Meanwhile at Brooklands

The DaimlerChrysler Group will this weekend open a new "brand experience centre" at Brooklands, in Weybridge, Surrey. The 155-acre Mercedes-Benz World will offer customers the chance to drive on a 1.5-mile road course and on a 10-acre off-road area. At the centre of the development is a building housing an interactive world to show visitors in the passion, heritage, values and innovation of the Mercedes-Benz brand. The venue is expected to pull in 300,000 people each year and the aim is for Mercedes-Benz to sell some of them cars. The facility includes an upscale restaurant and conference facilities for 300 delegates. The site includes stretches of the original Brooklands racing circuit.

Brooklands was the world's first permanent racing circuit when it opened in 1907. It was designed to help the British automobile industry develop because Britain had a disadvantage as a result of a 1903 ban on road racing. Brooklands also played an important role in the development of British aviation as there was an airfield located within the racing circuit. The track's crowd capacity was 250,000 and for the next 30 years Brooklands was the home of British racing. Sadly during World War II the aviation factories became a target for bombing raids and sections of the famous banking were demolished in an attempt to camouflage the facility. After the war the damage was such that Brooklands could not be revived.

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