AC/DC singer Brian Johnson to race his Mini at North East circuit

Rock star returns to North East circuit where he first fell in love with motor racing as a teenager

Brian Johnson
Brian Johnson

Rock star Brian Johnson will be returning to his native North East - for the second time in a month - to celebrate his second love.

The AC/DC singer is also a motor racing fanatic who has taken part in a number of races around the world and recently presented a TV series about classic automobiles, Cars That Rock With Brian Johnson.

This weekend he will be taking part in the Nostalgia Weekend at the Croft motor racing circuit near Darlington, a venue he used to visit in the 1960s to watch MG racing.

He will be racing in a mini at the fifth Croft nostalgia event, just a few weeks after returning to Tyneside to pick up an honorary degree at Northumbria University.

He said: “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!

“Hopefully, the test day beforehand will help me to get up to some kind of speed ahead of the racing – it should be a fun weekend and I’m really looking forward to it.”

In 2009, Johnson released an autobiography called Rockers and Rollers, which includes a section on Croft. Having played a formative role in his love of motor sport, the singer is looking forward to making his competitive bow at the North East’s premier circuit.

Croft circuit manager Mike Cantelo said: “Just when I didn’t think this year’s Nostalgia Weekend could possibly get any better, to receive a phone call from Brian Johnson saying he plans to come along and compete was just incredible!

“I was a bit star-struck, I must confess, and I reckon spectators will be more than a little in awe when they see a rock legend out on-track here at Croft this weekend.

“Brian is clearly a complete petrol-head, and I’m sure he will have a fantastic time not only racing his Mini in the Historic Touring Cars class, but also seeing some of the superb classic racing and non-racing machinery we’ll have here at the weekend.”

Tickets for the weekend are available at .

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