Classic Sports Car
SILVER SCREEN ACES
The usual suspects, and then some, who turned their hands to motorsport away from the safety of the silver screen
Thespians who could act the part on track
There have been countless films rooted in motorsport, most of which comprise one big credibility chasm. Invariably, a driver will go faster by shifting down a gear while suddenly discovering an extra inch or two of throttle movement. Either that or they will make eye contact with, and gesticulate wildly to, another driver while travelling at north of 200mph. Oh, and at some point they will probably have to drive through fire in a bid to locate their misplaced mettle, and… well, you get the idea. Such celluloid ‘gems’ require rather a high tolerance for suffering on the part of the viewer, not to mention the jettisoning of reason.
However, while few racing flicks can be traced back to anything like reality, a handful of stars made the leap from thespian to driver in real life. Some were a bit rubbish, others conspicuously less so. Gathered here are 10 of those who clearly loved driving a racing car, and not merely as filmic artifice.
Some, such as driver/team owner Paul Newman, achieved a lot, while others competed only for a short time but made an impression for all the right reasons. Conversely, another built his own car long before he ventured into showbusiness. It’s far from definitive, but these were rather more convincing as racing drivers than the racers who have had a go at acting…