Mazda to race two MX-5 sportscars at Silverstone

April 30, 2013
  • Pair of 130mph Mazda MX-5 convertibles to contest Britcar Production Sportscar Series
  • Race-prepared by Jota Sport, 160ps 2.0-litre cars will be mechanically standard
  • Four drivers to tackle two 45 minute races on the International Circuit

Mazda UK is returning to the race track next month, entering a pair of Mazda MX-5 sportscars in the Britcar Production Sportscar Series event at Silverstone on Saturday 11 May.

The two 130mph racecars, sponsored by SMH Fleet Solutions, Mazda Financial Services, Total Lubricants, Sparco and Jota Aviation, are based closely on the soft-top Mazda MX-5 Sport Tech models powered by a 160ps 2.0-litre MZR engine with a smooth-shifting six-speed manual transmission and fitted with a Limited Slip Differential (LSD) for enhanced handling precision.

Racing on Silverstone’s nine-corner, 1.85-mile long International Circuit plays to the MX-5 sportscar’s strengths of outstanding handling, 50:50 weight distribution and agility, especially through the corners. The second round of the Britcar Production Sportscar series poses an exciting proposition to defy convention, taking on the more powerful Porsche, Ginetta and Mazda teams contesting in the two 45-minute races.

This is the fifth time Mazda UK has entered Britcar and this year sees two regular experienced Mazda works drivers Mark Ticehurst, 42 from Hassocks, West Sussex and motoring journalist and racing driver Owen Mildenhall aged 40 from Bexleyheath, partnering up to drive the production MX 5 race cars with Motoring Research journalist Richard Aucock and previous Mazda MX-5 Britcar competitor, David Hooper from Wheel World Reviews.

Following a successful result in the 2011 Britcar Dunlop Production GTN Championship 2011, the MX-5 production race car secured three podium finishes, placing the car fourth in class and seventh overall for the 2011 season.

“Mazda performed well with these cars in 2011 and is delighted to get back into motorsport by taking our iconic roadster to the most famous circuit in Britain,” comments Graeme Fudge, PR Director, Mazda UK. “Fun-to-drive characteristics are at the very heart of our legendary and immensely popular Mazda MX-5 sportscar, which remains unrivalled as an exhilarating motor that can also be used everyday.

“With its front-engined, rear-wheel drive chassis, the lightweight MX-5 delivers perfectly balanced handling, a thrilling drive and our Japanese brand’s unique ‘Jinba Ittai’ nimble handling finesse. Unsurprisingly, it’s still the world’s best-selling two seater sportscar and has been voted ‘Best Roadster’ by Auto Express magazine for six years in a row,” adds Fudge.

Prepared by Jota Sport, the MX-5 racecar duo are mechanically standard and feature safety modifications which include FIA-compliant racing seat and driver harness, full roll-cage, competition steering wheel and alloy wheels, fire extinguisher, external electric cut-off switches and safety catches on the bonnet and boot. Non-essential interior components are removed to reduce weight.

All the racing action from Silverstone is scheduled to be featured on Motors TV at 18.00hrs on Friday 31 May 2013.

The 2013 Mazda MX-5 road car line-up offers customers a choice of four soft-top and six roadster coupe models with a powered folding roof. Prices start at £18,495 (OTR) for the 126ps, 1.8-litre SE Air Con soft-top with five-speed manual transmission and peak at £23,695 for the 160ps, 2.0-litre Powershift roadster coupe.

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