7 km long, in the Ardennes and famous for names such as La source, Raidillon and Double Gauche ...... we are indeed talking about the legendary circuit ,Spa Francorchamps, that this time again hosted the Spa Classic 2019. Spa Francorchamps was created in 1921, and with Silverstone, Monaco and Monza, it is one of the most emblematic circuits in the Formula 1 World Championship. The original layout was abandoned in 1978 as it was judged to be too dangerous.
Flat out or not? That’s the question drivers ask themselves when they tackle the terrifying Raidillon at Eau Rouge. Whether at the wheel of a ground-effect prototype of the 1990s or a grand touring car with treaded tyres from the 1960s, a huge challenge awaits them when they climb the 17% incline!
Spa-Francorchamps and Group C were made for each other! At the time the 500 or 1000-km race was one not to be missed won successively by Porsche, Lancia, Jaguar, Sauber Mercedes. At Spa Classic, Belgian driver, Nicolas d’Ieteren, followed in the footsteps of Thierry Boutsen and Jacky Ickx.
Endurance Racing Legends is the latest Peter Auto grid. It is the favourite of young spectators who love “instagramming” the Dodge Viper GTS-Rs, Aston Martin DBR-1s and the Panoz Esperante GTR-1. The latter is the favourite of Jarrah Venables, co-organiser of the series.
With 27 cars on the track – Aston Martin DB2s, Bizzarrini 5300 GTs, Ferrari 250 GT Belinettas, Porsche RS 61 Spyders –The Greatest's Trophy combines quantity and rarity with, among other exceptional cars, the 1965 Alfa Romeo TZ 2 and the 1954 Cooper T3.
The competitors in Sixties Endurance saw big black clouds massing over the circuit. So the ambience was a bit tense at the start of this race in which 70 cars were entered with names like Austin Healey 3000, Chevrolet Corvette, E-Type Jaguar, Lister Knobbly, Lotus XV, MG B, Morgan +4, Porsche 904 GTS, Shelby Cobra, TVR Grantura, etc.
Spa Classic commemorates the “24 Heures de Francorchamps” of the great touring car era. This time two Heritage Touring Cup races were held compared to one at the other meetings including a night event on Saturday evening. A great opportunity for drivers to express their skills behind the wheel especially as rain added to the difficulty of a track that doesn’t have much lighting.
There were 59 cars on the grid for Classic Endurance racing 1 this year beating the record for the number of participants at Spa Classic. In CER 2, Philippe Lancksweert entered the big Ferrari 512 BBLM. It was built for the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but never achieved much success because of a weak gearbox.
A year after its creation here at Spa Classic, the 2,0L Cup continues to meet with increasing success, as proved by the 38 short-chassis Porsche 911s at the 2019 Spa Classic. And there’s a lot more growth to come it seems, as young drivers have joined the ranks of the only single-make series organised by Peter Auto!