Festival starts with a record breaking first weekend
New Zealand Festival of Motor Racing – Celebrating Porsche
The New Zealand Festival of Motor Racing is the country's largest historic motorsport event and takes place over two weekends in January at the Hampton Downs circuit in the North Waikato, approximately 45 minutes from Auckland.
In 2016 the event is being held on January 15th to 17th and 22nd to 24th with Stuggart's finest the stars of the show on both weekends. The two kiwi drivers pivotal to Porsche’s successful return to endurance racing, Brendon Hartley and Earl Bamber attended the first weekend of the festival sharing the driving duties for exhibition laps in two very special cars from the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart a 1977 Porsche 935 and 1998 WSC LMP1 Prototype, as well as signing autographs.
The twin-turbo 1977 Porsche 935 present at the festival. Photo / sourced
The Porsche Marquee has on display, in addition to the to the museum cars, a 918 Spyder (the latest Porsche super car), a Carrera GT and a full sized model of the Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 race car so successfully campaigned by Brendon & Earl in 2015.
At lunchtime on Sunday the 17th, superbly organised and managed by the Porsche Club of New Zealand, the record for the most Porsches ever assembled in one place at one time in New Zealand was smashed — with 402 Porsches assembled on the track at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park. The vehicles from the Porsche Museum headed the line-up, next was a 1993 964 Le Mans Turbo, the latest 918 Spyder and then a Porsche Carrera GT.
Fittingly behind them followed 27 Porsche 356s — the car that started it all for Porsche.
The 1998 WSC LMP1 Prototype present at the event. Photo / sourced
The second weekend of the festival kicks off on Friday the 22nd on January with another packed schedule of motor racing action on the circuit includes Porsche and Historic Muscle Cars, as well as numerous other exciting single seater and tin-top classes.
While Earl Bamber has returned to Europe for testing, Brendon Hartley will be joined this weekend by Mitch Evans in sharing the driving duties of the Museum vehicles. Mitch completed a test for Porsche last November in the 919 Hybrid LMP1 car with former Formula One star and two times Indy 500 winner Juan Pablo Montoya (40, Columbia).