Murray Walker given Lifetime Achievement Award at Silverstone

Tiff Needell hosted a pitlane ceremony with ‘the voice of motorsport’ – and was then joined by Mark Webber, Karun Chandhok and Susie Wolff

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Murray Walker OBE has been honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Silverstone Classic Preview Day – and was later joined in a photocall by Mark Webber, Karun Chandhok and Susie Wolff wearing period race gear.

The award was handed over to Murray in a Silverstone pitlane ceremony (above) hosted by fellow broadcaster Tiff Needell and Nick Wigley, event director of the Silverstone Classic. It was given in recognition of the huge contribution Walker has made to motor sport and, in particular, to the Silverstone circuit – home to the annual British Grand Prix and Silverstone Classic, the world’s biggest classic motor-racing festival.

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‘When we heard that Murray was coming back to his beloved Silverstone to be with us on our Silverstone Classic Preview Day, we thought it would be a great chance to honour his remarkable career,’ said Nick Wigley. ‘His infectious enthusiasm for the sport has always been incredible, and for millions of us he will forever be “the voice of motor sport”. This award is really a little “thank you” from all of us for all the wonderful entertainment he’s provided over the past 70 years.’

Murray, now 94, was at Silverstone with a Channel 4 television crew filming a feature to mark the 70th anniversary of the circuit’s very first race – the RAC International Grand Prix of 1948. Murray actually attended that race – and returned the following year to commentate on Silverstone’s first officially sanctioned British Grand Prix, which will be commemorated this year at the Silverstone Classic with a special track parade of cars that raced in 1948.

‘Silverstone has always meant a heck of a lot to me,’ said Murray. ‘I was here in 1948, and have covered just about everything on wheels since then. I’ve seen the circuit grow from a World War Two bomber base into the fantastic complex that it is today, and it’s great to see quite literally hundreds of the amazing cars I’ve seen racing here still competing at the Silverstone Classic. It’s a unique event, and there’s nothing else quite like it in the world.’

Murray covered the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) for the BBC during the 1990s and, as the son of a TT racer, has always had an equally keen interest in motorcycle racing. Both categories will be out in force come July, with this year’s Classic celebrating 60 years of the ever-popular BTCC and the promise of bike action, too.

All tickets for this year’s Silverstone Classic (July 20-22) must be purchased in advance. All admission provides free access to both Silverstone racing paddocks, all open trackside grandstands, live music concerts on Friday and Saturday evenings (headlined by Soul II Soul and UB40 respectively), air shows, Drive Live test drives, funfair rides and the majority of the family entertainment on offer.

Options for camping and hospitality are also available. Full details of all 2018 ticket prices are detailed on the Silverstone Classic website.

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