Resurrecting Classic Race Car Driving

By Craig Ranson
By Craig Ranson

Managing Director – Bridge Classic Cars

Nestled in the centre of France, just a few miles from Clermont-Ferrand is a newly founded school of classic race car training: The Classic Racing Group.

Julien Chaffard, a young French engineer and enthusiast has set up the world’s first full-service curriculum school for open-wheel racing. The company consists of only 6 employees with all of them under the age of 30. The light and young energy reflects Julien’s laid back, easy to like aura. The courses allow engineers and enthusiasts to get involved and learn how to drive these classic machines.

The school hosts its classes in the nearby legendary Circuit de Charade which was the home to the 1965 and 1972 Formula One championships and has a history with Jackie Stewart, Jim Clark, and Jochen Rindt gracing its circuit with their victories. Close to the home of Michelin, the stunning track has been carved from the mountains and features dramatic elevation changes. Sir Stirling Moss, former F1 racing driver claimed, “I don’t know a more wonderful track than Charade.”

Their classes run through the summer, starting in spring and concluding in autumn. Within these courses, individuals learn how to drive and handle exact replicas of the much revered Formula Fords that were manufactured by the Crosslé Car Company, which won the European Championship in 1969. These replicas have been made by Crosslé itself which still stands as the UK’s oldest racing manufacturers. As well as these classes, participants are also welcomed into the Classic Racing school’s club house that’s decorated by timeless memorabilia and a luxury bar.

The school offer three types of programmes to racing enthusiasts; an ad-hoc styled track Day for those want a chance to sit behind the wheel of a classic single-seater, a Racing School for the more dedicated students who can join get involved in several events during the year, or a Competition Experience.

With the art and trade of classic race car driving, and in tern engineering, slowly dying out, the only way to resurrect it, is to involve the next generations. With much of the engineering found in these classic motors spurring the ground breaking mechanics of the cars we see on tracks today, the best way to advance the industry is to get involved in its past.

If you fancy your chance at becoming a classic race car driver, or are an enthusiast, we’ve got just the car for you! Our 1972 Original Chevron B20 72-2 is up for sale and is thought to be one of just a few in existence. You can view the car for sale here and take a look at our blogs about it here.

You can see the full interview with Petrolicious here as well as their stunning photos;

Check out the racing school’s website here:

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