The annual motorsport opus that is Autosport International delivered it’s usual array of car launches, big announcements and classic racing machinery.
Visitors to were able to enjoy a host of different stands, attractions and performances and witness several big hitters from the world of speed being interviewed on the Autosport Stage. Former World Rally Championship holder Ari Vatanen reminisced about his long career in the sport and discussed his son Max’s campaign in the British Rally Championship this year, alongside Elfyn Evans in an M-Sport Ford Fiesta.
Three-time FIA World Champion Petter Solberg enthralled crowds with his view on the growth of the FIA World Rallycross Championship, his recent title win and bid to defend it in 2016.
Over at the Performance Car Show, the Peugeot 205 GTi was announced as the winner of a global poll to name the best hot hatch ever. The 205 GTi and the nine cars it beat to the title were on display for the duration of the show, under the umbrella of Hot Hatch Nirvana. This exhibit also chronicled the rise of small, fast car gathering together an unrivalled collection of iconic cars that have defined and developed the genre over decades, under the umbrella of ‘Evolution of the Hot Hatch’.
The Coys auction featured a mouthwatering mix of road, race and rally cars going under the hammer. Highlights of the sale included a rare 1974 Ferrari 246 GT Dino, an ex-Ford works Escort RS Cosworth and a 1982 ex-Russell Brookes Vauxhall Chevette rally car. There was feverish bidding for an Aston Martin DB2/4 MkIII which sold for £160,000, over £45,000 more than the guide price.
Elsewhere at Autosport International fans flocked to get up close to a grid of F1 cars more commonly seen at the world’s grand prix circuits. Whilst a duo of former “Stigs” – Perry McCarthy and Ben Collins – regaled visitors with their his exploits on Top Gear and stunt work in Hollywood.
Pictures courtesy of Comac O’Dowd