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National novelties: Fassbender shares Fiesta with ex-F1 drivers and 700 for Rabagliati

A Hollywood star joining two ex-Formula 1 drivers in the Mondello Park Fiesta six-hour enduro and a 700th outing for one racer in their Formula Junior machine are some of the more unusual recent national motorsport stories

Mondello Tommy Michael David

Famous faces: Fassbender joins Byrne and Kennedy

Hollywood film star Michael Fassbender was the focal point of last weekend’s Mondello Park Fiesta six-hour race, where he teamed up with ex-Formula 1 drivers Tommy Byrne (above left) and David Kennedy (right).

While Byrne and Kennedy are familiar figures at the event, it was Fassbender's first outing. The trio could only qualify 17th, before Byrne had to take avoiding action with a spinning car on the opening lap and they eventually finished ninth.

“This race was always on the list to do,” said European Le Mans Series driver Fassbender. “I have been trying to get here for the last four years, when I met Tommy in Daytona, but I was always busy!”

Up at the front, the three Rabbitt brothers – Barry, Shane and Keith – snatched the lead in the closing stages with an innovative strategy. With the safety car staying out longer than expected to clean up an oil spill, they pitted three times in four laps to refuel and change tyres, without falling off the lead lap.

Rabagliati's milestone: 700 Alexis races

Rabagliati's first race in the Alexis came in 1989

Photo by: Red Water Images

Rabagliati's first race in the Alexis came in 1989

Formula Junior Historic Racing Association chairman Duncan Rabagliati achieved another milestone at the Algarve Classic Festival a fortnight ago when he started his 700th race in the unique Alexis HF1, chassis HF101 built by Bill Harris and Alex Francis for the 1960 season.

'The Flying Carrot', as the BMC-engined machine is nicknamed, has been Rabagliati’s principal steed since he first raced it at Lydden Hill in September 1989.

Rabagliati – who won his class in this year’s Lurani Trophy championship – credits much of the car’s success to ace spannerman Iain Rowley “who has kept it going” for many years.

Stratos on the stages: Perez's preparation

Perez's outing in Lancia beast was ahead of Roger Albert Clark Rally later this month

Photo by: Paul Lawrence

Perez's outing in Lancia beast was ahead of Roger Albert Clark Rally later this month

Seb Perez thrilled Yorkshire rally fans on Sunday by taking his Lancia Stratos out on the Malton Forest Rally as a final shakedown event ahead of the Roger Albert Clark Rally.

It was the first time in the UK forests for the Stratos since 2017 and Perez used the day to get used to the Italian supercar, ahead of the five-day marathon at the end of this month.

Pics of the week:

The sun sets over the field in this year's Walter Hayes Trophy final

Photo by: JEP

The sun sets over the field in this year's Walter Hayes Trophy final

The WHT Allcomers support races attracted a very diverse mix of cars

Photo by: Steve Jones

The WHT Allcomers support races attracted a very diverse mix of cars

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