Wednesday, 27 July 2022 14:36
Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort 15-17 July 2022Written by Guus Docen
The Historic Grand Prix at Zandvoort held this year can be considered as the 10th edition as the event from last year had to be completely changed because of Covid and also the event’s name was changed into Zandvoort Race Classics and no visitors were allowed. This year the original name was back and spectators were welcomed again at circuit Zandvoort.
- Most important races of this weekend were the five race series from the Masters Historic Racing. Masters Historic Racing is by far the major British organizer of race series. From the start of the Historic Grand Prix in 2012 the Masters Race series were the main attraction of the event. Also this year they were present with the Masters Racing Legends, formula One cars from 1966 through to 1985 with mainly the 8-cylinder 3 litre Cosworth DFV engine as the drive unit. Sixteen F1 cars were on the grid from which the Tyrrell P-34 six-wheeler got the most attention from the visitors and photographers. Other Masters race series were the Endurance Legends with more recent Le Mans cars from 1995 through 2016, the Sports Car Legends (Le Mans-style) sports cars and Group 4 period cars from 1962 up to 1974, the Pre-66 Touring Cars Series (with a disappointing 10 entries) and finally the Masters Gentlemen Drivers which turned out to be an interesting 90-minutes race on Sunday with 18 entries.
- This year the FIA Historic Formula 3 European Cup returned to Zandvoort again with seventeen cars. There were two categories, category 1 for cars built from 1971 up to 1978 and category 2 for cars built from 1979 up to 1984.
- What would be the Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort without the participation of the Historic Grand Prix Cars Association ? Yes of course they came to Zandvoort ! Thirty nine cars (Coopers T45/T53, Lotus 18/21/24, Brabhams, Cooper Bristols etc) were entered in two very exciting races.
- The Dutch classic racing club HARC were responsible for the two largest racing grids this weekend. The Hankook Dutch National Championship, a championship for touring cars and Coupés from the 1982 up to 1990, 45 cars entered the two races. The other race series the RECO NK GTTC (a championship for touring cars and GTs from 1966 to 1981) saw 35 entries from which the Ferrari 512 BB LM was a real head turner.
- There were several demonstration runs during this event of which the BMW and Porsche demos were less interesting as there were just a few cars on the tarmac and the types showed could also be seen on the parking terrains around the track. The demo of the 1958-1962 Le Mans cars was more interesting and the regularity run of the Dutch Vintage Sports Car Club showed some very nice pre-war cars like Bugattis, Alvis, MGs and Alfa Romeos. On Saturday there was a parade of the Dutch Jaguar Club and DAF club.
- The first edition of the Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort was held in 2012. The second edition in 2013 attracted 31,500 visitors. The fourth edition in 2016 was the most succesful edition with more than 50,000 visitors ! The past two years have been tough for organizing an historic racing event but will it be possible to get these great starting fields and nice atmosphere from the fourth edition back again at Zandvoort in 2023 ? An important point of improvement for the organization are the spots from where the visitors can see the action on the track. The popular grandstand at turn 11 was not accessible this year. Several factors will influence the interest of the European historic racing clubs/series to attend the circuit of Zandvoort next year again. The number of historic racing events has grown considerably over the last eight years and the decision by the European historic racing clubs/series to commit itself to a certain event abroad in 2023 will be influenced by a forthcoming economic recession resulting in high fuel costs and travel costs. The UK racing drivers have the possibility to participate in their own country with the great events like the Donington Historic Festival, Silverstone Classic, Goodwood Revival and the Oulton Park Historic Gold Cup.
- There are still opportunities to make the 2023 Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort a great event again ! The Lurani Trophy, the race series of the German Fahrergemeinschaft Historischer Rennsport (FHR) or the race series Battle of the Dwarfs just to name a few will attract the real classic racing enthusiasts. Also the stands of car clubs, marque specialists, spare parts, accessories and models wil contribute to an atmosphere where historic car enthusiasts enjoy themselves and will discover the things they are passionate about. Pictures by Guus Docen and Trevor Noble
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