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Ti 10: Bank holiday weekend car events

3 weeks ago

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James Mills | Managing editor


2 May 2024

If we’ve learned anything in this post-pandemic world, it’s that now more than ever we collectively appreciate the chance to get out and meet people. And with a bank holiday weekend almost upon us, the crew behind Ti are making plans for how best to spend that time.

Doubtless there will be, in no particular order, bungled DIY, family gatherings, beverage consumption, sport in all shapes and sizes, narrowly averted barbecue disasters and, fingers crossed, the appearance of some sunshine and the garden furniture. But there are no prizes for guessing what the icing on the cake would be: a chance to get out and indulge our passion for cars, taking in a car event or two.

If you are still to make plans, here are 10 very varied car and motorsport events for those of you who’d like to get out there and get your fix.

Indy 500: A British success story – Silverstone, from 1 May

Price: £22.50 adults; £13.50 age 5-15

Info: Silverstone Museum

Perfectly timed after opening this month, the new exhibition about America’s best-known motor race has a theme that all those on this side of the pond will find fascinating. The Indy 500: A British Success Story celebrates the great thinkers, drivers and cars that have emerged from Britain and figured in the Indy 500, a race that can be traced back to 1911.

The exhibition’s star turn is the presence of Nigel Mansell’s back-to-back F1 and IndyCar title-winning cars, the 1992 Williams FW14B and the Lola T93/00, displayed together. And when you buy a full-priced day ticket online, Silverstone Museum will convert that to an annual pass, at no extra cost.

mansell lola

Gaydon Land Rover Show, British Motor Museum, 4 & 5 May

Price: £10 to exhibit; £16 adult; £9 age 5-16

Info: British Motor Museum

Hands up if you remember the slightly harsh comparison of Land Rover’s P38 Range Rover, launched at the tail end of 1994, with the Metrocab taxi? If you do, then like us you might wonder where time goes, as it’s 30 years since the upmarket 4×4 hit the road. That’s just one of the themes that will be showcased during the Gaydon Land Rover Show, which brings together fans of the original Series 1-3 models, Defenders old and new, all Range Rovers and more besides.

And, if you’re an owner of a Land Rover, you’re invited to exhibit your car for just £10, which includes entry to the British Motor Museum where you can see ‘HUE 166’, the original pre-production Land Rover prototype that Maurice Wilks and team tested on Anglesey in 1948.

Italian Car Day – Brooklands Museum, 4 May

Prices: £29.95 adult, £12.95 age 4-17

Info: Brooklands Museum

What could be better than a day out at Brooklands Museum, tracing the history of motor racing in Britain – and what a history it is, as the world’s first purpose-built motor racing circuit – and kicking the tyres of Concorde, the Harrier jump jet and a Spitfire?

How about one of the biggest showings of Italian cars – and a good few motorbikes too? With live track demonstrations you’ll also get to hear why Italian engines are so often said to be some of the greatest to do service beneath a bonnet. Watch out for the Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 GS, raced at Brooklands by Captain George Eyston, a three-time Land Speed Record holder.

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Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe – Brands Hatch, 4 and 5 May

Prices: £32 adult, £19 age 13-15

Info: Brands Hatch

With race machinery that’s spun out of the homologation-special sports cars so beloved by Ti, and a lineup of drivers that includes one (annoyingly talented) Valentino Rossi, the Fanatec GT World Challenge descends on Brands Hatch this weekend.

Sunday is the day to visit if you want to catch more than just qualifying sessions – of course you do – and a top tip is to pay an extra tenner and pre-book parking on the infield at Southbank, opposite the back of the pits and a great place to base yourself and walk out to some of the best corners at Kent’s hugely popular track.

Rover V8 Powered Car Meet – Fairmile pub Cobham, 5 May

Price: Free

Info: Facebook

‘A moment’s silence, please, for the passing of the Queen Mother of motoring, the Rover V8 engine.’ So began a fitting tribute by Top Gear’s Richard Hammond to the engine that, for an unexpectedly long period – 37 years no less – powered some of the most characterful cars ever to take to the road.

There have been Ginettas, Land Rovers, Marcoses, MGs, Morgans, Rovers, Triumphs and, pause for breath, TVRs that burbled to the tune of the Buick-designed all-aluminium V8. With this in mind, the monthly meeting of all vehicles powered by the Rover V8 is probably worth a trip, especially if you’re within striking distance of the venue – the Fairmile pub in Cobham, Surrey, between 9.30am and 12.30pm.

Donington Historic Festival, 4 and 5 May

Prices: £26 adult, £16 age 13-15

Info: Donington Park

We’d have a hard time picking just one of the championships going into battle during the Donington Historic Festival weekend, so pack a picnic, some camping chairs and blanket or two, make a full day of it and don’t miss a thing.

From the Gerry Marshall Trophy to the Historic Touring Car Challenge, not to mention the Jack Sears Trophy and the Royal Automobile Club Woodcote Trophy & Stirling Moss Trophy, it promises four-wheel drifting aplenty and lots of close racing – all taking place at one of the most spectacular circuits in the UK.

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VSCC Speed Championship – Curborough, 5 May

Price: £10.84

Info: VSCC

If you’re looking for quirky characters and grand old cars, driven in the sort of flamboyant style that’s always a sight to behold, look no further than the Vintage Sports Car Club (VSCC).

The club’s 2024 sprint and hillclimb schedule begins with a visit to Curborough, the sprint course in Staffordshire that grew out of RAF Lichfield, and any visit not only promises action but a chance to wander the paddock and hear the fascinating stories behind many cars we guarantee you won’t be familiar with.

Modified Live – Cadwell Park, 6 May

Price: £23 adult, £14 age 13-15

Info: Cadwell Park

Modified Live is the kind of car event that will hold kids’ attention and bring to life their online gaming experience with the visceral noise and pungent aromas of drifting, during the Motorsport UK Drift Pro Championship.

Another crowd-pleaser is the Time Attack UK series, which sees drivers of modified cars do their best against the clock. With car club displays, a show n’ shine competition and plenty of trade stands, this is the place to experience a touch of The Fast and the Furious for yourself.

ML2022 CP 3 web

Track day – Anglesey Circuit, 6 May

Price: £229

Info: Anglesey Circuit

The chances are you’ll have heard good things about Anglesey Circuit but have never managed to pay it a visit. Well now’s your chance to book yourself onto a last-minute track day on bank holiday Monday, and experience it for yourself.

Anglesey is unquestionably one of Ti’s favourite circuits, offering picture postcard sea views, a thrilling mix of corners and undulations, and a super-smooth surface. The Grand Prix layout will be in use, but note the noise limit of 95dB and the exclusion of electric and hybrid-powered cars.

Speed into Spring – Shelsley Walsh, 4 & 5 May

Price: from £10 adult, under-16s free

Info: Shelsley Walsh

In case you missed it, Ti’s very own Dan Prosser recently entered the motorsport history books after setting a new hillclimb record at the historic Shelsley Walsh in Worcestershire. The record was for the fastest estate car to run up the hill, and Dan was at the wheel of a Porsche Taycan Turbo S Sport Turismo, completing the steep 1000-yard course in 31.43 seconds.

Impressive, but not half as impressive as some of the machinery you’ll witness at this weekend’s Speed into Spring event, which will see competitors in 600bhp+ purpose-designed hillclimb cars battle it out in the Midland Hill Climb Championship.

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