SHELSLEY WALSH CLAS­SIC NOS­TAL­GIA

Motor Sport News - - Insight: Things To See In ’17 - Matt James Paul Lawrence

When: July 22/23 Where: Shelsley Walsh, Worces­ter­shire Web: shelsley-walsh.co.uk There is nowhere in the rest of motorsport quite like Shelsley Walsh. This most his­toric of venues is steeped in the sport’s his­tory go­ing back 111 years and the venue’s an­nual Clas­sic Nos­tal­gia week­end is now firmly es­tab­lished as one of the must-do events in the clas­sic cal­en­dar.

For a venue with such a re­mark­able his­tory, the July week­end caps a busy season of hill­climb­ing on the 1000-yard adren­a­line rush up the side of the Teme Val­ley. For the very quick­est, it is all over in less than 25 sec­onds, but the at­mos­phere and ap­peal of the Worces­ter­shire venue keeps com­peti­tors and fans alike com­ing back for more.

Clas­sic Nos­tal­gia is a trip through hill­climb his­tory, with classes span­ning eight decades of the sport. From hum­ble road-go­ing pro­duc­tion sports cars to period sin­gle-seaters and the amaz­ing Shelsley Spe­cials, there is con­stant ac­tion on the hill.

How­ever, that is only part of the event. The ever-crowded pad­dock area is home to live mu­sic and a raft of other period attractions, while the spec­ta­tor car park is crammed with clas­sics of all ages.

The climb to the Esses is a bit of a pull for spec­ta­tors, but it is worth ev­ery step as 200 pre-1980s cars take on the chal­lenge of one of Bri­tain’s finest motorsport venues.

When: Septem­ber 23 (pro­vi­sional) Where: Cas­tle Combe Cir­cuit, Wilt­shire Web: ral­ly­day.com Was it bet­ter ‘back then’? Who knows? Rallying is one of the worst sports for don­ning the rose-tinted spec­ta­cles and imag­in­ing ev­ery­thing Group B or BDA was bet­ter than mod­ern day.

Maybe it’s right. But cur­rent rallying is pretty spec­tac­u­lar too. Just ask Kris Meeke after his record-break­ing Rally Fin­land win.

How­ever, if you like a bit of both, you can have your cake and eat it at Ral­ly­day. It’s a fes­ti­val of old and new. Stars from the Bri­tish cham­pi­onship and na­tional rallying bring the up-to­date R5s and R2s for those hooked on cur­rent rallying. There’s al­ways a great dose of mod­ern at the event.

But those Group B and ear­lier fans won’t be dis­ap­pointed by what’s on of­fer ei­ther. An eclec­tic cock­tail of his­toric mon­sters take to the track for demon­stra­tion runs.

Can we spec­u­late now? Last year we had El­fyn Evans and Eric Camilli at the event giv­ing a Ford Fi­esta R5 a spin. The squad has a new mem­ber this year, Se­bastien Ogier. And he’s at­tended be­fore.

Could the four-time champ be in at­ten­dance this year? The prospect of Ogier turn­ing up, never mind a new 2017 Ford Fi­esta WRC, is tan­ta­lis­ing. It may never hap­pen. But we can dream.

Shelsley’s Clas­sic event is home to great ma­chin­ery

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