(This blog is about my adventures a week ago at Silverstone, as such it is about a week out of date, sorry for being so tardy in my blogging, but I spent most of last week planning my upcoming trip to Ireland, and this last weekend at the Shelsley Walsh Hillclimb, more on that in a later blogs).
It’s hard to believe, but my six-month sojourn in the UK is 2/3 over! The time is flying by, but still more good stuff to come. As you may have heard, the UK is enjoying (depending on who you talk to) the best and driest summer since 1968! There has been virtually no rain in my area since the first of June. As I write this, it’s sunny and 75 degrees with the forecast saying, “more of the same”. Needless to say, that’s great news for me and I have not had the top up on the Jag since returning from the Healey trip to Europe. Hope it holds. (But wait for the next blog, things are changing!)
Last week, on Friday and Saturday I attended the Silverstone Classic, similar to the Monterey Historics at Laguna Seca. While the “main event” at Silverstone is the racing, the most amazing part for me were the Car Club displays. I am not exaggerating when I say that there were at least 10,000 vintage, classic and sports cars in the over 100 Club displays on the infield. The main Porsche area had over 1000 cars alone! They had a huge hospitality tent and their own private grandstand. We had over 500 Jags. By way of perspective, the Lamborghini club had 50 cars and their own semi-trailer and tent. There were 75 McLaren’s. The TVR stand had over 200 cars! Virtually every car make had a big display. It was quite a car show.
The racing was good, though too many “late model” touring cars, F1 cars and similar for my liking. I enjoy the older car classes (pre-war, 50’s and 60’s stuff), the later stuff not so much. I guess those newer cars resonant better with the younger crowd (and there were many of them with families in tow). The other downside to this is that the older cars, just like at Laguna, get all lumped into a few race groups, so you have up to eight classes in a single race. Some are much faster than others, so things get strung out, and it is really difficult to tell who is racing who and who is leading.
I also found the track to be “not so viewer friendly”. First of all, it is a huge circuit, over 2.5 miles long, so getting around, even with the bus service, required a bit if hiking. There were two pit areas, both open to the public, but at opposite ends of the track. Food and beverage were in abundance and convenient and there was a huge vendor “Main Street” with all manner of goodies for sale, music, food and demonstrations. Mike Brewer of Wheeler Dealers was giving a series of lectures on evaluating various classic cars, but I never did find him, despite two days of roaming. The most frustrating part was that almost all of the best grandstands were either closed or limited to special pass holders. So, you will see in the photos, it was hard to get a really interesting vantage point.
All three of the Jag Clubs I belong to over here were in attendance, so I got to visit with some new-old friends and see some pretty special cars. This is not the Goodwood Revival, but an interesting cousin. And an iconic and historic track. Glad I went, one more item checked off the Bucket List.
The links below are a couple of short videos. I still have not found software that will allow me to merge several videos into one. If anyone out there has experience at this, I would love to hear it.
ONE OF THE THREE HEALEY CLUB DISPLAYS, THIS ONE WITH SOME INTERESTING PRE-AUSTIN HEALEY CARS
DISPLAYS OF PORSCHE TRACK CARS. SEEMS EACH PORSCHE DEALER HAS TO SPONSOR AT LEAST ONE TRACK CAR AND THE SIGN INDICATE WHICH CAR IS FROM WHICH DEALER.
THERE WERE OVER 50 “DB” ASTON’S IN THE ASTON MARTIN CLUB AREA. THAT’S OVER $50 MILLION WORTH OF CARS!
ONE OF THE XK’S THAT RACED
THE HEALEY RACE GROUP, INCLUDING A 100S AND TWO FAMOUS RALLY CARS
A FEW “LOTII”
THE Z CAR CLUB HAD ABOUT 25 CARS, THIS “SANITIZED” ONE GAVE ME SOME IDEAS FOR HOW TO DO MY CAR.
EVEN THIS ONE, SAME COLOR AS MINE, WITHOUT THE BUMPER OVERRIDERS WE GOT IN THE US WAS INTERESTING.
SOME OF THE HEALEYS IN COMPETITION
THIS IS WHY COMBINING CLASSES MAKES THE RACING SO CONFUSING.
THE ONLY XK150 IN THE PACK, THOUGH THERE WERE TWO D-TYPES
THIS WAS ONE OF THE “LITTLE” PORSCHE CLUBS
THE MAIN PORSCHE CLUB, INCLUDING HUGE HOSPITALITY TENT AND THEIR OWN PRIVATE GRANDSTAND.
LAMBOS AND JAGS
ENTRANCE TO THE JAG AREA, WITH LAMBOS IN FRONT
LOVELY D TYPE
AND EQUALLY LOVELY C TYPE
ONE OF THE ORIGINAL LIGHTWEIGHT E TYPES, FRESH FROM A 4000 HOUR RESTORATION ($400K SPENT, BUT WORTH ABOUT $4 MILLION)
XJ220, JAGUAR’S SUPERCAR OF THE 90’S
OVER 200 TVR’S. MOST PEOPLE DON’T EVEN KNOW WHAT A TVR IS!
ANOTHER GREAT D TYPE
THE LAMBO GUYS HAD A SEMI TRAILER JUST TO SELL THEIR “STUFF” AND A HUGE HOSPITALITY TENT. IT’S NICE TO BE RICH (POSH).
WHEN RENAULT “WIND” OWNERS HAVE THEIR OWN CLUB AREA, YOU KNOW THAT EVERYBODY WAS REPRESENTED. I DIDN’T BOTHER WITH THE MUNDANE TRIUMPH AND MG CLUBS, THERE WERE HUNDREDS OF CARS
BIKE RACING TOO