Portuguese race meet is relaunched as a major festival

| 27 Mar 2012

The annual historic racing weekend at the Algarve International Autodrome is being relaunched in 2012 as a major European event called the Algarve Classic Festival.

The first Algarve Classic Festival from 18-21 October will include the Stirling Moss Trophy for pre-’61 sports cars and sports-racers, the Motor Racing Legends Pre-War Sports Car Series, the JD Classics Challenge for Touring Cars from 1966-'85, the U2TC for under-2-litre Touring Cars, the '1000km' for pre-’72 sports-racing, Touring and GT cars, and the GT & Sports Car Cup for pre-’66 GTs and pre-’63 sports cars.

Circuit Director Paulo Pinheiro said: "Since the Autodrome was completed in 2008, our annual historic motor sport event has become increasingly popular across Europe. Recently, we have heard from a small number of race organisers and racers who were concerned that the event would no longer be run every year, but this is not the case.

"We can say with certainty that the Algarve Classic Festival is a firm fixture for 2012, and will be an annual event from now on. We are very proud of our challenging, 4.7km circuit. Drivers love to tackle its steep hills and technical corners, while the stark beauty of the locality and the high chance of hot sunny weather is – I feel sure – more than a small part of the attraction for their friends and families."

Duncan Wiltshire of Motor Racing Legends, which is bringing three of the races to the event, added: "When we first came here in 2009, we weren’t sure how our racers would take to the Portuguese circuit which rises and falls a startling 106 feet and presents a technically tricky challenge to the drivers.

"Some competitors took to it straight away, while others were, at first, a bit surprised. There are blind brows and steep drops, strung together by corners with complex changes in camber and the odd tightening double apex. But by the end of that first weekend we were hearing comments along the lines of ‘It’s as good as Spa or the Brands Hatch GP circuit’ or simply ‘Bloody fantastic!’."

For more information on the Algarve International Autodrome and the new Algarve Classic Festival, click here.