Autosport International Show 2018 – Photo Gallery

With the late announcement that BriSCA F1 would be taking part in the Live Action Arena, the number of stock car fans visiting this year’s Autosport Show was probably down on previous events and, although there was no official BriSCA representation in the Oval Racing section, there were a number of cars on display from F1s and V8 Hotstox to a myriad of other oval and grass-track based machinery to keep the interest ticking over during the closed season.

Cars on track in the Live Action Arena

Number One, if you will forgive the pun, on most fans list of priorities was the superb recreation of the Stuart Smith (391) “Bread Tray” car from the workshops of Bradford-based Land Rover experts Simmonites and Team Smith Motorsports. Resplendent in Hertz colours, the car has been built as a tribute to the late multi-champion and to raise dough (sorry) for the British Heart Foundation. This car is not intended for serious heritage racing though, more an exhibition and display model with the occasional outing at race meetings.

Bobby Griffin (166) had two cars at the show, one on display stage racing though, more an exhibition and display model with the occasional outing at DK Technology at the show, one on display with some very clever paintwork and his 2017 car doing service in the Live Action arena. There was also a new (or is it just completely rebuilt?) Newson car for Richard Dickerson (443) and the old Billy-Tom O’Connor (316) car from way back when (2009, maybe), completely rebuilt in a very short space of time and beautifully finished off. Numbered 526 with the name “Finn Sargent” on the wing, it looks like we could have both Sarge and the Flying Finn on track in 2018.

Finn Sargent: one to watch in 2018?

Not strictly F1 I know but there were also V8 Hotstox on display in the shape of world champion Adam Joyce (1), Lucy Olerenshaw (245) and a new, shared car bearing the names of Grant Leather (146) and Tom Storry (530) – any relation to Michael Storry (377/30) and the late Wally Storry (77) I wonder.

Over in the Live Action arena, each F1 demonstration event was preceded by a race for the F1 Heritage boys, with the 100, 135, 252, 304 and 515 cars looking and sounding good. The F1 proper races included Scriven (12), Newson (16), Yarrow (22), Kyle Gray (124), Griffin (166) Gibson (249), Sargent (326), Jake Harrhy (345) and Riley (422). Joff Gibson’s car was displayed under a BSCDA awning in the paddock and looked brand new, but Joff explained it was his old car rebuilt. After a couple of years racing under the Williams-Maynard colours he thought he ought to have his own paint job on it! He has two good cars for 2018 out and is hoping to make it into the top twelve for the Shootout later in the season.

Of interest to NASCAR fans was the inclusion of Bobby Labonte, former Winston Cup series champion, in the Live Action show. The cars of Austin Dillon (#3) and Kyle Busch (#18) had been shipped over from the USA and Bobby put in a few cautious laps on the tricky NEC tarmac. On a track even smaller than Martinsville I doubt he even got out of first gear but it was great to see him there and taking the time to sign autographs in the paddock. Pity he couldn’t have had a thrash in an F1 and a shame the Live Action organisers didn’t spell his name correctly on the big screen!

Words: Mick Jenkins
Photos: Dave Bastock

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