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Astonishing variety of cars lined up for Cholmondeley Pagaent of Power

Organisers of the Cholmondeley Pageant of Power, the UK's biggest celebration of power and speed, have confirmed an eclectic mix of more than 150 high-octane race and road cars for the event's timed on-track sessions and parade runs.

Some historically-significant race cars will compete alongside modern supercars on the venue's testing 1.2-mile circuit, as well as being on view in the paddocks throughout the event. Hundreds of other cars will also feature in static displays, and organisers say the combined value of the vehicles at the Pageant will exceed £150million.

The three-day Pageant takes place on the Cholmondeley Estate near Crewe in Cheshire, from 15 to 17 July (www.cpop.co.uk).

Perhaps the most famous of all the entrants taking to Cholmondeley's track will be the legendary Auto Union D-Type from 1938, one of the few iconic German 'Silver Arrow' Grand Prix cars, which was raced by Hans Stuck and Rudolf Haase. With a two-stage supercharged V12 engine producing some 485bhp, the Auto Union D-Type promises to be a huge draw for Pageant crowds during a rare public appearance. The car is believed to be worth more than £9million, and is the most valuable vehicle at the event.

Making its public debut will be the newly-restored, one and only factory-built Low Drag Lightweight Jaguar E-Type. This car crashed at the Autodrome de Linas-Montlhéry race circuit, just outside Paris, in 1964 and was so badly damaged that a complete restoration was thought to be impossible. But 47 years later, and after more than 7,000 hours of work, the car has been restored to its original state, using more than 90 per cent of the original parts. The car will join a host of other E-Types for a display at the Pageant to celebrate the 50th anniversary of this iconic Jaguar.

Of particular interest to motor racing enthusiasts will be the group of four-wheel drive F1 cars. The four examples on display are rare for a reason: the Lotus 63, for example, was an experimental Formula One car designed by Colin Chapman for the 1969 season, but after just a single test run, drivers Graham Hill and Jochen Rindt flatly refused to drive the car due to safety concerns. Hill even described the car as a 'death trap'.

An event full of beautiful cars wouldn't be complete without some Italian metal, and this year the Pageant plays host to a bumper crop, led by the Maserati Tipo 61 'Birdcage'. Using an intricate, tubular space-frame chassis, the car was lighter and more rigid than other sports cars at the time, and the complex web of welded steel tubes earned the car its iconic 'Birdcage' moniker.

Classic Ferraris also make an appearance, including the Ferrari 330 P3 raced by John Surtees and Mike Parkes at the 1,000km of Monza in 1966. The car not only started on pole position, it also finished in first place and posted the fastest lap of the race. The Prancing Horse of Ferrari also features on the front of a number of more modern cars bidding for the fastest lap time, including the new Ferrari 458 GT3 race car. Although the 458 GT3 is racing in the 2011 British GT Championship, there won't get a better chance to get close to the car than at the Cholmondeley Pageant.

One of the most famous periods for endurance racing was mid-1960s, when Ferrari and Ford fought for supremacy. A Ford GT40 race car from that era will be taking to the Cholmondeley circuit throughout the weekend, participating in the same Sports Racing Car class as the Ferrari 330 P3.

Other legendary endurance racers making an appearance include the Porsche 917K in Gulf colours, and the Bentley Speed 8 which won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2003.

The Pageant is also a great place to appreciate motor racing's quirkier side, with some successful, and less successful, race cars on display or taking to the track. One of these more unconventional cars is the Allard Farrelac, a British racing car from the 1950s based on the Allard J2X, but with a 6.4-litre Cadillac-sourced V8 engine and a power output in excess of 400bhp. The car is now a regular winner on the historic race scene.

Weirdest and most wonderful of all is a collection of early 20th-century cars that are powered by aeroplane engines. The BMW 'Brutus' is one such car, with an interesting back-story. Germany was forbidden from creating military aircraft after World War I, so, with large numbers of 12-cylinder 46-litre engines spare, this experimental project was created. While 'Brutus' is normally on display at the Auto & Technik Museum in Sinsheim, Germany, this automotive marvel will be making a special trip to the UK to wow the Cholmondeley crowds.

James Hall, Event Director for the Cholmondeley Pageant of Power, commented, "There are hundreds of cars appearing at the event this year, each with its own unique history. Most of have been raced, many have won, and some have even been crashed. But the common denominator that unites them all is their star quality - every single car at the Pageant is special, both for participating drivers and spectators, and it's this varied selection of characterful cars that keeps visitors coming back for more, year after year."

The Pageant is located in the Cholmondeley Estate in Cheshire, and was created to celebrate power and performance in its many forms. Winning the Best Tourist Event in Cheshire, and drawing in more than 50,000 visitors in 2010, the Pageant of Power has fast gained a reputation that makes early booking essential.

Ticket booking details and further event information can be found at www.cpop.co.uk or by calling the ticket hotline on 01829 772 432.

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