Rock great Brian Johnson is to race a Mini at popular retro motoring festival, Croft Nostalgia Weekend, this coming weekend. As well as fast cars and wheel-to-wheel racing, this event will feature vintage music and dress along with a funfair.
AC/DC front man Johnson first witnessed motor racing at Croft in the mid-1960s – and returns to the track behind the wheel of a 1964 Mini Cooper. The man famous for tracks including 'Highway to Hell' and 'Back in Black' will be competing in the Historic Touring Cars, racing the Mini he purchased late last year, after driving it in his television series, 'Cars That Rock With Brian Johnson'.
The self-titled car nut had his first experience of Croft when he watched an MG race at the North Yorkshire track in the mid-1960s. The singer now says: "I was 17-and-a-half when I got my first car – a Ford Popular, sit-up-and-beg style and 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 on a rainy day and with just one windscreen wiper on this Popular, 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. I was recently one of the drivers in a Porsche 911 that finished first-in-class and 20th overall at the Le Mans Classic, but it'll be quite a departure from that car's big fat tyres and rear wing to the little Mini I'll be driving this 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!"