A Silverstone hangar is home base for an ambitious outfit
Ever wondered what’s inside that big hangar to your left as you drive through Silverstone’s main entrance? Years ago it was a corporate entertainment venue. More recently it was home to the fleet of A1GP single-seaters when they weren’t being freighted around the globe. Today, it is packed full of Ferraris and the odd Maserati.
The giant building, whose shiny skin hides a skeleton that dates back to Silverstone’s WWII days, is the headquarters of FF Corse. To describe FF as a race team would be only half correct. It advertises itself as offering “Ferrari management services” and looks after customer cars for racing, track days and other events.
Set up by Anthony Cheshire, once a sparring partner of Corvette Racing star Oliver Gavin in Formula First 25 years ago, it filled a gap after Ferrari UK closed its own track day division, Club Fiorano. Cheshire started out with four cars in 2009. He now looks after more than 40.
Its programmes stretch across British GT, the second-tier GT Cup, the Britcar Endurance Championship and the Ferrari Challenge in Europe. The link-up with Dunbar and Mowlem is significant; this is the organisation’s first full-season venture into international sports cars.
Dunbar, who has done track days with Mowlem for some years, got the racing bug after retiring from a successful banking career. They shared a Challenge 458 in the GT Cup last year and then a 458 GT3 car in the Gulf 12 Hours last December. This season they compete in the new Michelin GT3 Le Mans Cup as part of Dunbar’s bid to compete in the world’s premier sports car race.
The six-round series, which incorporated the ‘Road to Le Mans’ support event ahead of this year’s 24 Hours, was established on the bill of the ELMS after the GTC class for GT3 machinery was hived off to make way for an influx of LMP3 prototypes. A move to GTE in the ELMS after an upgrade of the 488 is the likely next step for 54-year-old Dunbar as he pursues his dream.