And not just any Formula 1 car, but the actual Matra-Ford he used to eventually defeat Jochen Rindt exactly half a century ago, during the British Grand Prix. In fact, this is exactly why the racing veteran is getting once again behind the wheel: to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the race that started the legend.
Decades ago, Stewart’s win over Rindt would have been just another victory (it was the Scot’s fifth win in six races that season) hadn’t it been for the memorable duel between the two, with dozens of lead changes and a forced pit stop that eventually turned the tides.
“The 1969 British Grand Prix was one of the most exciting and enjoyable Formula One races that I ever had,” Stewart said in a statement.
“Almost every lap, we exchanged the lead on the Hanger Straight and going into the 155mph Woodcote corner, which in those days had no chicane. We pointed to each other which side to be passed on, to avoid reducing our lead from the rest of the pack. We exchanged the lead more than 30 times and it was a fantastic race for both of us.”
Having been killed in 1970 during practice for the Italian Grand Prix, Jochen Rindt will not be accompanying Stewart at Silverstone this year. So the Scot will climb on board his car and race alone, to perform a number of high-speed demonstration laps on the weekend of July 26.
The special event has a charity side to it as well, as the Silverstone Classic event will be raising money for Race Against Dementia Fellowship Program, founded by Jackie Stewart himself.