The “Return to Power” is a new series for 3 litre Formula 1 cars from 1966 to 1971 and is set to kick off by taking centre stage at Brands Hatch on May 26/27 with the “Historic Race of Champions”.
The race is being promoted by historic racers Andrew Smith, Joe Twyman and Roger Wills together with Masters Historic Racing. It will provide an opportunity for owners of earlier F1 cars from this highly evocative era to race competitively, away from the later winged and ground-effect cars. The Historic Race of Champions will be run at the Masters Historic Festival at Brands Hatch, just two weeks after the Monaco Historic Grand Prix. Ace preparation company Hall & Hall is sponsoring the race and will add further weight since it has several customers with eligible cars.Two races will be run for the cars over the weekend and Joe Twyman is confident of a healthy entry. “We are aiming for 20 cars, maybe more. The event will be two weeks after Monaco meaning that many cars will be race-ready and in Europe already and we want to gauge the competitor response before looking at more races.”
Andrew Smith and Roger Wills are both set to race their March 701s, Smith’s car being the ex-Jackie Stewart Tyrrell March that won the Daily Mail Race of Champions in 1970, and Wills’ being the ex-Chris Amon works car that won the Daily Express International Trophy in the same year.
“We want to provide a platform for these cars to race competitively on their own,” stresses Twyman. “Apart from Monaco every two years, there is no other race for this era of car and we want to change that.”
The race will run under Masters regulations with DFV-engined cars restricted to 10,000 rpm and tyres will be cut slicks. Due to the sponsorship provided by Hall & Hall the entry fees will be very competitive.
Plans are also underway to recreate the traditional award for pole position: 100 bottles of champagne to the driver who sets the fastest lap time in qualifying.
“We really want this to be a success,” says Masters Series boss Ron Maydon. “We are working hard to encourage owners of these cars to take to the track and we want this to be the start of something big.”