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Silverstone: 50 Years of Formula One

14th July 14
silverstone-at-50

It’s been a week now since Lewis Hamilton crossed the finish line at Silverstone with 30.1 seconds to spare to show Britain that we can win a sport this summer. With Mark Cavendish out of the Tour De France, Andy Murray knocked out of Wimbledon and England out of the world cup the need to celebrate about something was getting a little tense. And what an occasion he chose to do it on.

The 2014 UK round of the F1 calendar at the world renowned Silverstone circuit wasn’t like any other, but a celebration of the 50 years that the track had hosted the world’s most premier motorsport race – and boy did it live up to expectations.

Whilst those at home watching the television only got to witness the glory of the home side crossing the line first, as well as a tense and dramatic battle of lap times between Ricciardo and Button (who finished 3rd and 4th respectively) those who could make it to the venue in person – well they got something particularly special.

With the day’s events starting with the GP2 and 3 just before the Porsche Clubcars got to lay down some rubber for the big boys, fans were all ready and warmed up for some of the days more unique events. To celebrate the 50th anniversary visually, Silverstone’s organisers had a display of cars through the ages. From the very first to the most recent of cars, this impressive display of Formula One cars would have probably bankrupt Richard Branson! And if that wasn’t enough, they even let them out onto the track.

With the classic cars leading the new, a trail of one of the most impressive collections of Formula One cars cruised – and in some cases raced one another – around the 5.89km track as last years Red Bull put on an earsplitting display of stopping/starting to impress the crowds but stay behind the comparatively snail pace the rest of the cars were displaying.

And what better way to round up an opening display before the day’s main event than to borrow the Red Arrows for a display. Flying over from the Waddington Air Show, the Red Arrows put on a show as good as ever as they flew round the track at speeds up to 300mph, looping and dodging one another with their distinctive streams of coloured smoke colouring the skies.

As they left to go and give another display to the people waiting back at Waddington the day’s main event was underway. With the race red flagged on the first lap after a crash between Massa and Raikkonen, it took just under an hour to fix the safety barriers and re-start the race. With Hamilton already moved up into fourth, the chance of a home victory was far closer in sight and after a gearbox issue caused the pole sitter of Rosberg to retire, there was nothing that could stop him from giving the 120,000 people who had turned up what they wanted.

Tell you what, role on the next 50 years!

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