Spa-Classic: a new take on the past!

The Peter Auto teams achieved a remarkable feat at the 8th staging of Spa-Classic by assembling 325 racing cars and 1.200 collector cars with, as a bonus, some superb newcomers.

The success of an event held on a circuit is partly based on the organiser’s capacity to inject fresh blood into the spectacle on offer. This is obvious when it comes to races for modern cars, but becomes a real challenge in the domain of historic events where, by definition, the grids are not naturally renewed by the appearance of new models. Even so every year Peter Auto manages to spring a surprise. An example: on Friday an immaculate white Porsche 962 appeared in the Group C Racing paddock to the amazement of specialists. And for good reason: this car (chassis NO/962-174) sold by the factory in 1991 had never been raced! It took more than a quarter of a century to rectify this anomaly! 

Two new fields

While the competition department knows how to find new models, it can also reinvent the way it perceives historic racing. Thus, the Spa-Classic meeting was the theatre of the maiden event for the new 2.0-Litres Cup, Peter Auto’s first single-make series. Almost 40 drivers in pre-1966 Porsche 911s did battle on a level playing field providing the spectators with some ding-dong battles! And there was more. Spa-Classic also inaugurated the rapprochement between Peter Auto and the promoters of Global Endurance Legends who organise outings for a field comprising GTs and prototypes from the 1990s-2000s. It provided visitors with the opportunity to see, among others, a marvellous Bentley EXP Speed 8 in action identical to the car that won the Le Mans 24 Hours in 2003. Note that this grid will again add excitement to the Grand Prix de l’Age d’Or in three weeks and then to Le Mans Classic at which more than 70 cars are expected: these will include Audi R8 LMPs, Bentley Speed 8s, Ferrari F40 LMs, McLaren F1 GTRs, Panoz Esperante GTR-1s, Porsche 911 GT1s, etc.

Clubs and activities

In addition to the on-track action provided by the eight grids, spectators could leave the circuit for a few minutes – or a few hours – to feast their eyes on the 1.200 collector cars on display. Among them were iconic and rare vehicles like one of the 455 BMW M1s produced, which had only 3.000 km on the clock, an almost unbelievable figure for a car that’s celebrating its 40th anniversary this year! On Sunday at midday this beautiful exhibition of motor car history was joined by the 205 crews in the Youngtimers Rally who finished their journey at Spa with a parade on the Ardennes roller-coaster. In the Village, the crowd had their fill of excitement with the Wall of Death, a motorbike show. Other activities like Racing Bug, Neo Retro and the exhibitors, scale models, ready-to-wear, books, etc. provided a source of delight for many members of the public.

Upcoming events

Once again this event has been a resounding success so Patrick Peter invites you to attend the 9th staging of Spa-Classic in the spring of 2019. In the meantime, the entrants in the Peter Auto grids will meet up again in three weeks at the Grand Prix de l’Age d’Or on the Dijon-Prenois circuit. And on 6-7-8 July, it will be the turn of the major event for historic races – Le Mans Classic !