Ferrari California Experience for 50 deserving children at Silverstone

Silverstone – On the 4th May 2010 some of the UK’s most deserving children received a very special treat courtesy of Ferrari North Europe, in partnership with the British Racing Drivers’ Club. 50 youngsters were taken around the iconic Silverstone Circuit in a fleet of Ferrari California sports cars, chauffeured by professional drivers and talented young members of the BRDC’s ‘SuperStars’ scheme. Also taking the wheel were Fifth Gear presenter Jason Plato and Pink Floyd drummer and noted Ferrari enthusiast, Nick Mason.

Also in attendance was a very special guest from Italy – Ferrari driver Marc Gené who spent time talking to the children about their favourite Ferraris and what it’s like to be a Formula One driver. The children were all nominated by two charities, Starlight, which brightens the lives of seriously and terminally ill children by granting their wishes, and the UK automotive industry charity, BEN.

Aged from six to 16, the children had journeyed from all parts of the UK to attend the Ferrari California experience and each had a different story to tell. Some are bravely battling illness; others have devoted themselves to caring for family members. All were united in enjoying an incredible day that left a lasting impression on all who attended. Whilst each child was treated to a 15-minute passenger ride, their families were given unique access to the exclusive BRDC Clubhouse, which is decorated with evocative images of racing cars and memorabilia charting Silverstone’s illustrious history.

A different kind of driving experience was on offer thanks to a giant Hot Wheels track which entertained children throughout the morning, while children also had the chance to get creative and graffiti their own Ferrari California on a YrWall, the world’s first digital graffiti wall. Meanwhile acclaimed contemporary artist Ian Cook was busy outside using remote control cars to create a picture of a Ferrari California, with some of the children also helping him paint the car by remote control cars!

Among those enjoying the day was 7-year-old Drew James from Swanley in Kent. Said his mother, Debbie: “Drew has been really sick with acute myeloid leukaemia and has fought hard for his life. He lost his hair during his treatment and of course there have been lots of tears along the way. We were blown away by everything that was done for us today. The effect it has had on Drew is immeasurable. As we left he told me “That was awesome!” and it really was. On behalf of all the children, we can’t thank Ferrari, Starlight and everyone else concerned enough.”

From top:
1) Ferrari Driver Marc Gene and Max-Lee Phipps in the BRDC clubhouse at Silverstone
2) Nick Mason and Grace Black in a Ferrari California at Silverstone
3) Ferrari California experience at Silverstone for children from Starlight and BEN – 04 May 2010