23/05/2012 - A fantastic line-up of rare and classic racing cars
has been entered for this weekend's Masters Festival (26-27
May), with many representing Formula One as the event celebrates
the history of motorsport's pinnacle.
A group of show-stopping demonstrations includes cars
representing the history of the current Lotus Formula 1 team, with
both Team Lotus and the Enstone-based factory's Benetton and
Toleman past on display. The car in which Ayrton Senna started his
illustrious F1 career in 1984 is joined by Benettons from 1990 and
1993, the latter complete with high-tech active suspension.
Meanwhile the 1989 Lotus 101 will be running as well as the classic
49 from 1967, with company founder Colin Chapman's son Clive at the
Also representing this earlier era will be March and BRM cars
driven by F1 veterans Derek Bell, Jackie Oliver and Howden Ganley.
Meanwhile a rare sight from the 1980s turbo era will be the
Ford-powered Beatrice Lola, a car once raced by 1980 World Champion
Alan Jones and designed by Ross Brawn, formerly of Benetton and
currently Team Principal at Mercedes.
In addition to these demonstrations, the races will see some
very special machinery taking a starring role. The famous six-wheel
Tyrrell is sure to be a crowd favourite in the Grand Prix Masters
race, meanwhile alongside the regular historic racers, former Red
Bull junior and current GP2 driver Brendon Hartley will taste an F1
car in the form of a Lotus 92 from 1983, the last Grand Prix car to
be designed under the guidance of Colin Chapman.
Festival regular Roger Wills will once again be attempting to
take part in as many races as possible during the weekend, with
ex-Minister and Le Mans racer Lord Drayson joining him on the grid
for several of them, whilst rock star Chris Rea is expected to
compete in a Lotus XI.
The Norfolk marque also has a heavy presence in the Historic
Grand Prix Cars Association race for pre 1966 racers, a time when
engines moved from the front of the car to behind the driver.
Pioneered by Cooper, the concept's early days can be seen with
several cars from the Surbiton manufacturer, whilst the traditional
Italian opposition comes from Maserati. A 250F, often described as
the most beautiful Grand Prix car ever designed, is joined by
pre-war machines from Modena.
The Latin connection continues in the other categories, with a
Lancia Group C sportscar that competed in the 1983 Brands Hatch
1000km classic in the hands of Italian pairing Riccardo Patrese and
Michele Alboreto. Other sportscar greats include the thunderous
Ford GT40 and McLaren Can-Am cars.
Meanwhile the MGB and Lotus Elan roadsters will feature strongly
in the Gentlemen Drivers race, as both are celebrating their 50th
anniversary year. A packed field of cars from the 1960s will be
complemented by their later successors in the 70s Celebration race,
with closely-fought action completing a stellar festival
Tickets for the Masters Historic Festival at Brands
Hatch on 26-27 May are available from £17, with free entry for
children aged 12 and under. For more information call 0843 453