SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Kevin Benedict, Rich Waidmann, Pat Romanski, Michael Jannery, Javier Paniza

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Lewis Hamilton set to race in his MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team car at Top Gear Festival Barbados

TORONTO, March 24, 2014 /CNW/ - Top Gear Festival Barbados and the Barbados Tourism Authority announced today that Lewis Hamilton will appear on track behind the wheel of his MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One car during an adrenaline-fuelled motoring weekend on 17 & 18 May.

Fans can expect to hear the spine-tingling roar of the F1 W04's Mercedes-Benz Formula One engine as the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS car makes history with its Caribbean debut by appearing at the newly renovated Bushy Park Circuit.

Formula One aficionados and motoring enthusiasts alike will see Lewis in action, doing what he does best, as he tears around the track in this extraordinary car. This is their chance to witness Lewis drive in only his second season with Mercedes - having joined the Silver Arrows works team for the 2013 season - and achieving five pole positions in his F1 W04.

Petra Roach, Vice President of the Barbados Tourism Authority UK, commented: "Following the announcement of Lewis joining the already star-studded Top Gear Festival Barbados line up, we now bring you the exciting news that we are uniting Lewis Hamilton and his MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One car at Bushy Park Circuit!"

She continued: "By bringing the F1 W04 to Barbados, we're bringing the thrill of Formula One to the festival. Having been driven by Lewis and his team mate Nico Rosberg during last year's season, it achieved three race wins, nine podium appearances and eight pole positions. Riding on this wave of success, we're excited to bring the car to Barbados for an unmissable weekend of top racing action."

Petrol-heads are in for a for a thrilling weekend of high-octane motoring action as Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond take part in a non-stop schedule of motoring antics that will see The Stig and the Top Gear Live Stunt Driving Team take to the track in a series of thrilling stunts, races and challenges as well as legendary drivers from Global Rally Cross compete in the first round of their 2014 season.

Tickets to this thrilling motoring weekend are limited. Visitors are encouraged to book early so as not to miss the most exciting new event on Barbados' 2014 entertainment and motoring calendar. Bushy Park is a short drive from the island's capital Bridgetown and from the international airport.

Tickets are on sale and priced at BBD$75 (approx. £22) for a general admission ticket, BBD$200 (approx. £59) for a Club House ticket and BBD$500 (approx. £149) for a VIP Marquee ticket. Children's tickets are available, and start from BBD$50 (approx. £15) for a general admission ticket.  For more information on ticket packages or to book visit www.topgearfestivalbarbados.com

About Barbados
The island of Barbados offers the most authentic Caribbean experience with its exceptionally rich culture and history rooted in remarkable landscapes.  Rated as one of the world's sexiest beaches in 2008 by Concierge.com; Barbados' Crane Beach in St. Philip stands as a premier destination for travellers.  Barbados is also the first Zagat-rated Caribbean island and is known as the culinary capital of the Caribbean. Barbados has hosted several world class events including: The annual Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival; the 2006 PGA World Golf Championships-Barbados World Cup, the ICC Cricket World Cup Finals in 2007, the Sentebale Charity Polo match with Prince Harry of Wales in 2010, and the ICC Twenty20 Cricket Finals for 2010, and the Rihanna LOUD concert in 2012. Accommodations range from picturesque plantation houses and villas, to quaint bed and breakfasts and award-winning, five-star resorts. Grantley Adams International Airport offers even more non-stop and direct service from a growing number of U.S. cities via Jet Blue and American Airlines, making Barbados the true gateway to the Eastern CaribbeanBarbados was voted eighth in the World by Trip Advisor's '2008 Travellers Choice Destination Awards' in its Top 100 Destinations category.  For more information on travel to Barbados, visit www.visitbarbados.org, follow on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/VisitBarbados, via Twitter @Barbados.

Top Gear Live & Top Gear Festival
Offering a variation on more traditional motor shows Top Gear Live and Top Gear Festival brings the spirit of the TV programme to the live events arena allowing fans to immerse themselves in their passion for Top Gear and motoring in general. Starring Jeremy Clarkson, James May, Richard Hammond and The Stig the event features an exhilarating mix of stunts, supercars and challenges. Top Gear Live has been running world tours since 2008 entertaining over 1.8 million visitors. Note: the format of the event and presenter line-up can vary in different countries. Top Gear Live is a joint venture between BBC Worldwide and Brand Events Ltd.

Brand Events UK
Brand Events was formed in 1999 and is the UK's most successful innovator in events and exhibitions.  Since then it has launched some of the UK's most popular consumer events including Top Gear Live and, most recently the CarFest North and South events hosted by BBC broadcaster Chris Evans which have raised more than £2m for BBC Children in Need.

BBC Worldwide Ltd.
BBC Worldwide Limited is the main commercial arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The company exists to exploit the value of the BBC's assets for the benefit of the licence fee payer and invest in public service programming in return for rights. The company has five core businesses: Channels, Content & Production, Sales & Distribution, Consumer Products and Global Brands. In 2011/12, BBC Worldwide generated headline profits of £155 million on headline sales of £1085 million and returned £216 million to the BBC. For more detailed performance information please see our Annual Review website:
www.bbcworldwide.com/annualreview

SOURCE Barbados Tourism Authority

Image with caption: "Lewis Hamilton set to race in his MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team car at Top Gear Festival Barbados (CNW Group/Barbados Tourism Authority)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140324_C6798_PHOTO_EN_38267.jpg

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