Nigel Mansell CBE and Murray Walker OBE to open The Thruxton Centre at 50th Anniversary Celebration

The 1992 Formula 1 World Champion Nigel Mansell and much-loved veteran F1 commentator Murray Walker will inaugurate The Thruxton Centre during the 50th Anniversary Celebration – Sat 2 – Sun 3 June. Plus, Mansell’s title-winning Williams F1 car will also be on display.

The Thruxton Centre – Thruxton Circuit’s new, £2 million state-of-the-art hospitality facility – will be officially opened at 12:00 noon on Sunday, 3 June by 31-time Grand Prix-winner and 1992 Formula 1 World Champion, Nigel Mansell CBE alongside his lifelong friend and semi-retired motorsport commentator and journalist, Murray Walker OBE.

Thruxton’s flagship hospitality building is the latest addition to the venue as part of a comprehensive modernisation programme. The fully-catered facility will comprise a new restaurant and bar, exhibition space, function rooms, hosting suites and outside viewing terrace.

Thruxton’s 50th Anniversary Celebration will take place over the weekend of 2/3 June, featuring 15 races as well as high-speed demonstrations from Williams’ 1983 FW08C and other iconic racing cars and bikes. As the stars of the eagerly-anticipated inauguration of The Thruxton Centre, Mansell and Walker will be amongst the high-profile guests, and both spoke warmly about the popular Hampshire circuit – the quickest in the country.

Mansell said: “I remember Thruxton very fondly from my early racing days, as a very fast, demanding circuit where I enjoyed several exciting and successful races.”

Walker added: “I’ve been commentating at Thruxton since the early 1950s, notably at motorcycle races, the great Formula Two events and the thrilling British Touring Car Championship. I love its friendly atmosphere and am honoured to join my mate Nigel for the opening of this superb new building.”

Mansell’s 1992 Formula 1 World Championship-winning Williams FW14B will also be on display. Penned by legendary F1 designer Adrian Newey OBE and Sir Patrick Head, the FW14B – pioneer of the sport’s game-changing active suspension technology – won ten Grands Prix, achieved 15 pole positions out of 16 and set 11 fastest laps in the hands of the Briton and team-mate Riccardo Patrese. Between them, the pair tallied no fewer than 21 podium finishes that year, with Mansell clinching the coveted Drivers’ crown as early as the Hungarian Grand Prix in August – a record at the time.

“We’re over-the-moon to be able to confirm Nigel and Murray to officially open The Thruxton Centre,” enthused Thruxton Group Managing Director, Bill Coombs. “They are both absolute motorsport royalty, not only in Britain but all around the world, and I am sure they will prove to be a huge draw at our 50th Anniversary Celebration. The new facility will truly enhance the Thruxton offering for race fans, manufacturers and corporate guests.

“For fans to also get the opportunity to see the Williams FW14B – one of the most dominant cars in the sport’s history – in the flesh will be a rare treat, and enhances the team’s presence at the event alongside the FW08C, which we announced last week. Better yet, there’s much, much more still to come – so watch this space!”

The first motorsport event to be held at Thruxton in the venue’s current guise was in March, 1968 and half-a-century on, a whole host of single-seaters, sportscars and saloons from the last five decades will hit the track for a spirited sprint down memory lane at the circuit’s 50th Anniversary Celebration.

Away from the race programme, there will be a raft of eye-catching demo runs, static displays and car club reunions, as well as a funfair, live music, overnight camping and a fireworks display in evidence of the festival’s family-friendly appeal.

Advance tickets for Thruxton’s 50th Anniversary Celebration on 2/3 June are available from just £12 for Saturday entry and £15 for Sunday – or £24 for both days. Sunday grandstand seats are an additional £5. Accompanied children aged 15 and under will be admitted free of charge.

Tio Ellinas snatches Porsche Carrera Cup GB title

Two podium finishes for Tio Ellinas was enough for him to snatch the Porsche Carrera Cup GB title at Brands Hatch this past weekend (September 29/30), overhauling season-long rival Dino Zamparelli in the process.

Entering the final event of the season sitting second in the standings, the Slidesports Engineering driver had a deficit of eight points to make up on championship leader Zamparelli around the Kent circuit.

The opening encounter of the weekend proved to be a milestone 300th for the championship since its inception in 2003, and it didn’t disappoint. Starting on the outside of the front row, Zamparelli jumped pole sitter Daniel Harper and began to make his escape from the chasing pack.

Firmly in control of proceedings, the Redline Racing driver soon found himself in strife as he spun on coolant dropped by another car, pitching him into the gravel and tumbling down the order. Managing to get going again, ZamaprellI’s hopes of the title were soon on a knife-edge.

Back at the front, Harper’s hopes of victory dropped away and Lewis Plato came to the fore, taking the lead and ultimately going on to score his second win of the season. Behind the JTR driver was Ellinas who bagged second place and with it, closed the gap to Zamparelli to zero – meaning the pair would go into the final race of the season tied on points.

With it coming down to who finished in front of the other, all eyes were on Ellinas and Zamparelli as they prepared for the final chapter of the 2018 season. As the lights went out, series returnee Michael Caine found himself in strife at Paddock Hill Bend the field streamed round the opening sequence of corners.

As Tom Wrigley vaulted into the lead, Ellinas slotted into second place – a championship-winning position at the time. Further back Zamparelli’s progress had been strong to begin with but as the race wore on, the runner-up the previous two seasons was unable to find a way past Harper.

Second place for Ellinas meanwhile proved to be enough to give him his maiden Porsche Carrera Cup GB title by just two points.

Seb Perez emerged as the victor in the Pro-Am category and Peter Manigon wrapped up the Am class.

For the full championship classification and results from all sessions, click here.

BARC heads back to Cadwell Park for full-throttle weekend

The British Automobile Racing Club heads north to the undulating curves of Cadwell Park this weekend (September 8/9) with six championships set to continue their 2018 campaigns.

In what will be the latest visit to the picturesque circuit in Lancashire, the demanding layout of Cadwell is set to produce close-quarter action across the variety of categories competing.

A spirited trip down memory lane will be in order for the Luna Logistics Classic Formula Ford 1600 Championship as they stage their penultimate event of the season. Showcasing the glory years of single seater racing, the open-wheeled series has been rife with high-octane moments throughout the year – and this weekend is set to be no different with two races set to be run.

Benn Tilley has proved to be the benchmark driver in recent rounds but the likes of Mark Armstrong, Stuart Kestenbaum and Ben Tinkler, amongst a host of others, will all be out to haunt his momentum.

The Lancaster Insurance MG Owner’s Club Championship has served up another enthralling season of racing this year and shows no sign of slowing up heading to Cadwell. With all manner of models from the marquee manufacturer being represented on the grid, the multi-class series has proven to be a haven for entertainment.

Series veteran Jim Baynam finds himself leading the way in the standings however his lead could come under further threat if the likes of Stephen McDermid and Martin Willis score big points.

There has been a fair share of memorable moments from the Max5 Racing Championship this year which has largely been dominated by Paul Roddison. Holding a near-perfect record, Roddison will be keen to continue his winning ways whilst the likes of Jeremy Shipley bid to halt his progress.

Elsewhere over the course of the weekend will be a feast of tin top action from the Classic VW Cup, BARC Saloon Series and Dream Automotive Honda VTEC Challenge.

Bringing together some of the most iconic machines from the German marque, the Classic VW Cup has flourished in its maiden season of having its own grids. A diverse range of machines will also been seen across the BARC Saloon Series and Dream Automotive Honda VTEC Challenge -each of them likely to take on a starring role.

In addition to the feast of BARC action, on-track thrills will also come from the Mini Se7en Championship and Mini Miglia Championship, both of whom starred at Thruxton’s 50th Anniversary Meeting in early June.

Fans of all things Ford will be well-catered for too as a pair of races from the Racing Fords series will also take place.

For more information on this weekend’s event at Cadwell Park, including a timetable and links to live timing, click here

‘King of Croft’ leads BTCC battle into Yorkshire

The Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship reaches the half-way point of the 2018 season this weekend (June 23/24) at Croft Circuit, with Team BMW’s Colin Turkington leading the charge as the series heads to North Yorkshire.

Marking its 60th Anniversary this year, the BTCC has once again hit new heights with the usual mix of wheel-to-wheel thrills being produced and nine different drivers picking up race wins along the way.

Celebrating 50 years since first hosting a BTCC event also, Croft has become a popular fixture on the calendar and one that is favourite amongst drivers and spectators alike.

Nobody undoubtedly has a greater love for the North Yorkshire-based venue than series leader Turkington, who enters the weekend with a 12-point advantage. Well-suited to rear-wheel-drive cars, Croft has become a happy hunting ground for the West Surrey Racing driver down the years.

Scoring 12 wins, 19 podiums, five pole positions and eight fastest laps, Turkington has earned himself the moniker of being called the ‘King of Croft’ and many expect him to be on top form once again. Winning last time out at Oulton Park, the Northern Irishman could well add to his impressive strike rate, despite carrying 75kgs of success ballast into qualifying and race one.

Hot on the heels of the BMW driver are a quartet of young guns, all of which are leading the fight against the established guard. Adam Morgan and Jack Goff sit tied on points in second place whilst two-time race winners Tom Ingram and Josh Cook are also in the mix.

Matt Neal, a winner at Thruxton, sits on the fringe of the top five and should go well in the Honda Civic Type R, as will Andrew Jordan and Rob Collard. Both sit behind the wheel of a BMW 1-Series and both will be highly confident of scoring big around a circuit which has delivered success for WSR in the past.

Tom Chilton edged closer to a taking his maiden Motorbase Performance race win at Oulton Park, bagging two podium finishes and he too will have his tail in the air.

Four of the 32 drivers on the BTCC grid are proud Yorkshiremen and each would count themselves as potential race winners heading into next weekend as they look to leave their mark in front of their home crowd.

Daniel Cammish, Sam Tordoff, Senna Proctor and Daniel Lloyd have all at some stage underlined their credentials in the BTCC and all four will be keen to sign off the first half of their campaigns with silverware in front of what is expected to be a bumper turnout of fans.

Matt Simpson scored a popular breakthrough pole position and race win in Cheshire a few weeks ago and the Type R racer will be eyeing further success too.

One team that will be looking for a change in fortunes is Adrian Flux Subaru Racing. Enduring performance issues that have hampered their chances of fighting towards the front, the trio of reigning champion Ashley Sutton, Jason Plato and Josh Price will all be hoping to take a step in the right direction at a circuit that has treated them well in recent seasons.

With rounds 13, 14 and 15 of the 2018 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship marking the half-way point of the season, expect to see everyone fighting to head into the annual summer break on a high.

Tickets will be available to purchase on the gate on Saturday and Sunday this weekend, priced at £15 for Saturday, £30 for Sunday and £38 for the full weekend. Children 15 and under go free when accompanied by an adult whilst gates open at 08:00 both days.

Thruxton Circuit geared up to celebrate 50th Anniversary in style

Thruxton Circuit is set to mark its 50th Anniversary in style this weekend (June 2/3) with two days of iconic races, mesmerising displays, jaw-dropping off track attractions and famous faces all set to feature.

The first motorsport event to be held at the home of the British Automobile Racing Club in its current guise took place in 1968 and since then, the Hampshire venue has welcomed all manner of machinery, all of them making an indelible mark.

One of the very few circuits in the UK that has remained untouched, all five decades of Thruxton will be showcased during the weekend on what is set to be a spirited trip down memory lane.

Part of that visit to yesteryear will come from the bumper 13-race programme that has been put together which encompasses a wide range of illustrious machines that have starred at the venue down the years.

Action from the Historic Touring Car Challenge/Tony Dron Trophy, Spirit of Thruxton Single-Seater Race for the Jochen Rindt Memorial Trophy, RAC Woodcote Trophy/Stirling Moss Trophy, Ian Taylor Trophy Race for HSCC Historic Formula Ford Championship, HSCC Guards Trophy, M7RC Mini Se7en Championship and M7RC Mini Miglia Championship are set to keep fans on the edge of their seats.

Away from the racing there will be a host of eye-catching demonstration runs, all of which will be out to steal the show. Formula 1 will return to Thruxton for the first time since 1993 to top the demo run billing as Karun Chandhok takes the reins of the flame-spitting Williams FW08C, the 540kg, 530bhp Ford Cosworth DFV V8 powered car that Keke Rosberg drove in 1983.

The last time a Formula 1 car tackled the sweeping bends of Thruxton was when Damon Hill drove the title-winning Williams FW15C 25 years ago, clocking a stunning average speed of 147.25mph.

Other machines that will take to the track include a Lola T70, March 721g, Chevrolet Camaro, Ford GT and a host of motorcycles from different eras.

The Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship will also have a presence too with old and new machines turning a wheel; Rob Austin and Rob Collard in the machines they currently compete in whilst James and Anita Dodd pilot a Honda Accord and Nissan Primera, two icons of Super Touring.

The array of stunning machines don’t just stop on the track however with a wealth of much-loved static cars on display. In addition to the Rosberg Formula 1 machine, Williams will also showcase the famous ‘Red 5’ of Nigel Mansell that powered him to championship glory in 1992, the unique six-wheeled FW08B and the FW38 – the teams 2016 car.

Porsche’s last hurrah in the FIA World Endurance Championship – the stunning technical marvel that is the 919 Hybrid Sports Prototype – will join the likes of the Aston Martin GTE, Ford GT40 and much more.

Mansell himself will be in attendance too and will be joined my Murray Walker as they both officially open the brand-new, state-of-the-art £2 million Thruxton Centre at 12:00 noon on Sunday.

Beyond all of the track and paddock attractions there is set to be even more entertainment taking place around the venue across both days.

Coach rounds around the circuit, car club reunions, live music and fireworks on Saturday, as well as a funfair will ensure there is fun for all of the family. One eye should also be fixed on the skies on Sunday morning as the world-famous British Army parachute display team the Red Devils will perform their thrilling, adrenaline-fuelled aerial choreography over the circuit.

It is set to be a fitting way to mark five decades of Thruxton and it will also serve as the perfect start to the next 50 years as well.

Tickets will be available to purchase on the gate from £15.00 on Saturday, £20.00 on Sunday and £24.00 for the whole weekend.

BARC produces bank holiday blockbuster at Snetterton

Bank holiday Monday (May 7) saw a trio of British Automobile Racing Club championships soak up the sun with a bumper day of track action at Snetterton.

Descending on the Norfolk venue for the one-day meeting, fans were treated to the usual edge-of-the-seat thrills that each category has become accustomed to producing.

Enjoying big grids and close-quarter racing, the Hyundai Coupe Cup was once again in action for the third time this season. As he has done on countless occasions already in 2018, Steve Kite emerged as the man to beat in both races, sweeping his way to a brace of victories.

Despite taking both wins, the Misty Racing driver was made to work from them as he withstood pressure from Alex Cursley in the opening encounter before then fending off the advances of Wayne Rockett in the second. All three drivers would occupy the podium in both races.

The Max5 Racing Championship had a similar feel to that of the season-opener held at Pembrey in late April. Replicating his performance in South Wales, Paul Roddison romped to a pair of wins with Jeremy Shipley in tow as well.

Rounding out the BARC representatives was the Lancaster Insurance MG Owner’s Club Championship, which saw David Mellor power his MG ZR to be first across the line in both races that were run.

Joining the three BARC championships was also the Ford Saloon Series, Sports 2000 Championship and BSA National Championship for F125 Open.

Action aplenty on opening TOCA support package weekend

The TOCA support package was back in business at Brands Hatch this past weekend (April 7/8) with five championships kicking off their 2018 campaigns.

Once again competing alongside the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, there was high-drama throughout each category as they battled challenging conditions across both days.

In the Renault UK Clio Cup, spoils were shared between two title favourites. Multiple champion Paul Rivett showcased his experience in the opening race of the weekend, only after making contact with Max Coates early on.

Coming off the better of the two, Rivett powered away from the pack to the take a memorable victory. Behind him, the wounded Coates was unable to hold of the advances of James Colburn and Daniel Rowbottom, both of whom rounded out the podium.

Coates was the clear race winner in a wet race two, taking control from the start before storming into a lead he would ultimately never lose. Behind him though the tremendous battle for the remaining rostrum spots were decided as Rivett and youngster Jack McCarthy recovered from early struggles to join Coates in lifting silverware.

The Porsche Carrera Cup GB produced two different winners as well, with Dino Zamparelli and George Gamble taking a win apiece. Off the back of clinching pole position, Zamparelli asserted himself as one to watch this year with a dominant display in the curtain-raiser ahead of Tio Ellinas and Lewis Plato.

Plato had been on course to take race two honours until a mistake cost him, handing Gamble top spot on his first weekend in the series. Joining him on the podium was Ellinas and Zamparelli, who left the Kent circuit as championship leader.

The Ginetta Junior Championship delivered its usual mix of thrills ’n’ spills in true style, setting up what is set to be another fascinating campaign.

Last year’s scholarship winner Adam Smalley entered the season as one of the drivers to watch and he backed up his pre-season promise by grabbing the early advantage in the championship standings.

Claiming pole position in qualifying, the Elite Motorsport driver bagged victory in race one ahead of Ruben Del Sarte and Fin Green before then finishing hot on the heels of race two victor Luke Browning.

It is set to be a wide-open year in the Michelin Ginetta GT4 Supercup too with Charlie Ladell cementing his status as an early title favourite. The Rob Boston Racing was in imperious form around the 1.2 mile Indy circuit, taking two wins, with Carl Boardley capping off the weekend with a win of his own.

Rounding out the action in front a bumper trackside crowd was the British F4 Championship, which saw Ayrton Simmons enjoy a near perfect weekend, scoring a brace of wins. Sebastian Priaulx topped the rostrum in the remaining race.

For the full classification of results across all championships, click here.

Brands Hatch set for BARC Easter extravaganza

Brands Hatch is primed for a bank holiday weekend of blockbuster proportions on Sunday and Monday as the British Truck Racing Association Championship roars into life for another season.

Headlining what is a bumper programme of track action around the Indy layout, a mammoth crowd is set to descend on the Kent venue for an Easter extravaganza of thrills ’n’ spills.

Weighing in at more than five tonnes and producing more than 1000bhp each, nothing quite compares to British Truck Racing. This weekend’s opening event will see a total of seven races run across both Divisions, however the landscape of both has changed.

In the top tier, double and reigning champion Ryan Smith has elected not to return, meaning his title is very much up for grabs. Leading the list of contenders that fans will be looking out for is multiple champion Stuart Oliver, prolific front runner Dave Jenkins and Luke Taylor, amongst others.

Division 2 champion Mika Makinen will also missing from the grid this year, opening the floodgates in the more production-based category. Former title holder Adam Bint will be keen to get back to winning ways whilst the likes of Simon Cole, John Powell and Luke Garrett lead the long list of fellow contenders.

Elsewhere, one man that will be defending his title this year starting at Brands Hatch is Scott Bourne. Climbing to the top of the Pickup Truck Racing Championship mountain in 2017, Bourne is back with a new livery and the coveted number one adorning his truck.

In what has been a strong off-season for the championship as a whole, with an influx of entries being submitted, the popular category is set for another memorable year. Usual protagonists Lea Wood, David O’Reagan, Michael Smith and Mark Willis are all joined by a host of familiar and new faces – making the opening two races impossible to call.

Following on from a memorable opening weekend in mid-March at Oulton Park, the Legends Cars National Championship with MRF Tyres are back in action. Making the first of three visits to Brands Hatch this year, a bumper grid of the 5/8 scale machines are set to put on a show across the six races that are set to be run.

Jack Parker’s opening round consistency has placed him at the top of the standings however he has a host of race winners nipping at his heels. Will Gibson and Steve Whitelegg both took wins at Oulton Park and sit second and third in the points, with reigning champion John Mickel not far behind either.

Fans of all things BMW will be drawn to the Kumho BMW Championship, which gets underway this weekend too. Open to all models of the German manufacturer, the championship will once again run a multi-class system depending on specification.

Notable names to look out for during the season-opener include Russell Dack, Giuseppe Callari, James Card and Gareth Montgomery.

Rounding out the weekend’s jam-packed race programme will be the three categories from the BARC’s South East Centre; the BARC Modified Saloon Car Championship, BARC South East Tin Top Championship and Scrapco Metal/Avon Tyres Intermarque Championship.

All bringing together a diverse range of machines to their individual grids, a wealth of local talent is set to shine through over the course of the two days.

One of the big stories will lie in the Modified Saloon Car races as Rod barley bids to get back on track following his high speed crash at the same venue last November, injuring him and causing substantial damage to his Ford Escort RS.

Porsche Carrera Cup GB roars into life for 2018

The Porsche Carrera Cup GB has officially launched for 2018 with a bumper 23-car entry list confirmed during the annual Media Day at Silverstone on Monday 13th March.

Following on from a memorable 2017 campaign where the title went down to the wire, a new name is set to be etched on the coveted championship trophy with Charlie Eastwood and Daniel Cammish both moving on to new pastures.

Introducing the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car as well as a revised points structure and a trip to Monza onto the calendar, the TOCA support series is set for another meteoric year.

In the Pro class, 2017 runner-up Dino Zamparelli leads the list of drivers that will be battling it out for the overall title, this time spearheading Redline Racing’s charge.

Tio Ellinas is also back, this time switching to Slidesports, whilst Lewis Plato is keen to build on what proved to be a strong first season with front-running outfit JTR.

Another familiar face that will be keen to impress is former Ginetta GT Supercup champion Tom Wrigley. Making the jump from IN2 Racing to JTR, Wrigley will be one to watch as he embarks on his second campaign in the series.

Other notable names to look out for include Junior Scholarship winner Daniel Harper, who steps across from the Simpson Race Products Ginetta Junior Championship.

Elsewhere, the newly renamed Pro-Am class (formerly Pro-Am1) boasts a host of names, all of which can make an impact on the destiny of this year’s championship. Justin Sherwood, Seb Perez, Jamie Orton, Richard Hawken and Rory Collingbourne are just a few of the drivers that will be vying for glory.

The former Pro-Am2 class, now titled AM class, is back too with well-known drivers Shamus Jennings, Peter Kyle-Henney and Iain Dockerill. Add into the mix the likes of former BTCC racer turned team boss Daniel Welch and the level of competition is as stiff as ever in the Carrera Cup GB.

The opening two rounds of the season get underway at Brands Hatch on April 7/8.

Champions celebrated at BARC Championships Awards Evening

Proving to be one of the marquee nights on the calendar, the great and the good of UK motorsport came together on Saturday (17th February) for the annual BARC Championship Awards Evening.

Held at the Mecure Daventry Court Hotel for the first time, Alan Hyde hosted what proved to be a memorable night where a host of prestigious awards were handed out. In-keeping with the new venue there were also new trophies, provided by Aford Awards.

More than 30 drivers were awarded during the evening with Dunlop MSA British Touring Car champion Ashley Sutton leading the coveted list.

Alongside the championship awards, a further three illustrious accolades were handed out to unsuspecting winners.

The Densley Trophy, which is awarded to the most outstanding female driver in the BARC, went the way of Mighty Minis champion Alice Hughes whilst Junior Saloon Car title winner Will Dyrdal picked up The Peter Collins Memorial Trophy, awarded to the most promising newcomer competing in BARC events.

The Presidents Cup, which is presented to the most successful driver below international level, was awarded to BARC King Henry’s Taverns Clubmans champion Mike Evans.

Prize-giving didn’t just stop with those that sit behind-the-wheel however with two marshals picking up awards too. Di Hardy picked up the BARC Marshal of the Year Trophy whilst Dave Hodgson was bestowed with The Sir Clive Bossom Trophy, virtue of completing the most volunteering days.

Commenting on the evening, BARC Chief Operating Officer Drew Furlong said: “As always our annual awards night proved to be a fitting and memorable night to commemorate our champions of 2017.

“Last year proved to be another memorable season across all of our championships with many of them going right down to the wire and producing non-stop entertainment along the way.

“Evenings like this are a great way to commemorate everyone from the drivers that compete to those that work behind-the-scenes on putting together the events – as well as everyone in-between.

“It proved to be another awards evening to remember and has set everyone up for the season ahead.”

On top of the trophy presentation, the Club also awarded Formula 1 figurehead Bernie Ecclestone with a Gold Medal for his contribution to motorsport, which spanned countless decades.

Finally, as has become a tradition on the night, a total of £1595 was raised and donated to the BARC Marshals and Rescue Fund.

Ex-Rosberg 1983 Williams to star at Thruxton’s 50th Anniversary

The Williams FW08C raced by Keke Rosberg in the 1983 Formula 1 World Championship is set to return to the track as part of Thruxton Circuit’s eagerly-anticipated 50th Anniversary Celebration this spring.

Thruxton’s 50th Anniversary Celebration will take place over the weekend of 2/3 June. The first motorsport event to be held at the venue in its current guise was on Easter Monday, 1968 and half-a-century on, a whole host of single-seaters, sportscars and saloons from the last five decades will hit the track for a spirited sprint down memory lane.

Away from the race programme, there will be a raft of eye-catching demo runs and static displays, car club reunions and a smattering of famous faces, as well as a funfair, live music, overnight camping and a fireworks display in evidence of the festival’s family-friendly appeal.

With its 540kg aluminium honeycomb chassis powered by a three-litre Ford Cosworth DFV V8 engine punching out 530bhp and a six-speed gearbox, the Williams FW08C will both look and sound phenomenal as it scorches around Thruxton’s flat-out sweepers in the hands of a yet-to-be-confirmed high-profile driver. The last time an F1 car was driven at Thruxton in anger was all the way back in 1993, when Damon Hill averaged an eye-watering 147.25mph in the title-winning Williams FW15C.

“We are thrilled to be able to confirm the attendance of the Williams FW08C for a high-speed demo run at our 50th Anniversary Celebration,” enthused Thruxton Group Managing Director, Bill Coombs. “We are grateful to Williams Heritage for agreeing to supply the car.

“I have no doubt that the FW08C will make for a quite incredible spectacle in June. It is what I would call a ‘proper’ F1 car – with its screeching V8 engine and wide rear tyres – and it will surely bring back many evocative memories for those like me who were lucky enough to have witnessed it competing during its heyday. This really will be very special indeed.

“Best of all, this is only the first of several exciting announcements we have in the pipeline for our 50th Anniversary Celebration, so stay tuned to find out what else we have in store for an event that promises to be a race meeting with a difference and much, much more besides.”

Rosberg was the reigning Formula 1 World Champion in 1983, and the moustachioed Finn remained a major player as the complexion of the sport began to change with the advent of the legendary turbo era. Although the FW08C’s ageing, naturally-aspirated Cosworth powerplant was at a disadvantage around some circuits, at the higher-downforce tracks, it truly came into its own and Rosberg was the architect of a superbly-judged wet/dry victory in Monte-Carlo that year.

He went on to finish fifth in the world championship standings, with the additional points scored by French team-mate Jacques Laffite securing Williams fourth spot in the constructors’ classification.

The FW08C is now part of the esteemed Williams Heritage portfolio, which was created in 2014 to manage the British outfit’s collection of historic Formula 1 cars. It is headed up by Jonathan Williams and run by long-time former Williams mechanic and team manager Dickie Stanford.

Since the team’s debut in the top flight back in 1978, Williams cars have won 114 grands prix and no fewer than 16 world championships.

Advance tickets for Thruxton’s 50th Anniversary Celebration on 2/3 June are available from just £12 for Saturday entry and £15 for Sunday – or £24 for both days. Sunday grandstand seats are an additional £5. Accompanied children aged 15 and under will be admitted free of charge.

Goodwood ready to roll back the years with 20th Revival

West Sussex is set to take a spirited trip down memory lane this weekend (September 7/8/9) as star drivers and iconic machines from a variety of eras come together for the Goodwood Revival.

Running for its 20th year in 2018, the Revival is one of the marquee events on the historic racing calendar with classic cars, bikes and period dress taking centre stage amidst the evocative setting that is produced every year.

Arguably the most eagerly-anticipated set of races will come from the St. Mary’s Trophy where pro/am drivers share some of the greatest saloon cars from the 1960’s. With current touring car stars such as Andrew Jordan, Ashley Sutton, Gordon Shedden, Matt Neal and many more all set go wheel-to-wheel for bragging rights, expect jaw-dropping car control and edge-of-the-seat entertainment.

The Barry Sheene Memorial Trophy is also a two-part race for pre-1959 motorcycles that features some of the biggest names who compete on two wheels, such as Guy Martin – who served up a spectacular performance last year.

In-keeping with the spirit of the original Goodwood Members Meeting and returning to the timetable for the first time since 2015 is the Fordwater Trophy. Open to production-based sports and GT cars, this year’s race will heavily feature the Jaguar XK120, which is celebrating its 70th anniversary.

The Goodwood Trophy is another Revival regular with Grand Prix and Voiturette cars from 1930 to 1951 set to duke it out for supremacy. There will be a feast of spectacular cars from Aston Martin, Ferrari and Jaguar in the Freddie March Memorial Trophy whilst unlimited sports cars make up the grid for the Whitsun Trophy.

Jack Sears, the first-ever British Touring Car champion, will be honoured as a glittering array of cars duke it out for supremacy in a 25-minute encounter named after the late BTCC icon.

Two-and-a-half-litre Grand Prix cars that raced between 1952 and 1960 will likely produce an emphatic spectacle in the Richard & Gordon Trophies. High-octane thrills and spills will also be in high demand in the Sussex Trophy, Glover Trophy and Chichester Cup – which is for Formula Juniors.

Capping off the action at this year’s Goodwood Revival will be the Royal Automobile Club TT Celebration. The two-driver, 60-minute race is one of the highlights of the event each year as closed cockpit GT cars in the spirit of the RAC TT races from 1960 to 1964 tackle the demanding curves of Goodwood.

With an action-packed three days lying in wait, this year’s Goodwood Revival is set to be the biggest yet. For links to the star-studded entry list and timetable, click here.