An earlier date than usual will do nothing to dampen the importance of the HSCC’s Historic Superprix on the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit over the weekend of May 6/7.
Around 450 entries are expected for the annual event, which is headlined by the opening rounds of the Grand Prix Masters and World Sportscar Masters series. Both Masters categories will present a race each day, and a field of up to 30 pre-78 3-litre flat-bottomed Fl cars will make a fabulous sight on the acclaimed track.
Much interest will centre on the planned return to competition of the Amon F101, now restored by Masters boss Ron Maydon. If the car gets to the grid on Saturday, it will be only the second race start ever for the ex-Chris Amon chassis.
Adding further quality to the programme will be two HGPCA races as their season starts. Pre-61 and Pre-66 grids should draw fine entries for the Sunday races.
The rejuvenated Classic Sports Car Championship has a special 40-minute race on Saturday, with mandatory pit-stops and optional driver changes, and the club is confident of a 40-car field.
Meanwhile, the HSCC’s Historic Road Sports and ’70s Road Sports grids get to play on Sunday as Classic F3, Historic FF1600 and Historic Racing Saloons pack out Saturday’s programme.
Single-seater contests for the Derek Bell Trophy, Classic Racing Cars and Formula Junior complete a fine line-up, with the Juniors tackling the GP circuit for the second time in four weeks.
Musson begins Junior defence
A rare opportunity to race on the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit has ensured bumper entries for the opening races for both the FIA Lurani Trophy Formula Junior Championship and Top Hat’s Sebring Salute series.
Defending champion Kevin Musson starts his Lurani Trophy title defence in his Lotus 18 in the pair of 25-minute races. Typically, for one of the most popular and well-supported categories in historic racing, a cracking entry has been assembled covering both front and rear-engined cars. Michael Hibberd (Lotus 27) and Martin Walford (Lotus 22) will take on the European raiders.
The Sebring Salute has a 30-minute race and a strong field is being gathered, tempted by the thrill of tackling the GP circuit. Heading the entry will be the Ford GT 40 of Shaun Lynn and the Lola T70 of Nigel Hulme, while David Clark’s ex-Chris Amon Elva Mk8 will use nimble handling to harry the V8s. Also notable will be the return to racing of a Piper GT, in the hands of Eddy Perk.
Cadwell thrash for Historic racers
The splendidly three-dimensional Cadwell Park circuit in Lincolnshire is sadly underutilised for classic and historic racing, but the annual visit by the Historic Sports Car Club is always a highlight.
Most of the club’s championships will be on the schedule on Sunday April 23 as well as Historic Formula Junior and Jaguar XKs. However, circuit licence restrictions preclude a Derek Bell Trophy race.
Historic FF1600 and Historic Racing Saloons are sure to deliver close racing, with Neil Fowler and Nelson Rowe again heading the FF1600 field.
Total entries for the eight races are heading for the 200 mark, with capacity 28-car grids for several races.
F1, F2, Can-Am for tribute to Jim Clark
Hockenheim in April will be forever linked with Jim Clark: it is now 38 years since the sublimely talented Scot died in an F2 race at the German circuit.
In his memory, the financially troubled circuit is developing a major historic racing festival and this year’s event, running from April 28-30, promises to be the best yet.
In a mammoth 19-race schedule, the opening rounds of three major series take pride of place. The Thoroughbred Grand Prix, Orwell Supersports and European Formula Two championships are all set for bumper seasons, and with a support programme that takes in the Shell Ferrari Historic Challenge and FIA GTC races, the meeting has plenty to offer race-goers.
With well over 40 registrations, including 10 Can-Am leviathans, the Orwell Supersports Cup will be magnificent. Hockenheim will favour the big bangers as Richard Piper (McLaren M8F) opens his title defence. Jost Kalisch is back with the BRM P154 and former Formula Ford ace Frank Bradley has eight litres of Chevy power in his March 717
Meanwhile, the F2 grid should be a strong one after the 1600cc and 2-litre contingents got together to run a combined series this year.
All the regular TGP front-runners are expected in a grid likely to be around 28 cars, topped by 2005 race winner Christian GIäsel (Brabham BT49D). The defending champion faces the BT49C of Joaquin Folch, the Williams FW08 of Richard Eyre and the Arrows A4 of the ever-attacking Hubertus Bahlsen.
Also trading up to an Arrows A4, and chasing another podium, is Eyre’s partner Janine Payne, while Peter Sowerby has stepped up to the ex-Freddy Kumschick Williams FW07C.
John Delane runs Tyrrell 001 in the pre-71 class, and local racer Peter Wuensch should top the post -71 non-ground-effect runners in his Wolf WR2. Newcomers to TGP include Frenchmen Christophe d’Ansembourg (Lotus 76) and Patrick d’Aubreby (Tyrrell 012).