunders, Harry Rice, Alex Solley, Charlie Hand, Olivia Martin, Ben Kasperczak, Matthew Cripps and James Black were just some of the drivers that raced Freddie, Chris and Paddy.

Speaking on the experience of being part of Too Gear, Saunders said: “I was really excited about the day and that it was a once in a lifetime opportunity that will never come round again. I was proud to be representing the JSCC.”

Former Scholarship winner Rice added: “It was a very enjoyable experience being part of the filming process, seeing everything behind the scenes and how they organise such a high class show. But, the most enjoyable part was when we got to race the presenters and show them what young drivers can do.”

Black concluded: “Filming with Top Gear was such a surreal experience! After watching it on TV for so many years it was great to be a part of the show and it gave great exposure to JSCC and all the young, upcoming drivers in the UK.”

To watch the episode on demand, head to https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000ty91/top-gear-series-30-episode-4.

C1 Racing Club partners with Silverlake Automotive Recycling for 2021 season

The C1 Racing Club have confirmed that it has partnered with Silverlake Automotive Recycling for 2021, becoming headline sponsors of the Silverlake C1 Racing Series.

Part of the sponsorship agreement will see club members supported with the provision of quality-graded and cost effective recycled car parts, sourced from end of life Citroen C1s via engineers at the company’s 10-acre vehicle recycling and authorised treatment facility in Southampton.

In addition, Silverlake engineers will also be on hand to share their expertise and insights with competitors on a dedicated social media page.

Silverlake is no stranger to the popular one-make series having fielding two cars over the past two seasons, and in 2021 it will expand its line-up to include a third entrant.

Allen Prebble, Silverlake Automotive Recycling Managing Director, said: “We are extremely proud to be supporting the C1 Racing Club which makes motor racing affordable and accessible, creating so much enjoyment and a true sense of community for all its members and their families and friends who follow the events.  At Silverlake, we too give people choice and affordability when it comes to vehicle maintenance and repair. 

“By providing access to quality graded, recycled automotive parts we enable people to cost effectively maintain and repair their vehicles, keeping them running safely on the roads. We saw a natural fit between the Club values and those of our company, and having been members for the last two years we jumped at the opportunity to become headline sponsor for the 2021 race series. We can’t wait for the 2021 Silverlake C1 Racing Series to commence.” 

Robin Welsh, newly appointed to lead the C1 Racing Club moving forward, added: “I’ve actually been using Silverlake since I was a nine year old searching for parts for my autocross Mini, and they have been a valuable resource to me and my business activities for many years. It’s a great feeling to be able to further develop this relationship with Silverlake for the C1 Racing Club.”

Members of the C1 Racing Club will be able to purchase branded racewear on the series’ official website in due course.

The 2021 Silverlake C1 Racing Series is scheduled roar into life around Silverstone’s Grand Prix circuit on May 28/29/30 with its coveted 24-hour race.

Revised dates confirmed for expanded BARC live stream schedule

With the countdown to the start of the 2021 season in full swing, the British Automobile Racing Club can confirm its bumper live stream schedule for the forthcoming campaign.

Due to recent changes to a number of events in light of the governments easing of lockdown restrictions, no less than 18 race meetings will be streamed over the course of the year – bringing the full-throttle action from our championships to the heart of spectators homes.

As previously confirmed, all events will be broadcast live on the Club’s official Facebook page and YouTube channel, complete with commentary, graphics and full production values.

In addition, a BARC highlights show titled ‘Full Throttle’ will air on FreeSports, the only free-to-air sports channel in the UK. In what will be a first for UK club motor racing, the channel is aiming to broadcast live footage from a number of events over the course of the season, as their programming schedule permits.

BARC 2021 Live Stream Schedule

April 24/25 – Silverstone National

May 8/9 – Snetterton

May 31 – Donington Park

June 5/6 – Brands Hatch

June 12 – Oulton Park

June 19/20 – Pembrey

July 3/4 – Silverstone Grand Prix

July 3/4 – Thruxton

July 31/August 1 – Brands Hatch

August 21/22 – Donington Park

August 21/22 – Silverstone

August 27/28/29 – Snetterton

August 30 – Cadwell Park

September 18/19 – Snetterton

October 9/10 – Pembrey

October 17 – Mallory Park

October 23/24 – Donington Park

November 6/7 – Brands Hatch

November 13/14 – Brands Hatch

Note: All dates are provisional and subject to change in accordance with the latest government advice and restrictions regarding COVID-19.

Viewers can watch FreeSports on Freeview/BT/TalkTalk channel 64, Sky channel 422 and Virgin Media channel 553.

Subscribe to the British Automobile Racing Club’s official YouTube channel HERE.

British Truck Racing Championship event at Pembrey rescheduled for June

The first round of the British Truck Racing Championship, scheduled to take place at Pembrey Circuit in May, has been pushed back to the later date of June 19/20.

As the Welsh Government has yet to give any indication of when events may be able to restart, this decision has been taken to allow maximum opportunity for the championship to enjoy a full complement of race meetings this year.

However, it is considered highly unlikely that spectators will be allowed to attend, even on this new date. As a result, the decision has reluctantly been taken to postpone the planned truck show, Convoy Cymru, until 2022.

This exciting new truck festival has already gathered huge support this year. The stunt arena, static displays, demonstrations and a truck driving experience will be among the activities that will now have to be enjoyed next year.

Ben Taylor, BARC Chief Executive: “This has been a difficult decision to take, but it seems sensible to make the call at this point so that we can reschedule the race meeting for June. We are gutted to have to push Convoy Cymru back to next year after the amazing response it has generated, but the story is the same for all the major events across Wales this year. It will be spectacular next year.”

Alongside the British Truck Racing Championship, the 2CV Parts.com Classic Racing Championship, Kumho BMW Championship and Welsh Sports/Saloon Car Championship are all scheduled to race on the new race date in June.

Customers that have already bought entry tickets for this event will receive a full refund in due course. We appreciate the inconvenience and disruption that this will cause to existing plans, but we are grateful for everyone’s understanding at this challenging time.

Thruxton to host Müller 2021 Wheelchair Marathon

British Athletics have confirmed that Thruxton Circuit will play host to the Müller 2021 Wheelchair Marathon on Sunday 28th March.

Due to the limited amount of competition opportunities for wheelchair marathon athletes over the past year and upcoming months, this event at the fastest circuit in the UK is set to serve as a key preparation for a number of athletes based around the country.

With entries for the World Para Athletes approved event by invitation only, the competition opportunity at the Hampshire venue will see some athletes race shorter distances than the scheduled 26.2-miles.

Entries for the marathon so far include Paralympic medallist Shelly Woods, who will be targeting a third Games later this summer. Elsewhere, the men’s entry list includes 2018 Commonwealth Games silver medallist JohnBoy Smith and bronze medallist Simon Lawson.

Paula Dunn, British Athletics Para Head Coach, said: “This is a great competition opportunity for several of our wheelchair racers who have had limited chances to race over the last year or so. A lot of hard work has gone into finding a suitable COVID-19 secure venue to host this event, so thanks to all the stakeholders involved who have made this possible.”

Ben Taylor, BARC Chief Executive, added: “We are thrilled to be able to host this prestigious event for UK Athletics and it will be a first for the UK’s fastest circuit. The event reflects the efforts we have made to ensure that Thruxton is COVID-secure for a variety of purposes and, like many venues, our facilities have sat empty for far too long. It will be great to have competitive sport back on our track; it’s just a shame that we can’t have the spectators back too.”

Races are scheduled to get underway from midday. Please note, this event isn’t open to the public.

Citroen named as title sponsors of 2CV 24-hour race at Snetterton

The 2CV Parts.com Classic Racing Championship have confirmed that Citroen have been named as title sponsors for the 31st running of its annual 24-hour race at Snetterton.

Billed as one of the biggest events on the UK national motorsport calendar every year, the 2CV 24-hour race sees competitors from all over Europe descend on the Norfolk venue for a race meeting that is renowned for producing blockbuster entertainment from start-to-finish.

Replacing Liqui Moly as title sponsors of the coveted season finale, Citroen’s presence at the event will see it stretch to a ‘Citroen Classics Gathering’ that will take place on the infield of the circuit.

Organised by Classic 2CV Racing Club in partnership with Citroen UK, 2CVGB, Citroen Car Club, Club Peugeot and others, the gathering is set to be one of the biggest of Citroen machinery with classic and contemporary cars welcomed.

For those that are interested in being part of the gathering and wanting further information, contact gathering@2CVracing.org.uk.

The 2CV Parts.com Classic Racing Championship kicks off its 2021 season at Cadwell Park on April 24/25.

New venue and date for JSCC Scholarship

The Junior Saloon Car Championship has confirmed that its 2021 Scholarship will now take place at Pembrey Circuit on Tuesday 13th April.

Originally scheduled to take place at Croft Circuit on Monday 5th April, the home of Welsh motorsport will play host to the competition that will see one aspiring racer win a fully-funded season in the 2021 Junior Saloon Car Championship, amongst other prizes, for the very first time.

In what is undoubtedly the opportunity of a lifetime for one lucky youngster, the ever-growing list of Scholarship participants are set to be in for a challenging day made up of a variety of tests.

Over the course of the day, drivers will face the media, partake in a fitness test and then showcase their attributes behind the wheel on-track. A judging panel made up of championship’s organisers and partners will then whittle down the competition before selecting a winner.

Previous winners of the coveted accolade include 2019 overall champion Scott McIntyre, Harry Rice and last year’s victor Deagan Fairclough.

To find out more information on the Junior Saloon Car Championship, it’s Scholarship programme and the full list of prizes on offer, head to https://www.juniorsaloons.co.uk/.

Legends Cars entry list surpasses 30 cars as preparations ramp up for new season

The Legends Cars National Championship with MRF Tyres is preparing for one of the biggest seasons in its illustrious history this year after confirming that the entry list for the forthcoming campaign has already surpassed 30 cars.

Despite there being little over a month until the 2021 season-opener at Cadwell Park, the much-loved series has a total of 31 registered competitors – and more are possibly on the horizon.

With reigning champion Daniel Clark having already announced that he will return to defend his crown, fellow former champions Miles Rudman and John Mickel are two drivers that will undoubtedly be in the mix for the title whilst regular front-runner Jack Parker is also back as he bids for supremacy.

Robin Fountain, Paul Simmons, Connor Hughes, Neil Shenton and Chris Needham are just a handful of the other drivers to be named in the latest batch of entrants by the championship.

Phil Cooper, Legends Cars National Championship with MRF Tyres owner, said: “We really are absolutely delighted to have passed 30 registered drivers for the new season, and with five weeks still to go until the opening rounds at Cadwell Park that number could yet increase further.

“While the likes of Jack Parker, John Mickel, Paul Simmons and Robin Fountain bring fantastic experience, relative Legends newcomers like Connor Hughes and Chris Dewey bring some fresh impetus once again this year. I genuinely think this year’s grid is going to be one of the absolute best we’ve ever enjoyed as we head into our 27th season of Legends Cars racing in the UK.”

Cadwell Park will provide the backdrop for the categories 2021 season-opener, with a total of six races scheduled to play out around the challenging Lincolnshire venue on April 24/25.