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10 stuff you didn’t find out about Silverstone F1 circuit

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Former airfield

Everybody is aware of Silverstone is a former airfield – however do you know it was dwelling to the legendary Wellington bomber? The positioning opened in 1943 throughout WWII with 5 giant hangars, three intersecting runways and perimeter monitor. It was a coaching base for the No 17 Operational Coaching Unit however when that shut in 1947, it was then transformed right into a racetrack by the RAC in simply two months and held its first Grand Prix in 1948. The unique runways nonetheless minimize by the centre of the circuit.

The primary F1 race ever

It’s additionally pretty well-known that he first F1 race was held at Silverstone – however do you know that outdoors the UK it was formally titled the Grand Prix d’Europe. The typical age of the drivers was 39 and the sphere included a Thai Prince, a Swiss baron and a London-born Belgian jazz singer named Johnny Claes, who certified final and completed eleventh.

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Giuseppe Farina, Alfa Romeo 158, Luigi Fagioli, Alfa Romeo 158

Giuseppe Farina, Alfa Romeo 158, Luigi Fagioli, Alfa Romeo 158

Photograph by: Motorsport Images

Corners of saints and monks

The monitor has eight left turns and ten proper, and there are a number of fascinating names. Two corners are named after the Luffield Priory, which housed Benedictine monks between 1116 and the late sixteenth century, whereas Becketts and Chapel are named in honour of medieval Saint Thomas A’Becket, whose chapel stood close by. The third nook in that part is called after close by Maggots Moor and is the quickest of all, with drivers experiencing lateral G-forces of 4.5 at greater than 180mph.

Sharing the spoils

Silverstone has not at all times been dwelling of the British Grand Prix – it was shared with Aintree between 1955 and 1962 and Manufacturers Hatch between 1963 and 1986. It was solely in 1987 that it turned venue of alternative and shall be so for a minimum of 10 extra years.

So good they did it twice

In 2020, when Covid-19 decimated the F1 calendar, Silverstone hosted back-to-back rounds – the British Grand Prix on July 26 and, per week later, the seventieth Anniversary Grand Prix to commemorate F1’s landmark on August 2. They ran behind closed doorways and the race solely occurred because of the last-minute waiving of lockdown restrictions.

Hare-y moments

The open farmland round Silverstone is dwelling to plenty of fast-moving hares however towards F1 vehicles they haven’t at all times fared effectively. Within the first race, Briton Reg Parnell hit one in his Alfa Romeo and in 2002 Allan McNish did the identical in his Toyota.

First prize

The winner of Silverstone’s first F1 race, Giuseppe Farina, claimed a prize of £500 – equal to round £21,500 at present – however now the prize cash is zero! These days, groups get a share of the overall prize cash based mostly on Championship positions on the finish of the season, however particular person Grand Prix winners solely get a trophy – and recognition.


Kevin Magnussen, Haas VF-23

Kevin Magnussen, Haas VF-23

Photograph by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

Two counties

The circuit has an id disaster in terms of figuring out precisely the place it’s – as a result of it sits throughout an English county boundary – in order the vehicles drive round, they’re switching from one county to a different. The part between Becketts and Abbey, together with the pits and start-finish straight, is in Buckinghamshire, whereas from Farm by to Maggotts is in Northamptonshire.

Altering tracks

The monitor has had six completely different configurations through the years. Its high-speed format was retained – except for the addition of a chicane at Woodcote – till 1991, when Maggotts, Becketts and Chapel turned an exhilarating swerving sequence, Vale was added between Stowe and Membership and Priory, a gradual ‘stadium’ part was added. In 2010, the stadium turned the Loop and at last in 2011, the start-finish straight between Woodcote-Copse moved places (and counties – see earlier reference) to the brand new ‘Wing’ pit complicated on the Hamilton Straight.

Ten dwelling heroes

Ten completely different British drivers have received an F1 race at Silverstone. The primary was Peter Collins in 1958 then Jim Clark took three (63, 65, 67), Jackie Stewart two (69, 71) and James Hunt (77) and John Watson (81) taking one every. Nigel Mansell had a superb run of success (87, 91, 92) with Damon Hill (94), Johnny Herbert (95) and David Coulthard (99) profitable one every earlier than Lewis Hamilton started an astonishing haul of eight victories (2008, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21).

And now for 2024…

The British Grand Prix returns to Silvertone from fifth July – seventh and MoneyGram is giving one fortunate fan and their visitor the possibility to absorb the enduring Silverstone environment this yr as a part of the MoneyGram Silverstone Dream Weekend competitors. With VIP hospitality, spherical journey journey, lodging, MoneyGram Haas F1 Team merchandise and extra obtainable to the winner, it’s a actually unimaginable bundle. To enter, simply reply ‘What drives your goals?’ at dreams.moneygram.com.

The Silverstone Dream Weekend with MoneyGram Haas F1 Workforce competitors is for residents of the UK solely. Entrants should be of majority age. The competitors opens on Could 26, 2024 and closes on June 23, 2024. The prize draw shall be made on June 26, 2024 and the winner shall be notified on June 27, 2024

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