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Lotus champion to be crowned amid festival fever

Sunday, October 16 2011

Festival fever continues at Brands Hatch with the fourth running of the Vee Festival this Saturday (22 October). The Volkswagen-based Formula Vee is a cost-effective single seater series that is both a home for club racers and a stepping stone for ambitious youngsters.

Started in the late 1960s at the same time as Formula Ford, the similarly-dimensioned cars, bereft of aerodynamic aids, were instrumental in launching the careers of Formula 1 champions Niki Lauda, Emerson Fittipaldi and Keke Rosberg. Whilst the series no longer enjoys the same level of manufacturer support as the blue oval's version, it retains a great deal of popularity.

The festival comes just two weeks after the final round of the 2011 Formula Vee Championship, which was won by reigning champion Martin Farmer. Rookie sensation Michael Epps, however, is sure to be one of the festival favourites, along with current form man Paul Smith. The race format is similar to last weekend's Formula Ford Festival, with heats and a final.

There will also be much focus on the final round of the inaugural Lotus Cup UK Championship, which goes down to the wire. The overall champion will come from the Production class as Ken Savage leads Steve Quick by just twelve points. However look to Mark Fullalove and Steve Williams for the race win, as the pair have dominated on this track in the past. They'll be fighting over the 2-Eleven class title too, the latter just ahead of the one-time BTCC competitor. Glenn Sherwood will be looking to confirm the Exige Cup crown in the one hour race, complete with mandatory pitstop for refuelling and optional driver changes.

Savage and Quick will also dispute the Elise Trophy sprint races, both having claimed wins this year, along with Stuart Rowland, who broke his duck at this circuit back in September. Last time out at Spa-Francorchamps, Ben Hyland won the Elise Trophy class but also look out for Chris Dunster - fast but a little short of luck in his debut season.

A packed day of racing also features the south east-based Quaife Intermarque Challenge and Cannons Tin Tops. Intermarque, for highly modified saloon and sports cars, runs over several classes including silhouette-based spaceframe racers and is a high-powered spectacle. The more production-based Tin Tops are no less exciting, with close racing amongst the categories.

Tickets for the Vee Festival at Brands Hatch are available in advance for £10, with free entry for children 12 and under. For more information, call 0843 453 9000 or click here.