As is now customary at this time of the year, BriSCA F1 stock cars start off 2018 with a bang as the glorious sound of Chevrolet V8s fill the Live Action Arena at Autosport International once again this weekend.
Autosport International is the biggest motorsport show in Europe and BriSCA F1 has become an integral feature of the live shows during the past two decades.
This year the theme for the BriSCA F1s is the transformation of the sport through the ages, from its beginnings in 1954 to the present day. On track will be the heritage cars of Roy Clarke, representing the 1950s, the 1960s Tony Neal car, Dave Mellor’s World Championship-winning car from the 1970s, Frankie Wainman Jnr’s first car representing the 1980s and Peter Falding’s car from the 1990s.
Modern day BriSCA F1 is represented throughout the four days by Mat Newson, Ben Riley, Paul Hines, Joff Gibson, Will Yarrow, Michael Scriven, Bobby Griffin, Mark Sergeant and Nigel Harrhy.
But perhaps the highlight of the show will be the unveiling of the Stuart Smith Hertz Tribute car, built by Mark Calzoni and Stuart Smith Jnr.
“Geoff Coleman and I did the fabricating, but Mark has done everything else,” said Smith Jnr. “When we delivered it to him, we just gave it to him as an old stock car really, a bit of an old weapon, using old parts. And Mark has just refined everything.
“I went up to see the car when Mark finished it off and I have got to say I have never known anyone to put such infinite detail into a car like this. It is incredible. So I really don’t want to scratch it!
The car will be a feature in the Live Action Arena on Thursday and Friday – the two trade and press days – and Smith Jnr and brother Andy will share the driving.
The car, however, is something completely alien to what both Smith brothers are used to driving. The set-up will bear no relation to how a modern day stock car is prepared for action.
“It will be the first time I have driven it and the first time it has gone anywhere,” said Smith Jnr. “So I could end up putting it in the wall! Andrew text me the other day and said “What tyre pressures should I run?
“And I texted back and said “No idea. Put 50lb in!” And I then said what my dad always used to say. “Put 10 inches of stagger on and you’ll be alright!””
After the car graces to indoor track it will be then have pride of place on a stand in the Oval Racing Area in Hall 10 for everyone who visits the NEC over the weekend to enjoy.
BriSCA F1 is supporting the British Heart Foundation during the four-day show, which is open 9.00am to 6.00pm on each of the four days.
Tribute car photos courtesy of Paul Greenwood