Classic cars and boats put on a great show

The occasional shower couldn’t dampen the spirits of thousands of families and motorsport enthusiasts who showed up to experience the inaugural Cholmondeley Pageant of Power last weekend.

More than 20,000 people came from all over the country to hear the roar of boat, car, plane and other performance engines at Cholmondeley Castle.

Enthusiasts were joined by some of the legends of motor sport such as Le Mans-winning Derek Bell and 87-year-old veteran racer Tommy Entwistle who were on hand all weekend to meet fans and regale them with stories of their heroic victories.

The pair even took their legendary vehicles (the Speed 8 Bentley and TVR respectively) out for a spin on the castle’s MSA-approved time trial track much to the crowds’ delight.

More than 50 helicopters landed in the park over the weekend including the Vietnam-era Huey complete with mounted machine guns firing blanks as it soared above the crowds.

Elsewhere families were thrilled by performances on the 25 acre mere as Formula 2, Formula, OSY.400 and Thundercats raced round the course. There were thrills and spills as a Thundercat flipped and the OSY’s collided.

James Hall, event director, said: “We are delighted with the success of the inaugural Pageant of Power. Feedback from our visitors has been phenomenal.

“At one stage I was able to simultaneously watch a Le Mans winning Bentley screeching away from the start whilst a Formula 2 powerboat simultaneously carved the most extraordinary turn on the mere, whilst a Squirrel Helicopter buzzed overhead.

“And that must be unique. Although the weekend started wet, we were delighted to welcome over 20,000 spectators across the two day event and everybody I spoke to seemed to have had an amazing time.”

Plans are already being made for the second Cholmondeley Pageant of Power to take place in 2009.