The Algarve Classic Festival 2012 was held October 19-21 at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve in Portimao, Portugal. Renamed in its fourth year, the Algarve Classic (nee Historic) Festival is regarded by many as the finest historic motorsport event staged in the Iberian Peninsula.
The 2012 running of the Algarve Classic Festival saw a total of nine grids and 14 races on track, with an estimated 175 cars and 300 participants challenging the 18-turn, 2.915 mile Portimao circuit. Rain was the main protagonist for the nine races held during the final day. Yet, despite the adverse conditions, organizers called the Festival was the best in the four years it has been staged at Autódromo Internacional do Algarve. Racing classes included JD Classic Challenge, Under 2-liter Touring Cars, Stirling Moss Trophy, GT and Sport Car Cup, Pre-War Sport Cars, Formula Junior, 1000KM, Iberian Gentlemen Drivers and the Campeonato Nacional de Clássicos 1300.
DK attended the event last year and we were happy to once again attend with the BMW 328 which was so popular last year and the MGB. James Cottingham drove both cars extremely well despite the difficult conditions, sharing the MGB with Ecurie Ecosse racer Joe Twyman and the BMW with his father David. The MGB was to fight its way through the GT and Sports Car Cup grid which was 36 cars strong and included AC Cobras and Lightweight E-Types. Astonishingly the MGB finished 12th overall and 1st in class by more than a lap, a testament to hard the work put in by the workshop team to ensure the car's set-up was spot on for such a challenging circuit.
Saturday's dry pre-war race resulted in a second place overall finish for the BMW also gaining class honours after an extremely good drive by David Cottingham. Sunday was very wet indeed and it required James to grab the BMW by the scruff of its neck to shake the car in to 2nd in class and 4th overall. An excellent way to end a seasons racing.
With thanks to Tim Scott and Sports Car Digest