- CarFest North showcases more great cars than ever before
- New high-octane show with supercars and grand prix-winners
- Exciting new track being prepared in the grounds of Bolesworth
- Friday premiere offers last chance to buy 2016 CarFest tickets
CarFest is gearing up for its most exciting summer ever, with an all-new rousing track show revving up right at the heart of two magical weekends of utterly fabulous family entertainment. It all blasts off with CarFest North (29-31 July) – now at Bolesworth in Cheshire – and then roars onto CarFest South (26-28 August), which remains at its spiritual home of Laverstoke Park Farm in Hampshire.
Since being dreamt up by Radio 2 Breakfast Show host Chris Evans in 2012, the award-winning events staged to-date have raised in excess of a staggering £6m for BBC Children in Need. Moreover, they’ve richly entertained more than 300,000 festival-goers of all ages with a unique and wonderfully eclectic mix of music, cars and fun. And 2016 will be no different – just even bigger and better than ever before!
Among the great line-up of chart-toppers performing in the evenings this year are Bryan Adams, Faithless, Travis, The Corrs, Will Young, Status Quo, Foxes, James Morrison, Richard Ashcroft, Rick Astley, Ronan Keating and the Stereophonics.
The amazing array of cars is every bit as impressive, with something for everyone from hardcore petrol-heads to those who prefer the more classic models. The spectacular show of speed, style and stunts will boast a completely new format – replacing the ‘magnificent sevens’ of previous years – and is guaranteed to make absolutely everyone stop, look and listen.
In readiness for this extraordinary influx of horsepower, the parkland roads around Bolesworth Castle are being upgraded with 1,000 tonnes of asphalt surface being laid to ensure everything is good to go, go, go.
Chris Evans’ Famous Five
As tradition dictates, every amazing Track Sprint show kicks off with a mouthwatering selection of fabulous machines from the collection of its founder, Chris Evans. The Radio 2 Breakfast Show host has a huge passion for cars and has owned some extremely enviable machines – those wowing the crowds at CarFest North include the ever-popular movie star Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the astonishing LaFerrari, the Prancing Horse’s first hybrid supercar which comes with 210+mph performance and an equally impressive price tag of more than a million pounds.
CarFest visitors will not only get to see and hear some of the world’s finest four-wheeled creations, they will also have the chance to take an unforgettable passenger ride in a number of them thanks to The Sporting Bears Motor Club, a group of fund-raising classic and sports car enthusiasts. At CarFest every Dream Ride with the ‘Bears’, as they’re affectionately known, raises money for BBC Children in Need. Through the public’s generosity, last year a whopping £111,300 was generated – a total that could be broken this year as there are some even more tempting cars on offer. Who could resist a blast in an Aston Martin Vantage, Dodge Viper, Ferrari California, McLaren 675 LT Spyder or even a VW Microbus?
The Time Tunnel
New for this summer, the Time Tunnel will take CarFest visitors through a unique timeline display of 40 standout cars covering the full spectrum of automotive history, encapsulating more than a century of evolutionary progress. Flagged off with pioneers such as the Oldsmobile Curved Dash and Model T Ford dating back to the dawn of motoring, the Time Tunnel will then take enthralled spectators on a magical journey via beautiful Bugattis, tiny Topolinos, miniature Messerschmitts, classic Jaguars, opulent Bentleys and drop-dead gorgeous Ferraris right up to a glimpse of the future with the latest Tesla Model X and radical Riverside Rasa Hydrogen Fuel Cell prototype. In true CarFest spirit the experience will be informative, fun-filled and not-to-be-missed.
CarFest Motor Sport
Upping the tempo, comes a grid of true motor sport icons featuring winners from the worlds of both racing and rallying. With big V8-hearted NASCAR and Formula 5000 race cars plus a pair of mighty MG Metro 6R4s from the fearsome Group B rally era, the soundtrack will certainly be memorable. Other exceptional competition cars include Michael Schumacher’s F1 Benetton, a potent Penske IndyCar raced by Emerson Fittipaldi in period and a Mark 1 Jaguar from the dawn of saloon car racing in the late fifties.
TopGear Magazine Performance Grid
Another eye-catching new addition to CarFest this year is the TopGear Magazine Performance Grid. This will bring show-goers some of the hottest metal on the planet, including Aston Martin’s most extreme V8 ever – the Vantage GT8 – the sublime McLaren 675LT, the insane Ariel Nomad and many more. Visitors can experience the Performance Grid getting up close to these incredible machines, before watching them being unleashed on the CarFest track.
Living up to its title, the Extreme section is another exciting new arrival on the 2016 Track Sprint bill. Expect some bonkers fiery hot-rods, built with only horsepower in mind. These classically-styled ground-tremblers include a mind-boggling 1,000bhp 1915 Model T, a 1962 Ford Consul Street Racer plus a 1941 Willys Coupe Hot Road Coupe. Better not to ask! The no-limits Extreme show also stars one of the country’s leading drift teams – Team Japspeed – who will be shredding tyres and burning rubber with their incredible sideways driving skills.
Red Bull Racing
All the adrenaline-charged Track Sprint shows will reach a thrilling finale. With the stage cleared, the scene will be set for some Formula One fireworks from Red Bull Racing’s astonishing 2011 title winning RB7. Ensuring crowds experience a modern-day F1 projectile in all its spine-chilling splendour, former Toro Rosso GP driver Sebastien Buemi will be in the hot seat over the weekend (Saturday & Sunday) at both CarFests.
While the Red Bull Racing display will bring the curtain down on each of the track shows, there’s plenty more for car enthusiasts to savour at CarFest. A large number of automotive brands will be displaying their latest models and brand favourites throughout both events making it the perfect place to look for that new car or motorcycle this summer with some being even more actively involved.
Peugeot has always been a big supporter of BBC Children in Need and CarFest and, to-date, has raised more than £1m via some clever initiatives such as its ‘Get Sudsey with Pudsey’ scheme. ‘The Lion’ will be well-represented at both Bolesworth and Laverstoke again this year.
Honda also returns this year with its own selection of interactive experiences including My First Honda Licence, ATV Gymkhanas and Lawnmower challenges as well as being supporter of the main stage for the first time. What’s more, Jaguar is bringing its new ‘F-Pace Experience’ with live 4×4 demos, while BMW is joining CarFest for the first time to celebrate its centenary.
For those wanting a dash of nostalgia, car clubs will be turning back the clock with special displays in the Vintage Village where the streets will be lined with perfectly-presented cars appropriate to each era, from meticulously-prepared Morgans to pristine Porsches.
There’s a world-first in the Kids Zone, too, where the world’s greatest secret agent, Danger Mouse, will be revealing his latest amazing multi-purpose vehicle, the incredible Mark IV.
With so much for those of all ages to see and do, it’s no surprise that CarFest tickets have, once again, been in huge demand. For the fifth year on the trot, Laverstoke is a complete sell-out and, similarly, all weekend and camping tickets for Bolesworth Castle were snapped up almost as soon as sales commenced.
A few remaining tickets for Friday at CarFest North are still available, but these too are selling fast. The opening day will not only provide visitors with the chance to attend the premiere of the new Track Sprint show, but also to enjoy some truly great live music performances from chart-toppers including Travis, Texas, Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott, Kim Wilde, ABC and Faithless.
Friday Adult admission is priced at just £64, while entry for children aged between six and 16 is priced at £12. Tickets are available from the official www.bbc.co.uk/pudsey website, with a minimum of 25 per cent of the ticket price going directly to BBC Children in Need.
All the latest CarFest news can be found on the festival’s official website www.carfest.org, Twitter and Facebook platforms.