Coventry Motofest update 1

On 30th of May 2014 a little bit of history was made, seventy thousand people saw an automotive spectacle that may change the way we see and think about city centers.

At first glance it looked like just another great day out, hundreds of classic cars, bikes and even tractors filed the city center, but the live action events really caught the public attention with a short oval Stock Car circuit near the bus station and the ring road converted into a race track on the Sunday, that’s the bit I have the great honour of looking after. One memory that will stay with me for some time is driving the Jaguar XJR pace car at a good pace through the roundabout on junction 1 of the ring road with a genuine BTCC Rover SD1 looming large in my mirrors followed by a plethora of other superb racing machinery including thousand horse power Time Attack cars, British Cross Country Championship (BCCC) Bolwer Wildcat from Race 2 Recovery, even an LMP1!

Picture by Lewis Craik

My XJR ‘Dreadnought’. Picture by Lewis Craik

However, this was no ordinary car show. This involved the people of Coventry, the people who built many of the cars on display, at some of the great companies that made Coventry their home; Jaguar, Humber, Standard, Triumph, Alvis, Siddeley to name just a few. There were memories and stories flowing out from all over the city.
Quite deliberately the event was free to attend and be part of. Staffed by local volunteers the event is not for profit, instead it is part of a council endorsed initiative to promote the people of Coventry and the world class work they do.
Motofest also runs community projects such as getting local school children to design a car that will be built in Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations, you will see this car running at next year’s show on the ring road circuit.

From rally cars to classics, quite a mix.

From rally cars to classics, quite a mix.

We are also working on an idea to deliver automotive training to the people in need of a helping hand. We also have projects to showcase the vast talent of engineering companies in the area, did you know that every F1 car has something made or treated in Coventry? There is a lot going on that deserves wider recognition, and Motofest will be part of the crowd shouting it out.
Celebrating the glorious past is just one element, we also promote the present automotive industry, helping with recruitment and creating links.
But just as importantly we look to the future, showing concept cars and joining with Coventry University’s design graduate show. A vital part of what we do is inspiring youngsters to join this fantastic industry, from designers to technicians, from factory workers to senior managers.
Motofest inspires and is part of the community, it’s celebrating the past and building a future. The legacy of Motofest will be in the lives of the citizens who join in and, in a small way, the future we help to build.
Next year will be bigger and better, with competitive motorsport on the city streets, we are the first city to announce street racing following the commitment by the government to change the legislation governing this activity.

The view in my mirror!

The view in my mirror!

We’ve had a long think about how to use the city streets for racing and for next year we are going to start gently with sprint racing, but I will have other race car demonstrations too including Group B rally cars running two at a time through the chicanes, classic LeMans cars, Super Bikes, Formula Ford and many more. We are in the council diary for the next five years and we’re going to grow this into one of the worlds top events. The council have been astonishingly receptive to these plans and we may yet see a Monaco style tunnel and a LeMans style bridge appear as permanent parts of the city.

Not your average Sunday driver!

Not your average Sunday driver!

I’ll be giving you updates as we move forward and hopefully some of you will get involved. Motofest is a charity, we are not part of the counsel and we are not on their pay roll, we are fully independent and anyone can join in. Motofest is all about community involvement so please help spread the word.

Ralph Hosier

Technical Director

Coventry Motofest

Turbo the size of Essex, went well.

Turbo the size of Essex, went well.

It's all under control....

It’s all under control….

_MG_8986 (2)

Jon Fry drove 'Course Closing', impressive seeing a 300Tdi keeping up!

Jon Fry drove ‘Course Closing’, impressive seeing a 300Tdi keeping up!

_MG_8987 (2)

Dab of oppo from the Bowler there.

Dab of oppo from the Bowler there.

The Marshals who as ever make motorsport possible. Thanks to Nick B. Franc and Nick H.

The Marshals who as ever make motorsport possible. Thanks to Nick B. Franc and Nick H.

_MG_8984 (2)

_MG_8983 (2)

Time Attack = rolling thunder.

Time Attack = rolling thunder.

Look at the sunstrip, yes this Skoda does 227mph.

Look at the sunstrip, yes this Skoda does 227mph.


About Ralph Hosier

I love exploring everything the world has to offer, the fabulous beauty and intricacies of nature, the stunning majesty and grandeur of the universe, and the fascinating range of chocolates available from the local sweety shop. I have led a charmed life, sure there has been extremes, but the highs far outweigh the lows. I get paid for arsing about in very fast cars, I get to write about them and amazingly get paid for this too. My days are usually filled by making prototype and concept cars for car companies, a dream job. I have lived many of my dreams, worked all over the world, raced cars built by my own hand (and hardly ever crashed really badly), seen things and done stuff. But nothing compares to the love of Diana and my son Peter, beyond my greatest hopes. I am a chartered engineer, a member of the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI), and of the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET) and I am a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers. A pleasing fact is that there are now more letters after my name than there are in it ;) R.Hosier B.Eng(Hons) C.Eng MIET MIMI MGoMW
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2 Responses to Coventry Motofest update 1

  1. Peter Jones says:

    Great update there Ralph,
    Have been keeping an eye out for posts from Cov Motofest with the date getting much closer but it’s been a bit quiet, so thank you again for the update, especially the good news that Motofest is in the council diary for the next five years.
    As you know we were there last year with our Jaguar Sovereign 5.3 V12 “Bagheera” and all things being equal we will be there again this year. We too found it enthralling to have so many people who worked in the car industry, esp Jaguar, come and chat and tell us about their experiences.
    Motofest has a great format, let’s hope it doesn’t change too much as is definitely not to be missed.
    Peter and Linda Jones

  2. Bunnet says:

    I love your work, I live here in the states so there no way that come and see your great show but fan from the distance

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