ROCK legend and renowned petrol head Brian Johnson is set to rev up a retro motoring festival this weekend with his beloved Mini.
The AC/DC frontman, originally from Tyne and Wear, will be making an appearance at the Croft Nostalgia Weekend, held at Croft Circuit, near Darlington, on Saturday and Sunday. (August 2 and 3)
The circuit holds a special place in the singer’s heart as it provided his first experience of motor racing in the mid-1960s, sparking his love of the sport.
The fifth annual nostalgia event, which brings together fast cars with vintage style and music, is hoping to attract its biggest crowd yet this weekend.
Now based in Florida, Mr Johnson – famous for rock anthems Back in Black and Shook Me All Night Long – has been competing in historic events for more than two decades.
The self-confessed ‘car nut’ devoted an entire section of his 2009 autobiography to the Croft Circuit as the place where his love of motor sport was born.
He said: “I was 17-and-a-half when I got my first car – a Ford Popular with only three gears.
“That August, I was in my home village of Dunston near Gateshead with not much to do, when somebody said there was racing on at Croft – so myself and two friends headed down there.
“We drove straight past the lady on the gate because we couldn’t afford to buy tickets.
“Having got my initial taste of live motor racing at Croft, I jumped at the chance to race at the Nostalgia Weekend.
“As a circuit, Croft is a complete step into the unknown for me and I’ve been told it’s quite a challenge, so I’m fully expecting a big learning curve and to get my backside royally kicked by the nostalgia regulars. It should be a fun weekend and I’m really looking forward to it.”
Croft circuit manager Mike Cantelo said he was delighted that the rock legend had signed up to take part and added: “Just when I didn’t think this year’s Nostalgia Weekend could possibly get any better, to receive a call from Brian Johnson saying he planned to come along and compete was just incredible.
“I reckon spectators will be more than a little in awe when they see a rock legend out on-track here at Croft this weekend.”
Tickets cost £13 for Saturday entry, £18 for Sunday or £23 for a weekend pass, available on the gate.
Accompanied children aged 15 and under go free.
A full provisional racing timetable can be found at croftcircuit.co.uk/timetables/nostalgia-2014.pdf