One of the major names in Scottish motor sport – iconic rally driver Jimmy McRae – was guest of honour at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC) this morning (Tuesday 22 March) for the official launch of IGNITION, a brand new motoring festival destined for Glasgow this summer (5-7 August).
Supercars including a Lamborghini Huracan and Ferrari 458 Spider, and competition cars including the successful Red Bull RB6 Formula One racing car and Colin McRae’s famous Subaru Impreza rally car provided a fitting backdrop as organisers presented further plans. It was announced that the festival not only will include a special tribute to the late Colin McRae featuring several of the rally legend’s famous cars and bikes, but also that his father Jimmy, himself a five times British Rally Champion, would inaugurate the event’s bespoke Street Circuit driving Colin’s world championship winning rally car.
The Top Gear Live Stunt Team was also in action taking over one of the halls with an impressive display of precision driving, giving just a glimpse of what will be on offer in the live action zones at the event in August.
Enthusing about the upcoming festival, Jimmy McRae said: “Scotland is steeped in motor sport heritage, with champions on two, three and four wheels. It’s an exciting event for Glasgow and motoring fans north of the border. I’m looking forward to getting behind the wheel on the Street Circuit – it will really bring the event to life and give the audience a unique experience.”
Event Director Jeremy Vaughan, commented: “It’s an honour to have Jimmy on board for IGNITION. Jimmy won the British Rally Championship five times and still competes today in historic rallying - he really is a legend. Jimmy inaugurating the circuit in Colin's 555 Subaru WRC winning car will be a very special moment for the event and the city."
Further highlights planned for IGNITION include power laps by BBC Top Gear’s tame racing driver The Stig, beautiful displays of classic cars and memorabilia plus homages paid to some of the world’s finest motor sporting heroes.
Scotland’s own F1 star, David Coulthard will also take to the specially constructed Street Circuit in the Red Bull Racing RB7, giving fans a unique opportunity to see and hear a Formula One machine up close.
There will be further track action from race, rally and supercars – as well as bikes – to make 5-7 August one of the most exciting weekends on this year’s motoring calendar.
Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events, said: “As the first event of its kind to be staged in Scotland, we are delighted to be supporting IGNITION Festival of Motoring and are sure attendees are set for a thrilling experience.
“The event is expected to attract visitors from all over Scotland and even further afield, for what will be an exciting weekend of motoring action that will fully utilise the outstanding facilities in and around Glasgow’s SECC.”
Joe Aitken, Head of Major Events at Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, said: “We're really looking forward to hosting the inaugural IGNITION Festival of Motoring. The announcement of the Street Circuit is incredibly exciting as it marks a UK first for Glasgow and will put the city right at the heart of the action.
“It makes perfect sense for IGNITION to make its home in Glasgow as we're a city that's always on the move and we have a history of welcoming the world's elite supercars and drivers, having previously provided the backdrop for thrilling scenes in the Fast & Furious 6 movie as well being the starting point for the iconic Monte Carlo Rally.
“Today's announcement reinforces Glasgow's enviable reputation as a world-class destination which works with major event organisers to create show-stopping events that pack a real punch for audiences.”
Full details can be found via the show’s official website www.ignitionfestival.co.uk