It’s not long now until Pete’s 5th race in the Porsche Classic Boxster Cup, 2021 season at the Silverstone GP Circuit. And as usual, the curious ladies at the United Washrooms head office wanted to find out more about the track, read on to find out our Top 10 Facts…..
Fact 2: The Silverstone circuit was once operational as a Royal Air Force bomber station from 1943 to 1946. The airfield’s three runways, in classic WWII triangle format, still lie within the outline of the present track.
Fact 3: Silverstone was first used for motorsport in 1947 for an impromptu race organised by a group of friends. 12 drivers raced over a 2 mile (3.2km) circuit during which one member, Maurice Geoghegan ran over a sheep that wandered onto the airfield. The sheep was killed, and the car was written off. As a result, this informal race soon became known as the Mutton Grand Prix.
Fact 4: The Royal Automobile Club leased the airfield and set up a more formal racing circuit. Their first two races were held on the runways, with long straights and tight hairpin corners.
Fact 5: The British Grand Prix began at Silverstone in 1948 and is still raced there now. The 1950 Grand Prix was a significant race for the track as it was attended by King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, the first and only time a reigning monarch has attended a motor race in Britain!
Fact 6: One of the most loved members at the Silverstone Race Circuit was James Brown who joined in August 1948 and was challenged to create the Grand Prix Circuit in less than two months! Brown worked at the circuit right up until he died nearly 40 years later.
Fact 7: The Silverstone Race Circuit is the 4th longest circuit in the current Formula One Calendar.
Fact 8: In 2018, the track was resurfaced, however following drainage problems on the track, they had to cancel the Moto GP event and it was resurfaced again in 2019.
Fact 9: Silverstone is known to be a fast-paced and overtake-friendly circuit, however, following several fatal accidents in the early 90s, particularly the Imola tragedies when Formula One legend Ayrton Senna and Roland Ratzenberger died within just one day of each other, Formula One officials called for the remodeling and redesign of a number of circuits to increase safety. For Silverstone, this meant several kinks and high-speed turns, such as Abbey corner were modified to a chicane to make it less dangerous.
Fact 10: Despite the Maggots corner name, there are no funny stories about insects at the track. Maggots corner is one of Silverstone’s highest speed corners. It is part of a complex trio, Maggots, Becketts and Chapel. They are three left-right corners in immediate succession. You need to be doing a minimum of 130 miles per hour to execute them!
Written by: Abi Glover, Business Support Co-ordinator