Saturday, January 10, 2009

Donnington Grand Prix Exhibition

As some of you may have noticed, I like my motor sports. I especially like Formula 1 and have been watching it for as long as I can remember. The first Grand Prix I went to was in Portugal in 1992 and I have watched every race since.

After an exciting season last year we are now in the off season and I am getting F1 withdrawl. What can you do to fix this? Visit the Grand Prix exhibition at Donnington is what!

I am so lucky in that Victoria also loves Formula 1. This means I have no problems watching the qualifying and the races on TV, I never have any problems finding someone to go to the races with and I never have problems taking the whole family to a museum of old Grand Prix cars. :-)

As I was still off work for Christmas this week but everyone else was back at work or school we decided that this was a great time to visit Donnington and we were right. We were practically the only people there.

The exhibition is amazing. They have racing cars from 1903 up until the present day. They are not all but are mostly Formula 1 cars and there are some real classics. The Lotus Climax 18 that Sterling Moss won the 1961 Grand Prix in, the Lotus 92 driven by Nigel Mansell in 1983 (possibly the coolest F1 car ever) and the Tyrrell P34 with it's 6 wheel design. The best part though is the Mclaren Hall. Here we have a large collection of Mclaren F1 cars from the 70's up to 2001, including cars driven by James Hunt, John Watson, Alain Prost and about 6 cars driven by Ayrton Senna. For any F1 fan this is an amazing collection.

Victoria and I both really enjoyed the exhibition. It took about 1 hour 45 minutes to get round it all and the kids were getting a bit bored but we loved it. :-) If you are an F1 fan get yourself down there. It is also only £14 for us all to get in which these days is a bargain.

As I have said before, Donnington is to host the 2010 British Grand Prix. I knew that they needed to work on the circuit before this could happen but having been there I can see how much work they have to do. When you get to Silverstone it looks like a big racing circuit. There are massive permanent grandstands and proper visitor access facilities etc. Donnington has a shed with a guard in it.

When you drive to Silverstone there is a specially built 3 lane each way A road and you still get stuck in huge amounts of traffic if you don't set off early enough. To get to Donnington it is a single lane each way road which they share with East Midlands airport.

They really have their work cut out to make 2010 happen.

Pictures of the exhibition are here.

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