Silverstone Festival pays tribute to Ayrton Senna. GETTY IMAGES

This summer's Silverstone Festival (23-25 August) will honour one of motorsport's most iconic drivers: Ayrton Senna. In a record-breaking career, the legendary Brazilian claimed more race wins at Silverstone than at any other circuit in the world.

Now, in tribute to all his many incredible achievements - and with the full support of both the Senna family and Senna Brands - the Festival is bringing together the biggest and best collection of the three-time World Champion's cars ever assembled in one place. This display will feature many of Senna's revered F1 cars, as well as cars from his earlier formative years, in a celebration of his legacy. The timing of this extraordinary celebration is both significant and poignant. It will be 40 years since the young Brazilian burst onto the F1 scene with the Toleman team in 1984, and 30 years since his tragic accident when racing at Imola on Sunday 1 May 1994. Senna left an indelible mark on Formula 1 during his 10-year career, winning 41 Grands Prix with Lotus and then with McLaren, the team with which he won three World Championships. 

As further proof of his extraordinary speed and uncompromising talent behind the wheel, Senna also set a then-record of 65 pole positions and won an unrivalled six times on the unforgiving harbour streets of Monte Carlo. Still hailed as one of F1's greatest drivers, Senna is revered around the world by drivers and fans alike. The Brazilian's record at Silverstone is equally impressive. Although he only won the British Grand Prix once - with McLaren in 1988 - he achieved more victories at the super-fast Northamptonshire circuit than at any other track in his entire racing career. 

Senna after his Silverstone victory in 1988. GETTY IMAGES
Senna after his Silverstone victory in 1988. GETTY IMAGES

Having come to Europe at the age of 21 to begin his single-seater career with Van Diemen in British Formula Ford 1600, Senna raced for the first time at Silverstone in June 1981. He wasted no time in taking pole position and was then involved in a thrilling slipstream battle for the lead for the entire Grand Prix circuit, only missing out on a famous debut victory when his arch-rival (Rick Morris) jumped over the old Woodcote chicane on the final lap to steal victory. 

Undeterred, the young Senna bounced back to win all three FF2000 races staged at Silverstone in 1982 and then went on to win an incredible six races the following season en route to being crowned British F3 Champion. He raced as Ayrton Senna de Silva - a combination of his mother's and father's names - and many of the headline writers of the day renamed the circuit 'Silvastone'. 

Senna's legacy can still be seen at Silverstone today as, after Imola, the FIA and GPDA undertook a review of track speeds around the world and several of Silverstone's faster corners were re-profiled making the track safer for all competitors. 

"There could be no better track to celebrate the outstanding achievements of Ayrton Senna than Silverstone. He won ten times of his 20 starts at Silverstone and we will honour this extraordinary success with the best collection of Senna cars ever displayed. We are extremely privileged to have the full support of the Senna family and will work with them to ensure that this very special celebration honours one of the sport's greatest stars in a fitting and fantastic way," said Nick Wigley, Silverstone Festival Event Director.

"Ayrton has always had a very strong connection with Silverstone. His motorsport history includes memorable victories at the circuit and he raced for British teams. We are delighted to be part of this year's festival, which is so special as it celebrates 30 years of Senna's legacy," said Bianca Senna, CEO of Senna Brands and niece of the three-time champion. "It's definitely a tribute that will touch fans around the world," she added. 

The Silverstone Festival is a big party with races and everything. SFMEDIA
The Silverstone Festival is a big party with races and everything. SFMEDIA

To further evoke Senna's memories, this year's line-up of 20 stunning retro races includes two spectacular showdowns for the F3 Classic Interseries - packed grids with evocative Formula 3 cars harking back to that memorable year in 1983 when Senna scored those six victories at "Silvastone". Other highlights on the jam-packed three-day programme revive all the golden eras of Formula 1 and 2, Sportscar, GT and Touring Car racing. 

All tickets offer great value for money and include access to both paddocks, open track-side grandstands and an incredible programme of demos, demonstrations, live music and interactive entertainment over the Bank Holiday weekend. 

Off-track highlights include a Fan Zone with F1 team show cars, high-energy stunt shows in the Shift & Drift Zone, a Foodie Fest with chef demos and tasting tent masterclasses, and live music on all three evenings. Sophie Ellis-Bextor tops the bill on Friday night, followed by Brit Award-winning Busted on Saturday and acclaimed singer, songwriter and TV personality, Olly Murs on Sunday. 

A wide range of tickets - including camping, hospitality options and car club display packages - are available at the best prices for those who book now. Full details of all tickets are available here.