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Historic racer enters every event at this weekend's Brands Hatch Masters Festival

Friday, May 27 2011

Racing a historic car would be considered the chance of a lifetime for many people, but for Roger Wills it's just the start of a busy weekend. At this year's Masters Historic Festival, taking place at Brands Hatch from Saturday 28 to Monday 30 May, Roger will be driving a car in all fifteen races.

The New Zealand-born and Moscow-based financier can usually be found racing modern GT cars but has a soft spot for historic events, as evidenced by his extensive fleet of classic cars. However, even Roger's collection has fallen slightly short of requirements and he has rented a Van Diemen Formula Ford car for the Champion of Brands FF1600 race.

Speaking today, Wills explained that he hadn't actually planned to compete in all the races this weekend.

"It wasn't so much planned but it just happened this way," said Wills.

"We figured out beforehand that we had a car in every race except for the Formula Ford race, so I rented a car for the weekend and I will try and complete all the races.

"I think I did most of the races last year and at a normal race weekend I tend to drive a lot, but this will be the biggest challenge I think I've ever done. By Monday night I'm sure I will be a bit worn out but the adrenaline should take me through the weekend."

The classics that Roger will be racing range from a 1961 Mini Cooper to a pair of Formula One cars from Lotus and Williams. In between can be found a Lotus Elite, BMW CSL and a Russian Gaz Volga that was built especially for F1 driver Vitaly Petrov to race at Goodwood.

As if entering every race wasn't enough, two of Roger's collection will be taking part in the Sports Racing Masters event. With up to two drivers sharing each car, Roger will jump out of his McLaren and into an Elva at the pitstops to complete the race!

However, asking Roger which of his cars is his favourite proved a difficult question.

"It's a little bit like asking which of my kids is my favourite when it comes to my favourite car!" joked Wills.

"I'm really looking forward to driving the John Player Special Lotus as it has just finished restoration. The McLaren for me is always a big highlight as it is so much fun to drive and the Minis are a laugh as well."

Roger's aim for the weekend is simple to have as much fun as possible.

"You always try to win them all but I'm possibly doing too much. I hope to be up there as much as I can and I hope to be fighting at the front.

"This year I've looked forward to the Masters Historic Festival at Brands Hatch more than anything else. I've been racing in the Le Mans Series this year but the modern motor sport to me isn't as fun as the historic. I'm really excited to be out in the historic cars, especially around the Brands Hatch Grand Prix loop as it is really special and it is the top two or three circuits in the world for me."

The Masters Historic Festival features racing from the great cars of the last 60 years and includes events for Formula One, Sportscars, GTs and Touring Cars. There will also be track demonstrations from more modern Formula One cars and car club parades and displays.

Tickets for the Masters Historic Festival at Brands Hatch on 28-30 May cost £12 on the gate on Saturday and £21 on Sunday and Monday for adults. Entry is free for children aged 12 and under. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click on the link below.