Thousands of MG owners from all over the world converged on Northamptonshire for the biggest event in the MG calendar, the MG Car Club Silverstone International Festival.
Enthusiasts travelled from as far afield as Japan, the USA, South Africa and New Zealand, while TC owner Mike Sheryll drove his car to Silverstone – from Australia!
The MGCC celebrated a number of model anniversaries, for the M-type Midget (75th anniversary), the K3 Midget (70th), the T-series (40th) and the MGB V8 (25th). The T-series line-up was particularly impressive: a 1930s ‘Cream Cracker’ works trial car was wonderfully muddy.
On display in the race paddock was a group of ‘specials’ powered by MG XPAG engines, including a Lotus Nine, Chris Pamplin’s 1951 Dargue MG and organiser Keith Hodder’s 1955 Parson MG.
Opinions varied, almost inevitably, about the pickings amongst the specialist and autojumble stands, but one of the highlights of the specialists area was the MGC GTS for sale from Brown & Gammons. This was not one of the works race cars, but a genuine lightweight body that was built up to works specification in 1971, by John Chatham – now better known as a big Healey specialist. If you didn’t have the £47,500 asking price to hand, there was plenty to be found at the other end of the scale with restorable MGBs and Midgets on offer at a few hundred pounds.
As if that wasn’t enough more than 500 cars were involved in race action out on the track, in everything from pre-war Midgets to the latest MG ZR. Modern machinery was well represented all over Silverstone, with the MG ‘X Power’ livery much in evidence – proving that enthusiasm for MGs ancient and modern is as strong as ever.