We begin this year’s Motor Sport Christmas Gift Guide with a selection of artwork, memorabilia, books and practical products chosen by our editorial staff. Scroll down for the picks, or click below to view all of our shop products
Andrew Frankel, Contributing Editor
Motor Sport binders
Because my father was as big a fan of Motor Sport as me, I have copies of almost every post-war issue. But while his were assiduously bound each year, mine have sat in ugly, nondescript magazine holders since I vacated the editor’s chair. I’d love to get them bound so they don’t look quite so scruffy on the shelf next to my dad’s. Only problem is, I left Motor Sport 20 years ago, which is quite a lot of binders…
Dominic Tobin, Digital Editor
Jim Clark replica helmet
A scale replica of a favourite driver’s crash helmet is guaranteed to go down well, although you may consider modern designs more suited to Christmas crackers – see Daniel Ricciardo. That doesn’t apply to this 1:2 scale model of Jim Clark’s helmet, ready to sit on a bookshelf or desk and evoke a lost era of racing. It’s the simple but bold design, the functional three bolts securing the visor and the implications of this being Clark’s only protection on the treacherous Tarmac of the Nordschleife, Spa-Francorchamps and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway that make it a poignant gift. Not only would it make a great talking point, but it also acts as a reminder of a bygone era, and each sale includes a donation to the Jim Clark Trust, supporting the Jim Clark Motorsport Museum in the Scottish Borders, which honours the story of one of racing’s all-time greats.
James Elson, Digital Intern
Ducati Panigale V4 Upriser
Why should four-wheeled fanatics have all the remote-control fun? While my real-life motorcycle skills are decidedly lacking, I can at least pretend with this Ducati Panigale Upriser. Its stabilising technology means that even I can drive it without indignantly flopping over into corners. Reaching speeds of up to 12mph, the Panigale can also perform donuts, drifts and wheelies a-la Max Biaggi circa 1998. And it has 45 minutes of drive time – coincidentally equal to an actual MotoGP race.
Joe Dunn, Editor
ARCC Moulton TSR electric bike
With public transport banjaxed by coronavirus and cars (in London at least) being taxed off the road, the humble bicycle has come into its own this year. And I can’t see that changing in 2021. The main drawback of all bikes is the pedalling, which is why I’d opt for this top-of-the range ARCC electric cycle, which relieves aching quadriceps with a welcome burst of electrons fed through a front-wheel-mounted motor – a bit like a small-scale MGU-H power unit… The system allows the rider to choose the level of assistance required manually or set it to automatic mode where it does all the thinking for you. It also features a launch control setting for sharp bursts of extra power, useful for getting away from traffic lights. The 1.3kg Bosch battery has a range of 30 miles and charges in 50 minutes. In its extensive testing by Motor Sport, the system worked flawlessly taking the idea of electric bikes to an entirely new level. The package – battery, motor and control pad – can be retrofitted to other bike models as well as ARCC’s own designs.
Lee Gale, Chief Sub Editor
Carrera Panamericana poster
I have much admiration for the gutsy drivers who took part in Mexico’s six-day Carrera Panamericana of 1950-54, where American ‘land yachts’ like Oldsmobiles, Lincolns and Studebackers lined up against European high-performance grand tourers. One of my favourite motor-racing stories occurred in the 1952 race. German driver Karl Kling won the sports-car category in a Mercedes- Benz 300SL despite hitting a vulture at 120mph. With a shattered windscreen and an unconscious co-driver, Kling drove a further 43 miles until his next tyre change in a cockpit decorated with blood, glass and feathers. This poster will be a good conversation piece should we ever be allowed guests again.
Robert Ladbrook, Special Contributor
Automobilist Targo Florio print
I’m a sucker for a pretty picture, and I’ve been getting into the history of the Targa Florio, which has produced some of the prettiest of them all. Automobilist may make a fine range of dramatic and modern racing posters, but this fine art print caught my attention. Titled A Swede Swerves Through Sicilians, it shows Ulf Norinder negotiating his Ferrari 250 GTO through a gaggle of spectators in 1964. I love the contrast between the full-tilt, bright Ferrari and the serenity of the spectators, presumably perched by the course enjoying an espresso with their petrol fumes.
Owen Norris, Art Editor
Scalextric McLaren F1 GTR
After the humiliation of being lapped several times by both my sons at Scalextric in my old ’90s Ferrari F40, on my list this year is the iconic Bell/Wallace McLaren to take the race to them in their far superior cars. Despite only finishing third at Le Mans in 1995, I’m sure the 1:32-scale Mach One Racing ‘Harrods’ GTR will have enough downforce and grunt for our high-speed track. Although there will be no rain to contend with in our loft, the dreaded Dunlop bridge and worn 30-year-old track will be sure to test its endurance to the full.
Mat Oxley, Columnist
John Surtees MV Agusta TT 1957 lithograph signed
Of all the great achievements across the history of motor sport, John Surtees winning both the MotoGP and Formula 1 World Championship titles is surely the standout, even if it’s somewhat overlooked. Over half-a-century later, it’s a feat that’s yet to be matched by anybody, and it’s unlikely it ever will be during the modern era of racing – unless Lewis Hamilton follows through on his bike interests and can seriously upset the two-wheeled establishment, or Mr Rossi heads in the opposite direction. But either is highly unlikely in truth. On two wheels, Surtees won seven world titles for MV Agusta before switching to cars, and then going on to win the F1 title with Ferrari four years later. This print of Il Leone on the MV at the Isle of Man TT is signed by the man himself – and will there ever be another John Surtees? Never. I may have to buy one myself!
Damien Smith, Special Contributor
Joel Clark retro event poster
I love event posters, especially those that capture the style and spirit of their time. Joel Clark’s reproduction of this poster from the 1985 Lombard RAC Rally is great. Clark began his career as a vinyl sticker maker for race teams, then went to art college. Now a full-time artist, he’s chosen here to celebrate the revered Group B era, and an event of great significance. The 1985 Lombard marked Henri Toivonen’s first victory in the fearsome Lancia Delta S4. It would also feature the MG Metro 6R4’s best WRC result, as home hero Tony Pond finished third. Fitting then, that your eye is drawn to the Mobil logo on its nose.
Gordon Cruickshank, Editor At Large
Junghans Meister Kalendar automatic watch
Perhaps it’s from proofreading our various watch pages in the magazine, but I’m developing an increasing interest in wrist-worn timepieces. It chimes with my fascination for fine engineering and unlike a car (all of mine at the moment being mostly fast asleep in the garage), a fine watch is something you can appreciate at any time through the day. This Junghans Meister Kalender appeals for its elegant simplicity of design – a traditional layout but just that bit cleaner and sharper – and the fact that it also tells the date, something I’m incapable of recalling without dragging out my phone several times a day. Just to add that extra touch, it also shows the phases of the moon, one of those ‘complications’ that watchmakers love to include. I’m sure one day I’ll need to know it…
Doug Nye, Contributing Editor
John, George and the HWMs
Simon Taylor’s fine two-volume book John, George and the HWMs represents one of the best value-for-money nostalgia- fests that any enthusiast for real-life racing as it was in the late 1940s/early ’50s could possibly want. As a yuletide escape from Covid-19, what for most promises to be a quiet Christmas should provide the ideal opportunity to savour these handsomely printed volumes with wonderful photography and Simon’s detailed and most readable text. At a time when BRM was an over-publicised laughing stock, the initials HWM earned profound respect throughout European road racing.
Jake Williams-Smith, Staff Writer
David Johnson print, Hamilton 2008
I will be in the minority here, likely bordering on sacrilege, but I believe McLaren’s finest livery is the Vodafone red against the sleek silver of Mercedes-Benz, and not the iconic Marlboro white and red. Maybe that’s because I never grew up watching the McLaren-Honda partnership in its pomp, but I did see McLaren-Mercedes battling Ferrari throughout the late 2000s and early 2010s. To me there was never a better- looking car on the grid. As far as wins in the rain go, Lewis Hamilton’s dominant victory at the 2008 British GP has to be one of the top wet-weather performances of all time. This limited-edition print captures that rainy Silverstone day in style.
Miscellany, August 1999
We are used to TV camera shots from cars in today's races. But who did it first? Certainly a cameraman with a cine-camera rode with Parry Thomas in the Leyland…
The hottest of all hot hatches
I am grateful to Renault for introducing me to a breed of car I had long thought extinct: the genuinely bonkers hot hatch. In fact this might be the maddest…
The first MS650 is sure to draw buyers to France next month, while online auctions are also a big pull Every year Porte de Versailles in Paris fills with thousands…