Scotland’s first purpose built Motor Sport venue hosts Jim Clark tribute

A full weekend tribute to Scotland’s first ever Formula 1 World Champion Jim Clark will be held by the Bo’ness Revival on 31 August to 1 September 2019. This year marks the 60th anniversary of Jim Clark’s only competition appearance at Bo’ness, Scotland’s first purpose-built motorsport venue. He competed there in three cars in one meeting: a Porsche 356, Lister Jaguar in which he set fastest time of the day, and a Lotus Elite he had driven at the Le Mans 24 Hours the previous weekend.

There shall be a special class in the Revival Hillclimb featuring actual cars or types of cars driven by Jim Clark during his career. The current provisional entry list includes a DKW, Porsche 356, Triumph TR3’s and various types of Lotus road and circuit cars. The organisers are keen to have as large a selection of cars which Jim Clark competed in and a full list of eligible cars is available.

The Bo’ness Revival is not just an historic Hillclimb, it combines with the Bo’ness Revival Classic to make Scotland’s only combined motor sport and classic car event, so the Jim Clark theme is not just confined to the Revival Hillclimb. Saturday shall see an expected 100 cars participate in the Jim Clark Road Tour, sponsored by the TR Register, heading to the newly refurbished Jim Clark Museum in Duns, with the event being planned in association with the Jim Clark Trust.
Also on Saturday is the Bo’ness Saltire Trophy, sponsored by the Jaguar Enthusiasts Club, which is a competitive Historic Rally and Production Car Autotest event with regularity sections and other features. In 2018, a number of entrants to the Revival took part in the Bo’ness Saltire Trophy on Saturday and competed in the Hillclimb on Sunday making for an interesting weekend of activity

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On Sunday in the Revival Classic Showfield shall be busy with and expected five hundred plus classic cars from over forty clubs. The Showfield arena will see ring commentators Wayne Scott and Sam Colman, host interviews and the popular Classic Car Carkhana. Later a presentation takes place of the numerous awards which are on offer. In addition there shall be a static display of Jim Clark cars, which shall hopefully include some of the actual cars driven by Jim Clark.

Hillclimbs for motorcycles were first held at Bo’ness in 1932, with the first car meeting held in 1934. Kinneil Estate was promoted and developed as a motor sport venue from 1933 onwards. Plans included an 880 yard hill climb track and a 2.5 mile road racing circuit. Sadly, the circuit proposal did not come to fruition but the hill climb flourished and became the second oldest purpose built Hillclimb venue in the UK, Shelsley Walsh in Worcestershire being the first.
The pre-War meetings were held up to six times per year and attracted the UK’s best drivers who were keen to take on the challenge of the fast and demanding track including the very quick Old Paddock Bend, the daunting stone walls of the Courtyard and also the notorious Snake Bend. Post-war the track was lengthened slightly and the venue significantly upgraded with extended safety banking, a new paddock and a covered pits area to gain an RAC International track licence.

In 1947 the inaugural round of the British Hill Climb Championship was held at Bo’ness in front of a huge crowd of 20,000 spectators. Rounds of the British Championship continued to be held annually at Bo’ness until the track closed in 1967. Most of the UK’s top drivers of the 1940’s, 50’s and 60’s competed at Bo’ness and the list includes Jim Clark, Sir Stirling Moss, Sir Jackie Stewart, Peter Collins, Bob Gerard, Sydney Allard, Les Leston, Archie Scott Brown, Ken Wharton, Tony Marsh, Ron Flockhart, Ninian Sanderson, Ian Stewart and Jimmy Stewart to name just a few.
Competition ended at Bo’ness in 1967 when the landowner announced the sale of land at the top of the Hill for a housing development, resulting in the loss of half of the track length. The venue was dismantled and Kinneil Estate returned to its role as a public park. All this changed in 2008 when a group of enthusiasts formed Bo’ness Revival with the aim of returning motorsport to this nationally important venue, with the event growing in stature year on year.
To join the weekend of fun at the Bo’ness Revival as a show field entrant please contact [email protected].
Rules and regulations plus entry forms for hill climb competitors for the Jaguar classes can be found online at www.bonessrevival.co.uk

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