Update [Wed 5th Jul, 2023 13:35 BST]: It has been confirmed that June's British Racing Greats event has raised £100,000, to be split evenly between SpecialEffect and Solving Kids’ Cancer UK. There's still time to donate here – if the total reaches £110,000, then the event will return in 2024.
Original Story [Thu 8th Jun, 2023 15:35 BST]: Some of the biggest video game racing franchises recently teamed up with supercar enthusiasts at Donington Park Circuit in the UK to raise money for the charities SpecialEffect and Solving Kids’ Cancer UK.
The inaugural British Racing Greats event took place on June 1st and saw the likes of OutRun 2, DiRT, Team Sonic Racing and Forza rub shoulders with real-life sports cars – as well as Jodie Kidd (Kidd in a Sweet Shop) and Ben Collins ('The Stig' from Top Gear), both of whom took visitors on hot laps around the historic Leicestershire circuit.
The event was supported by a wide range of companies, including PlayStation, Sega, 505 Games, PlayGround Games, EA, Stainless Games, Codemasters, Criterion, Coat Sink and Jagex.
Sumo Digital – the studio behind Team Sonic Racing and the outfit responsible for the sublime OutRun 2 Xbox port – were also in attendance. "It’s always great to see the games industry come together and whenever there are charities involved, they do it exceptionally well,” said Darren Mills, Sumo Group Co-Founder. "The event was a real spectacle - the best of the games industry meets motorsports and supercars, a dream combination! It was an amazing day with great people, great entertainment and, most importantly, fantastic support for the charities. We'd like to thank everyone who came along and supported the event."
Outside of watching high-speed cars race around the track where Ayrton Senna performed the greatest opening lap in F1 history and lifted a Sonic the Hedgehog trophy, those who attended were able to try out a range of video games – including the coin-op version of OutRun 2 – as well as purchase some seriously nice merch.
The event supports the amazing work done by SpecialEffect – a UK charity which seeks to help people with physical disabilities to play video games – and Solving Kids’ Cancer UK, a charity that supports children and families affected by neuroblastoma.
“We are so proud to be a charity partner in the first-ever British Racing Greats event alongside our very special friends from SpecialEffect,” said Gail Jackson, CEO of Solving Kids’ Cancer UK. “Not only was this fantastic event an opportunity to celebrate some of the best driving games ever made, it was a unique opportunity for both charities to showcase the important work that we both do and raise vital funds to help us continue."
Nick Streeter, Fundraiser for SpecialEffect, added: “Everyone at SpecialEffect can’t thank each person and company enough for being part of games industry and charity history with British Racing Greats. To see the smiles of our families alongside every single person there will live long in the memory. As demand increases for the help of SpecialEffect events like British Racing Greats really do make a life-changing difference with the funds and awareness raised.”