EVENT: TOP GEAR FESTIVAL DAY ONE

– Words: Jason Hanif. Photos: MJ Digital & Stefan Trajkovski.

Day one of the most anticipated event at Sydney Motorsport Park so far for 2014 has just passed here in Sydney. Top Gear Festival has returned to Sydney for its second year featuring a two day extravaganza kicking off with Jeremy Clarkson, James May and the man we know as, The Stig.

This years event once again featured all things car related with action-packed stunts in between from exotics to race-cars, bikes, a Formula-One car, the all new McLaren 650S and a celebration of racing legend Ayrton Senna.

We’ll be posting in-depth event coverage of all the action throughout the week, but for now here’s some quick snapshots of what went down today.

Straight into it, Formula-One star Daniel Ricciardo today smashed a lap record clocking a 1:13:08 beating Mark Webber’s previous record of 1:13:6060. This was achieved on only his third lap, ever. All eye’s on Ricciardo as he takes over Mark Webber’s position for the 2014 F1 season.

Nico’s ‘BATMAN’ Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 was part of the supercar showcase, which took place after lunch to give spectators the opportunity to see and hear some of the world’s best supercars out on the track.

He’s also the owner of this Honda NSX, which he decided to take out over the Lamborghini for a hot lap at Sydney Motorsport Park.

The NSX has just been fitted with new AME wheels and new livery, this one’s never looked better in our opinion!

One of the greatest experiences was made possible by Destination NSW at this years event. Legendary Formula One driver, Ayrton Senna’s Mclaren MP4/4 was on display. It’s been thirty years since Senna’s F1 debut and twenty years since his tragic passing.

Record numbers at Sydney Motorsport Park were recorded once again today for the first day of the event. Forecasted rain didn’t stop show-goers with grandstands quickly filling up by midday. Sydney put on a great show despite forecasts!

Upon entrance, one of the first cars spotted at the GoPro stand was V-Sport’s Time Attack Evo X. For those that don’t know, V-Sport now have their own retail outlet within Sydney Motorsport Park. Well worth a visit.

Garage 88 has made a debut of their anticipated Toyota 86. This has been over a year in the making, we’ve got a lot more to come on it soon.

On an opposing side of the trader alley, Toyota had an ’86 Playground’ where visitors could experience the 86 on their skidpan track.

Plenty of filler entertainment in between stunts and presentations this year with the Just Car Insurance drifting display.

We’ve got some more on-track shots of the drifts coming soon!

Fresh off hire duties, the Queen Street Group Rolls Royce has been popular amongst celebrities lately. Rapper Snoop Dogg was chauffeured in it during his Sydney visit recently, with Pharrell, Kevin Hart and Jackie O making use of it this week.

The Rolls Royce was parked aside for a new car to the collection at Top Gear however.

This Koenigsegg CCX, which we believe is only one of two in the country is the latest addition to Queen Street Group (time for a new category we think, Queen Street hyper-cars!)

The boys from Queen Street Group have some exciting plans this year, including heading back to the drag strip after their absence in the last few years.

Advan Yokahama had our favourite Pro-AM car from World Time Attack Challenge on display. The Suttons S15 is as functional as it is visually pleasing. We hope to bring you more of this in the near future.

It was definitely interesting to see the reactions of a majority crowd who couldn’t fathom the need for such a big wing!

The Pulse Racing Evo was tucked away on the opposing corner, still looking fresh from last years World Time Attack Challenge.

On the subject of World Time Attack Challenge, this year they presented Royal Purple Oil Stars during the event.

This involved a showdown battle between Jason Naidoo, Nik Kalis, Chris Tiqui and Daniel Farquhar (pictured left to right).

Moving onto the back-side of pit-lane, trader Sports Auto Group had this Lamborghini Murcielago LP640, Lamborghini Gallardo and a Nissan R34 GT-R V-Spec amongst others on display.

IPE Australia, who produce performance exhaust systems went even further with this new Lamborghini Aventador on display.

This was alongside Active Autowerke, who are a performance workshop based in Melbourne.

Their M3, which we first saw at 100mm last year is one of the best models we’ve seen.

Loving the livery on this Honda bike!

Custom motorcycle and lifestyle shop Deus Ex Machina brought out this early model Corvette.

They had a club section display with plenty of motorcycles on show.

The supercar showcase also featured a Lexus LFA…

As well as this Ferrari F430 Scuderia, the one and only Pagani Zonda C12-S in Australia and a number of other Ferrari, Lamborghini and Audi models.

Erebus Motorsport from the Gold Coast had this E63 AMG brought down for the Ultimate Speed Showdown. This V8 Supercar has a 5.0L V8 capable of 650hp weighing in at 1310kg.

They also brought down this SLS AMG, which we saw compete in the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour recently. The SLS is has a 6.2L V8 capable of 563hp weighing in at 1335kg.

Meanwhile, Porsche were offering Sport Driving School sessions at the event. This was one of their new (fire-safe) GT3’s on display.

The most anticipated new car to be shown at Top Gear Festival was the McLaren 650S. Coming directly from its global launch at the Geneva Motor Show, the 650S is capable of 0 – 100 in just 3.0 seconds!

The Turtle Wax car club arena had some amazing cars and clubs on display. Our favourite car on display there would have to be this 911 sporting Martini livery. With examples like these, it’s easy to see why Porsche still stand by the classic design philosophy.

Club Lotus Australia also had an impressive line-up of new and older models.

There’s a lot to see and do for the whole family at Top Gear Festival Sydney. From the snapshots of today plenty of hyper-cars, exotics, time-attack and car club presence with non stop action packed stunts.

We’ve got plenty more coverage of all the action to come, stay tuned to our blog, Facebook and Instagram pages.

Top Gear Festival Sydney continues on Sunday, March 9th at Sydney Motorsport Park.

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