Benn Tilley secures second spot in the Classic Formula 3 Championship
Bourne’s Benn Tilley saw his boyhood dream come true during a season where he took second spot in the Classic Formula 3 Championship.
Tilley took two outright wins and a podium every time while driving the oldest car on the grid in an excellent championship campaign.
He also enjoyed an amazing end of season experience when he was invited down to Goodwood to race at the 78th members meeting in a Lotus 23B owned by Nick Fennell.
Benn explained: “Overall I was very pleased with how the year went and I was lucky enough to have a couple of end of season treats as well.
“The first was a boyhood dream come true as the invitation to Goodwood was an amazing experience being on the grid with former and current Le Mans drivers plus a British touring car driver.
“It was a David versus Goliath kind of race with Ford GT40s against smaller engined sports cars.
“We ended up 12th overall and second in the smaller engined class so it was a very good result and a dream come true which I was extremely grateful for.”
Tilley rounded off the year by being invited by Simon Hadfield to race his Van Diemen RF86 Formula Ford at the Walter Hayes Trophy which is a festival for Formula Fords of all ages.
The event ranged from 1967 to brand new chassis, all of which have the same 1600cc Ford Kent X-Flow engine.
Benn added: “The newer chassis are better than the older ones but you can still be competitive in an older chassis.
“There were 104 Formula Fords entered and my aim was to make the Grand Final which was the final 36 cars out of those 104.
“I managed to progress straight through to the semi-final from my heat and that was such a close race where I just managed to scrape through to the Grand Final.
“The pre-1993 race was just before the Grand Final and that was a typical Formula Ford race with a train of nine cars covered by around two seconds at the finish line.
“It was so close having to defend and attack plus changing positions every lap and I ended up seventh overall.
“The Grand Final was a very close race with some of the newer cars to start with and then I got battling with one car for the last half of the race.
“I ended up 31st overall in a car from 1986 which was the oldest car to make the Grand Final. It’s been an amazing year and I am super grateful to everyone that has helped to make it possible.”