"Racing is life. Anything before or after is just waiting." Steve McQueen
The Autumn Classic at Castle Combe Circuit is an annual celebration of historic motorsport that captivates audiences with its blend of nostalgic racing action and an array of iconic cars. This event has grown to become a significant fixture on the historic racing calendar, attracting notable classic cars and revered drivers.
As the engines roar to life and the smell of oil and gasoline fills the air, spectators are transported back to a bygone era of motorsport. The circuit itself is steeped in history, having hosted races since 1950, and serves as the perfect stage for the Autumn Classic.
In this Article:
Historic Motorsports at Castle Combe
Iconic Cars & Drivers
The event has seen a wide variety of classic cars take to the track, each with its unique history and pedigree. For example, visitors may have witnessed the might of an Ex Tony Crook car, which carries a prestigious racing legacy. Cars like these are not just museum pieces; they are competitive machines that battle it out on the asphalt with all the vigor of their heyday.
Historic racing models from famous marques like Aston Martin, Jaguar, MG, and Ferrari have graced the event, giving fans a chance to see legendary vehicles such as the Aston Martin DBR1, Jaguar D-Type, and Ferrari 250 GTO in action. The sight of these cars, with their classic lines and distinctive sounds, provides a sensory feast for enthusiasts.
The Autumn Classic also honours drivers who made their mark in motorsports history. Past events have reminisced about local heroes like Vince Woodman, Geoff Mabbs, Ron Fry, Steve Neal, and Brian Cutting — names that evoke memories of daring overtakes and wheel-to-wheel racing.
Race Day Experience
On race day, the atmosphere at Castle Combe is electric, with spectators lining the track, eagerly awaiting the start. The event usually includes a variety of races, often featuring different classes and eras of vehicles. This allows for a diverse display of cars, from pre-war machines to post-war sports cars and classic single-seaters.
Beyond the track action, the Autumn Classic is also known for its off-track attractions. Car clubs often bring along their prized possessions, creating an impromptu classic car show. Moreover, trade stands, live music, and food vendors add to the festival feel of the event.
Each Autumn Classic builds upon the rich tapestry of Castle Combe's racing history. Memorable moments include fierce battles for position, masterful displays of driving skill, and the camaraderie among drivers and fans alike. It's not just about winning; it's about celebrating the spirit of motorsport.
For those looking to immerse themselves in the world of historic racing, promotional materials such as official videos from past events can provide a glimpse into what makes the Autumn Classic so special. These videos capture the essence of the event — from the roar of engines to the cheers of spectators — and serve as an invitation to experience it firsthand.
When is the Autumn Classic
For 2023, the Autumn Classic was scheduled for Saturday, 23 September and featured a special celebration for the 75th anniversary of Lotus cars. This tribute to Lotus added an extra layer of excitement to the festivities, as the brand has a storied history in automotive engineering and racing.
Castle Combe Circuit's official website mentions that the 2024 edition of the Autumn Classic Historical Racing Festival will take place on Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd September 2024, and it will continue to celebrate classic race days with an impressive display of vintage cars throughout the event.
How to Get to the Autumn Classic
The Autumn Classic is hosted at the Castle Combe Circuit, a renowned racing venue located in the picturesque countryside of Wiltshire, England. The circuit itself lies 5 miles west of Chippenham on the B4039, nestled just half a mile from the village of Castle Combe. The full address for the circuit is:
Castle Combe Circuit, Castle Combe, Nr. Chippenham, Wiltshire, SN14 7EY
For those planning to attend the Autumn Classic, getting to the event is part of the adventure.
By Car: Driving to Castle Combe Circuit is straightforward. From major cities like London or Birmingham, you can take the M4 motorway. If you are coming from London, take exit 17 off the M4 and follow the A350 towards Chippenham and then the B4039 towards Castle Combe. From Birmingham, take exit 18, and follow signs towards Bath, then pick up signs for Castle Combe.
By Public Transport: If you prefer public transport, the nearest train station is Chippenham Railway Station, which has good connections from London Paddington, Bristol, and Bath. From Chippenham, you can take a taxi to the circuit, which is approximately a 15-minute ride.
By Air: For international visitors, the closest major airports are Bristol Airport and London Heathrow. From Bristol Airport, you can rent a car or take a bus to Bristol Temple Meads train station and continue by train to Chippenham. From Heathrow, you can take a coach or train to reach Chippenham.
Once you arrive at the circuit, there is ample parking available for those who drive. It is advisable to check parking arrangements and any possible fees before your visit. For detailed directions and visitor information, it's best to consult the official Castle Combe Circuit website or contact their staff directly for assistance.
In summary, the Autumn Classic at Castle Combe Circuit offers a unique opportunity to witness historic racing at its finest, with iconic cars and legendary drivers coming together to relive and celebrate motorsport's golden years.
What is The Autumn Classic at Castle Combe Race Track?
The Autumn Classic at Castle Combe Race Track is an annual motorsport event held at Castle Combe Circuit in Wiltshire, England. It showcases a variety of classic cars, historic racing, and other motorsport activities.
When is The Autumn Classic at Castle Combe Race Track?
The Autumn Classic usually takes place in September or October. However, it's always best to check the official Castle Combe Race Track website for the most up-to-date information on event dates.
How can I buy tickets for The Autumn Classic?
Tickets for The Autumn Classic can be purchased online through the official Castle Combe Race Track website. They are typically available in advance, and sometimes there are options for on-the-day ticket purchases as well.
What can I expect to see at The Autumn Classic?
At The Autumn Classic, you can expect to see a wide variety of classic cars and historic racing vehicles on the track. There are usually multiple races and demonstrations throughout the day, showcasing different eras and categories of motorsport.
Are there any restrictions on bringing children to The Autumn Classic?
Children are welcome to attend The Autumn Classic, but it's important to note that certain areas may have age restrictions for safety reasons. Additionally, children under a certain age may be required to have a ticket or be accompanied by an adult. Check the event's guidelines for specific details.
Can I bring my own classic car to The Autumn Classic?
Yes, The Autumn Classic often has designated areas where classic car owners can display their vehicles. However, it's generally recommended to contact the event organizers in advance to inquire about registration and any specific requirements or restrictions.
Is there parking available at Castle Combe Race Track during The Autumn Classic?
Yes, there is parking available at Castle Combe Race Track during The Autumn Classic. However, it's advisable to arrive early as the event can attract a large number of visitors, and parking spaces may be limited.
Can I bring my own food and drinks to The Autumn Classic?
Yes, you are usually allowed to bring your own food and drinks to The Autumn Classic. However, there are often food vendors and refreshment stands available on-site offering a range of options.
Are there any nearby accommodation options for visitors of The Autumn Classic?
There are several accommodation options available near Castle Combe Race Track, including hotels, bed and breakfasts, and self-catering accommodations. It's best to check the official Castle Combe Race Track website or consider local tourism websites for a list of recommended places to stay.
Is there disabled access at The Autumn Classic?
Yes, Castle Combe Race Track aims to provide accessible facilities for disabled visitors during The Autumn Classic. This includes designated parking areas, accessible toilets, and viewing areas. It's advisable to contact the event organizers in advance to arrange any specific requirements or to seek further information.