7 October 2011

Race series will celebrate MGB's 50th anniversary

HRDC to kick off 30-minute, single-driver MGB races at Castle Combe on 9 April 2012

The Historic Racing Drivers Club will present a series of races in 2012 to celebrate 50 years of the MGB as a competition car, Colin Wilson reports.

After an approach by Barry Sidery-Smith — the acknowledged “Godfather” of MGB racing in the UK — the HRDC will host a collective of 30-minute, single-driver races for FIA-Appendix K-type historic MGB cars, with an invitation class for historically interesting MGB-derived race cars, such as the WSM MGB and the Jacques Coune-built MGB Berlinette.

HRDC founder and race director Julius Thurgood was thrilled to help stage the events. “’Sideways’ got me into racing in the first place” he said. “I bought the right car to start with — the ex-Neville Marriner Prodsport MGB, which I ran successfully in the first Willhire 24-Hours some 30-odd years ago. Like so many would-be competitors that Barry has helped and mentored over the years, Barry took me under his wing and introduced me to circuits such as Spa, Nurburgring, Zandvoort and Chimay.”

“I owe Barry a great debt of gratitude for that great start in motorsport,” Thurgood continued. “Helping Barry to properly celebrate 50 years of the MGB in racing is a fabulous way to say 'Thank You' to a man whose generosity of spirit has helped so many enjoy this great sport."

The inaugural race for the HRDC "MGB50" will take place at Castle Combe on 9 April 2012, at the HRDC “Historica” race day in association with the Castle Combe Racing Club.

Barry Sidery-Smith — who started racing MGBs at an International level in 1965 — will, of course, be entered in his famous ex-works Le Mans MGB “DRX255C,” which will be supported by many of the ex-works and works-associated MGB racers. Applications to race in HRDC "MGB50" can be made via the HRDC website at www.hrdc.eu.

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