Part of a long-anticipated European/UK motorhome trip for me was to be able to finally see famous racetracks I had only ever read about. Our European adviser, Phil Foulkes from Clevedon, and our UK friends Robin and Sue Longdon had urged us to firstly come to Dijon-Prenois and share the weekend with them, as the historic meeting featured a round of the FIA Lurani Trophy for Formula Juniors. The Dijon-Prenois circuit is a short roller-coaster ride around the Burgundy countryside, once host to Formula One and World Sports Car racing but now primarily a domestic venue. While its best days may be behind it, Dijon-Prenois will always have the distinction of hosting one of the most thrilling F1 duels – the time when Gilles Villeneuve’s Ferrari and René Arnoux’s Renault engaged in a titanic battle during the closing stages of the 1979 French Grand Prix.

We were welcomed into the Formula Junior pit area, where we had a wonderful weekend and became official Formula Junior ‘groupies’. Dijon-Prenois is a great-looking circuit, swooping and diving around its 3.8km length with some terrific viewing for spectators.

Spa-Francorchamps

Magical names like Stavelot, the Masta straight, Bourneville, La Source and Eau Rouge can only mean one racetrack – the famed Spa-Francorchamps facility buried in the Ardennes area of eastern Belgium, and it was to there our home on wheels took us in early June.

A Kiwi at Dijon-Prenois – Robin Longdon and his Lola FJ

Having read endless stories, race reports and gazed at hundreds of photographs over so many years, finally being able to actually see such an iconic racetrack was pretty special.

A huge blue crash helmet greets visitors at the entrance, and it is in the colours of Belgium’s favourite son, Jacky Ickx, who won the 24 Hours of Le Mans six times as well as scoring eight wins and 25 podium finishes in Formula One when he drove for Ferrari and Brabham. He won the Can-Am Championship in 1979 and is also a former winner of the Dakar Rally.


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