This weekend, Collecting Cars introduces an exciting new motoring series hosted by Chris Harris: Llandow Laps. Hosted at the fun family-run circuit in south Wales, this new collection of films will see two cars go head-to-head on track, with Chris behind the wheel.
The concept behind Llandow Laps is to pitch two vehicles from the same genre against one another to see which is faster; and the first series will feature grand tourers (with a twist), hot hatches, supercars, convertibles, and restomods.
As well as showcasing the cars’ performance on track, the films will also reveal the behind-the-scenes work required to produce the end result, introducing some of the personalities from the Llandow Circuit and the Collecting Cars team.
The science bit
All cars featured in Llandow Laps will be unmodified from the specification seen on screen, they’ll be running with a full tank of fuel, and they’ll be fitted with sensible tyres available on the road cars from the factory.
Lap times will be recorded, and a winner of each head-to-head will be revealed. A speed trap set up at the longest straight will also catch the cars as they power through, and be able to show which achieves the outright highest speed – although there’ll be more focus on the driving experience and character of the cars than on the numbers alone.
Like so many circuits, Llandow was originally an airfield; in use from 1937 until 1957, and seeing significant development during World War II as RAF Llandow. Those interested in the history of the circuit have documents showing the first closed-session motorsport taking place in 1958, under the auspices of the Swansea Motor Club. Today, the circuit hosts a variety of events including track days, driving experiences, and testing and development.
The circuit is family-owned and run, and it boasts a fantastic enthusiast atmosphere, which the Llandow Laps films will aim to showcase. Measuring a distance of 1.45 kilometres (0.9 miles), the lap record of 41.4 seconds was set by Martin Jessopp in 2009, riding a Ducati 1198R. It’s a venue well known to and loved by Chris Harris, who has driven the circuit many times, in a host of different cars.
Season One schedule
Episodes of Llandow Laps will be released fortnightly on our YouTube channel, starting with the first film on Sunday 28 January, which stars two of the best grand tourers around. The schedule for the rest of the first season is set out below.
Sunday 28th January - Episode 1: The Grand Tourers
Sunday 11th February - Episode 2: The Convertibles
Sunday 25th February - Episode 3: The Supercars
Sunday 10th March - Episode 4: The Small Cars
Sunday 24th March - Episode 5: The Restomods