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Race Retro reports record turnout in 2017

20 December 2017

Race Retro, the international historic motorsport show, has reported a record turnout in its 15th anniversary year.

With plenty of motorsport action, both inside the halls and out on the Live Rally Stage, 21,000 attendees joined the party, joined by special guests including rally legend Ari Vatanen, Le Mans endurance hero Tom Kristensen, and former motorcycle World Champion ‘Fast’ Freddie Spencer.

A huge crowd gathered as Jim Clark’s Lotus 33 R11 was unveiled for the first time in public for more 40 years as part of a launch for the Jim Clark Trust’s crowdfunding appeal. Clark’s cousin Doug Niven spoke of the plans to open a new Jim Clark Museum in 2018, asking for support to help make the new development a reality.

Race Retro’s 50th anniversary celebration of the Cosworth DFV turned heads with a display curated by engine designer Mike Costin, co-founder of Cosworth with Keith Duckworth – two Hall of Fame nominees for 2017.

Cars featured in the tribute included the rare Tyrell P34 six-wheeler, the Cosworth 4WD, the Lotus 49B, and James Hunt’s McLaren M23.

Out on the Live Rally Stage, under the watchful eye of the team from Rallying with Group B, around 80 Group A, B and C cars provided spectators with thrill after thrill, especially when former World Rally Champion Ari Vatanen got back behind the wheel of the Rothmans Ford Escort and Subaru Legacy, which he drove in period.

Motorcycle racing fans were entertained by Fast Freddie Spencer, also a Hall of Fame nominee for 2017, who gave a preview of his forthcoming book. Ken Perch’s 1964 Aermacchi Ala D’Oro was the runner up to Phil Knapton’s 1974 Suzuki GT750 two-stroke Café Racer.

The winner of the inaugural Pride of the Paddock award was presented by Ari Vatanen. Ian Thompson’s replica of the Peugeot 205 T16 rally car, which Vatanen drove in period, was chosen by the visitors – and even signed by the man himself. The runner up was Marcus Ridley’s 1966 Ford Mustang.

Lee Masters, acting show director of Race Retro, said: “We have received incredible feedback from visitors with a tremendous response to our new elements.

“Exhibitors also reported strong trading with 60 per cent rebooking for 2018 already. Planning for next year starts now!”

The next Race Retro will be held on 23-25 February 2018.

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