This weekend, Spa-Francorchamps is hosting a historic and prestigious weekend: Spa Classic ! Which shared the formation of MEC Auto, located in Baelen, who entered in particular the legendary Ford GT40 for the boss of Ford at world level: Jim Farley!
The history of motorsport in all its glory! This weekend, Spa-Francorchamps reopened the history book by hosting the Spa-Classic, a prestigious rally organized by the French company Peter Auto. Prototypes, GTs, touring cars, and even Formula 1 from the 1990s, the panel was unique, with cars on the track that rocked the youth of many motorcycle fans.
Back then motor racing was the preserve of the international teams that have long made it special. And who travel Europe, even the world, to help owners, generally rather rich, who have chosen to revive machines that have become legends.
A relationship of trust with MEC Auto
This is the case of the MEC Auto design of the brothers Stefan and Mike Kupka, based in Baelen, which has been ubiquitous in the world of historic motorsport for many years. And the least we can say is that MEC Auto is famous, so much so that we find within the team… CEO, translation General Manager, of Ford worldwide, Mr Jim Farley! But how did such a person from the automotive industry, of American nationality, end up in Baelen? “Jim Farley was sent to us by an American tuner friend who was looking for someone to take care of his Lola in the 24 Hours of Le Mans Classic. The car came well, but it was too late. We were at Francorchamps. test but it had serious problems. For Jim Farley, we did rebuilt the engine in four days. The car came to Le Mans without an engine! It was delivered to the site, we installed it and finished the race. I think he really appreciated it”says Mike Kupka of MEC Auto.
Jim Farley presented more than one event at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in this year, Jim Farley is full of praise for our national anthem. Which, whatever the car used, is quite a challenge. “It’s the same as my circuit at home in Europe. MEC Auto is established in this area, and I myself lived for three years in Brussels. When I was responsible for Ford Europe, I left and lived in Germany, not far from here. So it’s my home circuit .. .”explains Jim Farley, CEO of Ford.
Above all, don’t go out!
And the CEO of Ford worldwide, it’s obviously a legendary car from the brand he’s used to driving: the GT40! The Bolide that wrote the legend of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and of which Jim Farley’s copy is completely authentic. To help him paint the quintessence, the American can count on the support of a former F1 driver, five-time winner of the 24 Hours of Business and on the podium of the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2001: Eric van de Poele in person. . “The only reserve that we still pay more attention to is not to make contact and avoid going off the road. We are all enthusiastic and for the public, it’s amazing to see these cars on the track and to hear them. Let’s chase them! The idea is not to follow the last hundredth of a second at any cost or go crazy”explains pilot Eric Van de Poele.
Jim Farley, “carboy”
For Jim Farley, motorsport is a real way, so much so that the CEO of Ford participates in historic and modern races. When we love, we don’t count. “I don’t expect anything from the race here, especially since I have an important meeting at Ford early next week. I will do my best. Now I practice racing professionally, with endurance, and I’m going faster and faster. , even if I’m getting old and always be bigger! In a few weeks, there will be the Le Mans Classic, in which I will compete with Eric van de Poele. So, this Spa race is used to fire up the car … and the pilot. !”, explains Jim Farley.
For the MEC Auto design, having people like Jim Farley and Eric van de Poele at its center is clearly an honor. Without this raising any special problem. “Jim Farley is a ‘car guy’ who is crazy about cars. He is in his job and in his hobby too.”says Mike Kupka.
As you have understood, historical motorsport is above all a matter of passion that brings together men, some well-known, others not at all. But once on the track, it’s the race that inevitably takes place, and everything else becomes random. (Vincent Franssen)