Brands Hatch hosted MSVR's newest event, Festival Italia, on Sunday 14 August 2016. Celebrating the emotion and beauty of one of Europe's most exciting motoring nations, there were themed racing, demonstrations, displays and plenty of Tricolore-infused off-track attractions.
Italy's long racing heritage was celebrated by an exciting and diverse race programme, which included two races for the stunning machines in the Pirelli Ferrari Formula Classic series. The Prancing Horse is the Mediterranean nation's most enduring icon, and it was a wonderful sight to see a full field of Italian stallions galloping around the world-famous Brands Hatch Indy circuit.
Pirelli Ferrari Formula Classic provided a scintillating cross-section of beautiful cars from a manufacturer that captures the imagination like no other, with racing examples of everything from the 308 of the '70s to modern classics such as the 355 of the '90s. There were opportunities for spectators to get up close to these cars and soak up the event's unique atmosphere during a free pre-race grid walk.
Other racing highlights were the Italiano vs. Inglese Allcomers, a special invitational race which saw Italian cars battling Britain's finest, and the BRSCC Alfa Romeo Championship. There were plenty of additional machines from Italy's most famous marque too, in the Ferrari Owner's Club Hillclimb Championship.
Italy's illustrious Grand Prix pedigree, through constructors such as Ferrari, Coloni, and Minardi, plus long-term sponsors such as Martini and Benetton, is almost unparalleled and was showcased with special Formula One demonstration runs. Other cars of particular interest took part in the on-track show too, including a Ferrari F40 and a Lancia Stratos. All of the racing, demonstrations and parades were organised by MSVR.
The venue's off-track areas were transformed into a show of a different kind, with plenty to see and do for all of the family, including the 'Italia in Piazza' food market, a live music stage, Italian clothes stalls, wine tasting, and children's activities. There were plenty of car displays too, starring vehicles old and new from manufacturers including Lamborghini, Alfa Romeo, Abarth, Fiat, Maserati, and many more.
The Ferrari Owners' Club of Great Britain were involved in the event in an official capacity, bringing a hospitality unit for its members, whilst allowing its car owners to take part in a 'best in show' competition and parade laps. This was a wonderful opportunity for all visitors to take a closer look at some exceptionally pretty cars, in pristine condition.
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