If you miss the banshee like cry of past Formula engines or the raw of Classic V8’s then the Festival of Motor Sport at Hampton Downs Race Track is the event you really must attend. 
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This year sees an unprecedented turnout of Formula 5000 cars, the festivals star attraction as they go head to head in  the 2015 Gulf Oil Howden Ganley Formula 5000 Festival. Organisers believe this may be one of the largest ever gatherings of the iconic race cars.
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Spectators will be treated to reliving the glory of iconic V8, 10 and V12 powered machines, which ran in various specifications within the series in the USA, Europe and Australasia between 1968 and 1982.
The event has managed to bring together most if not all of the manufacturers who built cars for the series, covering all years of the F5000 formula’s life.
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The 2015 event, which still has one more weekend over 23-25 of January (this weekend) at the Hampton Downs Race Track in the North Waikato, is a celebration of both the Formula 5000 type of racing car and driver Howden Ganley. Unheralded Kiwi Ganley’s story is a fascinating one that took the former team mechanic to sports cars, F5000 and the dizzy heights of Formula One.
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It also marks the first ‘Formula 5000 World Series’ – the champion of which will be crowned after the last race of the second weekend of the Festival. At least one full grid of Formula 5000s will race during the Festival, and that could mean as many as 35 of the earth-shaking single seaters roaring around the Hampton Downs track almost five seconds a lap quicker than the best ‘V8 taxi’ is capable of.
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Along side the ‘Formula 5000 World Series’ racing will come support races including BMW E30 Class, European Race Series (ERC), Historic Single Seaters and Can-Am an Historic Formula Libre. This class includes the mighty 1960s and early ’70s big V8 sports racing cars including the types of cars that raced in the Canadian-American Challenge (Can-Am) by Bruce McLaren, Denny Hulme and others. 
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You can catch more of the action on and off track at Hampton Downs Race Track this weekend. For Event info and Tickets visit http://www.nzfmr.co.nz.
– Roger Baillie (@Rojn8r)
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Roger Baillie
Brought up in a world of Mini's, road trips, rallying and tinkering it is unsurprising that among my passions, since I can remember, cars have been something very special to me. The way they look, the way they smell and especially the way the sound. This passion has grown over the years from a spectator's seat at Formula 1 and WRC events to active participation in events such as the Cannonball Run NZ and Stance Off Events. My current love affair is with a slightly tuned Mk4 Golf GTI which brings me nothing but joy on the road. This love for driving and cars has led me start a Podcast dedicated to my love of driving called Drive Life NZ where I hope to share my story while exploring the varied stories of other enthusiasts. Dispelling the myths surrounding car people and celebrating our diversity.


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