Pre-war cars to line up on Silverstone Classic grid to celebrate Bentley's 100-year anniversary

This summer’s Silverstone Classic will celebrate Bentley’s 100th birthday with a special anniversary race dedicated to honouring the illustrious British car maker.

Sunday, 20th January 2019, 6:00 am
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 5:53 pm

The Bentley Centenary Trophy for Pre-War Sports Cars on Saturday, July 27 comes almost exactly 100 years after W. O. Bentley founded the company on July 10, 1919.

To mark the occasion, Silverstone Classic organisers hope that a record turnout of more than 30 iconic racing Bentleys will line up, as in period, in a field also packed with pre-war Alfa Romeos, Aston Martins, Bugattis, Fraser Nashes, Lagondas and MGs all dating back to the 1920s and 1930s.

It was in competition that the Bentley brand first earned its reputation, winning the coveted Le Mans 24 Hours five times in seven years between 1924 and 1930, topped by a 1-2-3 podium clean sweep 90 years ago in 1929.

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"Those glorious tales of the big green Bentleys thundering through the French night are part of motorsport legend passed down through the generations,” said Nick Wigley, Silverstone Classic CEO.

"Now we will be recreating some of that magic at sunset on Saturday at the classic to celebrate what is a very special moment in Bentley’s remarkable lifetime."

Examples of the 3-litre, 4.5-litre Blower and Speed Six models, driven with such success in France, will be among the record numbers lining up at the classic. The Bentley Centenary Trophy for Pre-War Sports Cars is being organised by Motor Racing Legends, whose chairman, Duncan Wiltshire, anticipates a record-breaking grid.

"This is such a significant anniversary – a once-in-a-lifetime celebration which is certain to appeal to all those with eligible Bentleys," said Mr Wiltshire.

"As a result, we are expecting an enormous turn-out and, by all probability, the biggest grid of racing Bentleys ever seen anywhere in the world."