A FORMER Formula 1 driver turned TV analyst will get behind the wheel of a classic F1 car at Thruxton's 50th anniversary celebrations next month.

Formula 1 will return to Thruxton for the first time since 1993 at the circuit's 50th Anniversary Celebration weekend on June and 3 with former F1 racer Karun Chandhok set to take the reins of a Williams FW08C.

Karun, now an analyst Channel 4's coverage of Formula 1, said: “It looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun and I’m really excited for the event.

“I’ve driven the Williams FW08C a few times before. It’s a very special car with its manual gearbox and Ford DFV engine, which is probably the most important engine ever produced in Formula 1 and it still sounds as good as it did all those years ago.

"It’s a truly iconic piece of kit, and there aren’t many opportunities to see these legendary cars in action anymore.

“I’ll be giving it a blast at the Monaco Historic Grand Prix before Thruxton’s 50th, which will serve as a nice warm-up. I’d obviously love to open it up properly, but at the same time, I’m very conscious that this car is being wheeled out of a museum for me.

"That said, as a racing driver, you’re never inclined to take it particularly easy, and I’ll certainly do my utmost to put on a real show for everybody watching."

Over the 50th Anniversary Celebration weekend, The Thruxton Centre – Thruxton Circuit’s new, £2 million state-of-the-art hospitality facility – will be officially opened at noon on the Sunday, by 31-time Grand Prix-winner and 1992 Formula 1 World Champion, Nigel Mansell CBE alongside legendary motorsport commentator and journalist, Murray Walker OBE.

There will be 15 races and high-speed demonstrations from a host of iconic two and four-wheeled motor racing machinery, while Mansell’s 1992 Formula 1 World Championship-winning Williams FW14B is also set to be displayed.

At the event, there will also be a funfair, live music, overnight camping and a fireworks display.

Tickets are available from £12 for Saturday entry and £15 for Sunday – or £24 for both days. Sunday grandstand seats are an additional £5. Accompanied children aged 15 and under will be admitted free of charge. For details, go to https://thruxtonracing.co.uk/racing/50th-anniversary or call 01264 882200.