The great and sideways

The drivers to watch in 2018

Oliver Hart

One of the younger generation of historic racers coming through the ranks, teenager Hart is remarkable to watch in the Cobra he often shares with his father David – especially if it’s wet. Rises to the challenge at the quick circuits, too, and is expected to vie for outright victory in the TT Celebration at the Goodwood Revival.

Mike and Andrew Jordan

Whatever plaudits you can heap on one, the same applies to the other – so they’re here together. Both incredibly versatile, rarely make mistakes, and are crushingly consistent. Always approachable too, and their love of historics – despite moderns featuring on both CVs – is plain to see.

Martin Stretton

The complete package. Renowned for his set-up knowledge, which matched to sublime natural talent means he features at the sharp end whether he’s in fearsome historic F1 or regular sports or saloon cars. Get yourself to the Monaco Historique to watch a master at work.

Frank Stippler

Thought by many to be the best of the best currently competing in historics. A former Porsche Carrera Cup champion – and a current Audi racer (and employee) – Stippler is a Nürburgring expert and a winner at the Le Mans Classic and Goodwood Revival.

Chris Ward

Former chief instructor at Silverstone, and now running JD Classics’ racing activities, Chris Ward is a phenomenally adaptable driver, and a master in historic Jaguars. Always worth watching at the Revival, where he has won the RAC TT Celebration twice.

Richard Meaden

Gets embarrassed by the nickname bestowed on him by the Motor Sport editorial team (‘Frère’), but Dickie is a genuinely brilliant racer/journalist. Heat winner in the St Mary’s Trophy at the Goodwood Revival in 2017, and will be competing all over Europe in 2018.

Nick Padmore

Incredibly versatile racer who climbed the ladder via karts, single-seaters, Radicals and GT cars, then took a left turn into classics. Now one of the finest historic F1 drivers of his generation, plus a regular at Goodwood where he holds the lap record in a Lola T70.

Nick Swift

The family business is fast Minis, and Nick has been racing them all over the world for 31 years. Revels in the giant-killing opportunities the Mini provides and the manner in which he teases maximum pace from the smallest of race cars is commitment personified.

Steve Soper

Best known for his ’80s saloon car exploits, but let’s not forget that Steve was a works BMW driver and twice won the Spa 24 Hours outright. Epitomises the joy that historic racing brings; he loves doing it, competitors love racing against him and spectators get to witness a true legend.

Not forgetting…

One of the joys of historic racing is that you can see legends from the past demonstrate the skills that made them famous. Richard Attwood, now 77, Derek Bell, Jackie Oliver and Jochen Mass are a joy to watch, as is Tom Kristensen – a modern-era Le Mans legend who demonstrates every year at Goodwood that he could have won in any era at Le Sarthe.