Once again Autosport International brought together different levels of the British motorsport community into one place for both the fans and the industry to interact with. From F1 to karting, from the WRC to grass track racing, every aspect of our sport was on display, and everybody had a story to tell.
Here’s five things that mad our ears prick up:
FERRARI CHALLENGE CARNAGE
Ferrari Challenge UK had Andrea Mladosic and Ilaria Rattaro up on the Autosport stage to launch the new series for the 488. Andrea pointed out that a large number spare parts will be trucked around the UK for the four race meetings – and that the majority of those are included in the package that the competitors are paying for. Over at the Ferrari stand the talk featured words like ‘mental’ and ‘carnage’ when the prospect of a 20 car grid of these machines pile into the first couple of corners at Croft!
W SERIES MESSAGE STILL BEING PUSHED
The controversial W Series made a huge impact at the show. A plush stand with the bonus of having David Coulthard in attendance certainly caught the eye, the fans were all over it, and there was a buzz about the place. A chat with comms guru Matt Bishop is always a pleasure. His push on their all important message is starting to make an impact – They don’t have millions to gamble on a couple of drivers, but they want to invest in opportunities for women in racing, not just in the cockpit.
THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT – WELL, AT THE BRSCC THEY ARE
Of course Karting had its presence at the show, and the presence of Karting simulators exposes how cut throat the cutting edge of the discipline is, but the budgets for the elite has become astronomical, so the push to get more kids aged 14-17 into cars continues. The Fiesta Junior Championship was an important part of the BRSCC stand, and the message that you can get youngsters on real racing tracks in a real car, at the fraction of the price of a Kart, was one that was being pressed. One Karting Dad I spoke too didn’t even know the series existed, much less at an entry point that costs half of what he’s looking at this year.
FOCUS ON FUN, EVEN THOUGH IT WILL GET SERIOUS
With the exception of the RS, the Ford Focus usually does not get the blood flowing. That should change with the introduction of the new Focus Cup. The cars will be evenly matched, and the racing will be close, but I can tell you this, there will not be a paddock in the sport that will match these guys for fun. Don’t think that it means they don’t take the cars and the racing seriously, they certainly do, the cars presented as they were proved that, but with the free flowing jokes and camaraderie on display, I know where I’ll be headed on a raceday for some banter!
POWER AND THE GLORY
The HSCC stand had a tribute to 50 years of F5000, and found itself surrounded by beefed up exotica in the Performance and Tuning section. The chrome wrapped Lamborghini and Audi machines on display might turn heads on the street, but they are paltry toys compared to the behemoths that the veteran club had on display. The newly launched XL Aurora series for these cars, plus pre-79 F2 and Formula Atlantic cars is a must for all racing fans in 2019.
Motor Racing UK will launch in April 2019 with its first print issue. The features based magazine will cover British circuit racing from BTCC and BGT to Clubsports and Historics. A must for every national racing fan and competitor, it will feature incise and entertaining content, and will cover the whole breadth of British racing both on and off the track.