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The 6 Hours of Silverstone (formerly the 1000 km of Silverstone) is an endurance sports car race held at Silverstone Circuit near the Northamptonshire villages of Silverstone and Whittlebury. First run in 1976 as part of the World Sportscar Championship, the race continues today with the FIA World Endurance Championship. Since 2013, the RAC Tourist Trophy has been awarded to the winners of the event.

6 Hours of Silverstone
6 Hours of Silverstone.jpg
Silverstone circuit.svg
VenueSilverstone Circuit
Corporate sponsorAutosport
First race1976
First FIA WEC race2012
Duration6 Hours
Previous names1000 Kilometres of Silverstone
Most wins (driver)
Most wins (team)United Kingdom Silk Cut Jaguar (5)
Most wins (manufacturer)Porsche (7)

Contents

HistoryEdit

In 1975, a round of the World Championship of Makes was not held in Britain for one of the first times since 1966. The 1000 km Brands Hatch which had been run almost consecutively during that period went under hiatus while track upgrades were carried out. Following upgrades of its own in 1975, plans were made for sportscars to return to Britain by using Silverstone instead of Brands Hatch. The event was a six-hour endurance, part of the Group 5 World Championship.

The first running consisted of a small field as some season competitors chose not to compete. British drivers John Fitzpatrick and Tom Walkinshaw managed to upset the factory teams by scoring the inaugural victory in a BMW. The following year, competition grew as the factory Porsche team, under the guise of Martini Racing, earned their first of two consecutive victories for drivers Jochen Mass and Jacky Ickx. The Porsche factory team was not able to continue their streak into 1979 when their lead car crashed, leaving the privateer Gelo Racing Porsche to a dominant win.

1980 saw the first victory by a sports-prototype. Alain de Cadenet managed to win the home event as a driver, team owner, as well as a constructor when he and Desiré Wilson won by 18 seconds in a car of his own design. A Group 5 car took its final victory in 1981 with the all-German Velga Racing Team before the class was phased out.

1982 was the first year of the Group C category in the World Championship, although the race that year was actually won by an older Group 6 Lancia. The first Group C victory came in 1983 as Porsche returned to their factory dominance of the event, going on to win the 1984 and 1985 events as well. Jacky Ickx and Jochen Mass still hold record of most wins, having won the race four times in 1977, 1978, 1984 and 1985. In 1986 British success returned as the Jaguar factory team was able to upset Porsche for the first time since the company had returned to racing. Jaguar then began to dominate in a fashion similar to Porsche, as they too won the next two years. American Eddie Cheever co-drove in each of the three victories.

No race was held in 1989 as Donington temporarily replaced Silverstone on the schedule, but sportscars returned in 1990 for a shorter 480 km event. Jaguar returned to their winning ways straight away before going on to earn a fifth straight victory in a 430 km event in 1991. Only after Jaguar officially retired from the World Championship was another manufacturer able to once again earn victory at Silverstone, this time being Peugeot. A lack of entrants however lead to the cancellation of the World Championship, temporarily ending endurance racing at the circuit. The race did make a one-year comeback in 2000 as part of the American Le Mans Series. The race served as a precursor to the European Le Mans Series that followed in 2001.

In 2004, the new Le Mans Endurance Series was created to resurrect several 1000 km endurance races in a modern era. Among these was Silverstone, running at its original distance. Once again, British success started off the return of the event as Allan McNish and the British Audi team won the event. Audi and McNish won again the following year, this time under the control of the French Oreca team, although the race was heavily hampered by rain. Silverstone took a brief hiatus in 2006 as Donington replaced the event once again, only to return once again in 2007. Peugeot earned their second victory, this time with a diesel-powered Le Mans prototype. The 2010 edition will be the inaugural race of the Le Mans Intercontinental Cup, as well as the first time the race use the new 5.901 km (3.667 mi) "Arena" configuration. The race will continue in 2012 as a part of the FIA World Endurance Championship.

WinnersEdit

Year Drivers Team Car
6 Hour distance
1976   John Fitzpatrick
  Tom Walkinshaw
  Hermetite BMW BMW 3.5 CSL
1977   Jochen Mass
  Jacky Ickx
  Martini Racing Porsche 935/77
1978   Jochen Mass
  Jacky Ickx
  Martini Racing Porsche 935/78
1979   Hans Heyer
  Bob Wollek
  John Fitzpatrick
  Gelo Sportswear Team Porsche 935/77A
1980   Alain de Cadenet
  Desiré Wilson
  Alain de Cadenet De Cadenet Lola-Ford
1981   Harald Grohs
  Walter Röhrl
  Dieter Schornstein
  Vegla Racing Team Porsche 935J
1982   Riccardo Patrese
  Michele Alboreto
  Martini Racing Lancia LC1
1000 km distance
1983   Derek Bell
  Stefan Bellof
  Rothmans Porsche Porsche 956
1984   Jochen Mass
  Jacky Ickx
  Rothmans Porsche Porsche 956
1985   Jochen Mass
  Jacky Ickx
  Rothmans Porsche Porsche 962C
1986   Derek Warwick
  Eddie Cheever
  Silk Cut Jaguar Jaguar XJR-6
1987   Eddie Cheever
  Raul Boesel
  Silk Cut Jaguar Jaguar XJR-8
1988   Eddie Cheever
  Martin Brundle
  Silk Cut Jaguar Jaguar XJR-9
1989 No race
480 km distance
1990   Martin Brundle
  Alain Ferté
  Silk Cut Jaguar Jaguar XJR-11
430 km distance
1991   Teo Fabi
  Derek Warwick
  Silk Cut Jaguar Jaguar XJR-14
500 km distance
1992   Derek Warwick
  Yannick Dalmas
  Peugeot Talbot Sport Peugeot 905 Evo 1B
1993
to
1999
No races
2000   JJ Lehto
  Jörg Müller
  BMW Motorsport BMW V12 LMR
2001
to
2003
No races
1000 km distance
2004   Pierre Kaffer
  Allan McNish
  Audi Sport UK Team Veloqx Audi R8
2005   Allan McNish
  Stéphane Ortelli
  Audi PlayStation Team Oreca Audi R8
2006 No race
2007   Marc Gené
  Nicolas Minassian
  Team Peugeot Total Peugeot 908 HDi FAP
2008   Allan McNish
  Rinaldo Capello
  Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R10 TDI
2009   Olivier Panis
  Nicolas Lapierre
  Team Oreca Matmut AIM Oreca 01-AIM
2010   Nicolas Minassian
  Anthony Davidson
  Team Peugeot Total Peugeot 908 HDi FAP
6 Hour distance
2011   Sébastien Bourdais
  Simon Pagenaud
  Peugeot Sport Total Peugeot 908
2012   Benoît Tréluyer
  André Lotterer
  Marcel Fässler
  Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro
2013   Tom Kristensen
  Allan McNish
  Loïc Duval
  Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro
2014   Anthony Davidson
  Nicolas Lapierre
  Sébastien Buemi
  Toyota Racing Toyota TS040 Hybrid
2015   André Lotterer
  Benoît Tréluyer
  Marcel Fässler
  Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro
2016   Marc Lieb
  Neel Jani
  Romain Dumas
  Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid
2017   Anthony Davidson
  Kazuki Nakajima
  Sébastien Buemi
  Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid
2018   Mathias Beche
  Thomas Laurent
  Gustavo Menezes
  Rebellion Racing Rebellion R13-Gibson

† - Race went under a 6-hour time limit. Only 776 km of the 1000 km scheduled were covered.

External linksEdit

ReferencesEdit