The 2013 Cholmondeley Pageant of Power, the UK’s biggest celebration of power and speed, opens its gates today, promising to be the most entertaining yet with more cars, bikes, planes, marine action and helicopters than ever before.
The Pageant this year celebrates birthdays for two iconic brands. Aston Martin marks its centenary year with a display of more than 50 classic and modern models – including their Centenary Edition Vanquish, a DB4 GT and a DBR4, an ultra rare single-seater car from the brand’s time as a Formula One race outfit. A one-off for the Pageant in 2013, a special Aston Martin Centenary race category sees a number of cars take to the circuit throughout this weekend.
Joining the British marque is Lamborghini, celebrating its 50th birthday this year with a display of vehicles illustrating the evolution of the legendary Italian supercar manufacturer. Lamborghini is showcasing some of its most famous and rarest models, including an exclusive 25th Anniversary Lamborghini Countach and the all-new 700hp Aventador LP700-4 Roadster – the car’s very first public appearance in the UK.
Alongside some of the fastest cars in the world, Richard Noble, former land speed record holder is bringing his full-scale replica of the 1,000 mph Bloodhound Supersonic car.
The 2013 event plays host to numerous other greats, too, as the latest models from illustrious marques such as McLaren, Bentley and Porsche go head-to-head to claim victory in the Pageant’s timed Supercar class. It’s the classic British lightweight sports car that remains favourite to clinch the outright lap record – will it be the Ariel Atom 3.5, Radical SR8 RX, or the BAC Mono that claims the honours? Last year, it was the giant-slaying Caterham SP/300.R that ruffled a few feathers in its class having set a new fastest lap record around the 1.2-mile circuit, in just 61.89 seconds.
A number of ultra-exclusive hypercars are taking to the track for timed runs, and the Pageant will offer a rare opportunity this year for the British public to see the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport and Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse – the two fastest road cars in the world today – as well as the Lexus LFA.
Other historically important cars to have graced the international racing scene are present too, forming an inspiring 200-strong vehicle collection. Those of particular note include the ground-breaking Donington Collection W125, evoking the dominant Silver Arrows cars of the 1930s, and the 1956 Maserati 250F made famous by Juan Manuel Fangio and Sir Stirling Moss.
New Rally Village
Set to be one of the highlights of the event, the Cholmondeley Estate will echo to the resplendent sound of modern and historic rally cars for the next three days, as the latest World Rally Championship (WRC) and British Rally Championship (BRC) contenders make their event debut alongside iconic Group B machines of the 1980s. The line-up consists of an Audi Sport Quattro, Audi Quattro A1 and a Peugeot 205 T16, with ex-Peugeot works driver Kevin Furber behind the wheel.
Other notable stars lining up to compete around the demanding course from today include Elfyn Evans in his Qatar M-Sport Ford Fiesta RS WRC car, who secured first place in the FIA WRC Academy in 2012, Tom Cave, who finished second in the 2012 BRC, and reigning Class 3 Welsh National Champion Benjamyn Mckay.
Also new for 2013 is the Rally Village, where visitors can get up close with the most notorious cars from rallying history, including Colin McRae’s 1996 WRC Subaru Impreza, Mikko Hirvonen’s 2010 Monte Carlo-winning Ford Fiesta S2000 and the 1970 Ford Escort which took Hannu Mikkola to victory in the gruelling 16,000-mile London to Mexico World Cup Rally. For the first time, Francois Delecour’s Ford Escort Cosworth WRC is also on public display – the winner of four rallies between 1993 and 1994.
Bigger bike entry
Alongside a host of four-wheel stars are some of the fastest and most unusual one- and two-wheeled machinery the world has ever seen. There is a total of nearly 40 entrants, from a 1933 Rudge TT replica with an illustrious history of winning on some of the toughest road circuits, to a slightly newer, but no less remarkable, AMF Harley Davidson 350RR, raced by a number of privateers in the 350cc Grand Prix World Championship. Another 1970s favourite, the 1974 Maxton Yamaha TZ385, is being ridden at the Pageant by BBC broadcaster Andy Kershaw.
Bringing motorcycling into the 21st century is Christian Iddon and his 2005 Husaberg FS650, who finished fifth overall in the 2011 World Supersports Championship. Another Supermoto hero returning to the Pageant for his second year is Lewis Cornish and his competition KTM SMR450, 2012 British Masters Champion. A larger competitor listing than ever before will ensure there’s something for every motorcycle fan.
As ever, the Cholmondeley Pageant of Power goes beyond the realms of cars and bikes, with displays and stunts to give families and enthusiasts one of the most varied days out in the UK this year.
The Pageant hosts a packed schedule of airborne action, including a Battle of Britain Memorial flypast by venerable RAF World War planes – including the famous Lancaster and Spitfire – helicopter agility competitions and thrilling stunt-plane demonstrations.
Visitors can also book their own spot in the skies. Helicopter pleasure flights provide a remarkable bird’s-eye view of the Pageant of Power action – with unrivalled panoramas of the 1.2-mile circuit, Cholmondeley Castle and the beautiful surrounding countryside.
Joining the action-packed land and air line-up is an incredible array of waterborne machinery, including jetskis, powerboats, fly-boards and high-speed racing hovercrafts. Over the coming days, Cholmondeley Estate’s lakes play host to jaw-dropping shows from JNT – the UK’s leading freestyle jetski stunt team – as well an official round of the adrenaline-fuelled National Hovercraft Championship. The Defence Helicopter Flying School will also give a live Search and Rescue demonstration in a Bell 412 Griffin, a display only normally seen off the UK’s coasts when the worst happens at sea.
“Today sees the start of our biggest and best Pageant to date, and the action on land, water and air means there is something for everyone,” said James Hall, Event Director for the Cholmondeley Pageant of Power. “No other event in the UK comes close to bringing together so many different elements and so much varied machinery. It’s impossible to see ultra-exclusive hypercars lining up alongside hovercraft racers, historic Formula One cars, World War Two warbirds and current World Rally competitors, unless you’re a visitor to this ultimate family day out.”
Now in its sixth year, the 2013 Pageant takes place on the Cholmondeley Estate in Cheshire from 14 to 16 June, celebrating power and performance in its many forms. Adult tickets start at just £25 for the Friday Preview Day, and £35 to see all the action on Saturday or Sunday. Under-16 tickets are available from just £5 for the Friday Preview Day and £10 for Saturday and Sunday tickets.Cholmondeley Pageant of Power, Pageant of Power