View from the cheap seats




I received the November issue and, as usual, went straight to Nigel Roebuck’s Reflections and spotted the photo of Eau Rouge at Spa. This was especially apposite as I had not long returned home from a weekend spent at the Spa Six Hours, wallowing in nostalgia with my brother on our first trip there since visiting the Grand Prix in the late 1960s and finally seeing Pedro Rodríguez win in 1970.

I could not believe my eyes when I saw the picture of the €424 Eau Rouge grandstand ticket for the GP. For €25 each we had two days of free access to all areas of the circuit, and fantastic historic racing with cars ranging from ERA R1B to a Williams FW07 in the single-seater class, Can-Am monsters, ’50s and ’60s saloons and sports cars, etc.

For even cheaper spectating, come to Portugal and visit the Caramulo Motor Festival on the first weekend in September. The road up to the next village is closed for most of Saturday and Sunday for a timed hillclimb. The variety of cars is extraordinary. In 2008, for example, the entries included a Swallow Doretti, Unipower GT, Denzel and Siata. There is no entry charge but you need to get to the village fairly early each day because there is no official car park either. It is like a time warp of a 1950s British club event.

Thank you for 50 years of my monthly motoring fix. I was once able to express my personal thanks to WB when I found myself standing next to him spectating at Loton Park hillclimb and he seemed genuinely surprised that someone had recognised him. Happy days.

David Fraipont-Baker, Azere, Portugal