Despite piss-poor weather in the capital over 100,000 spectators turned out on Sunday (June 3) to see one of the most exciting motorsport events ever to hit Irish shores. While there was no competition element to Bavaria City Racing Dublin it did allow Irish fans to get incredibly close to the cars and the day's action was headlined by none other than Jenson Button in his Vodafone-sponsored McLaren-Mercedes Formula One race car.
The anoraks in the crowd (ok, everyone wore anoraks on Sunday) will have noticed that the car driven by Button was the very chassis he won the Canadian Grand Prix in last year, so like the man himself has real race-winning pedigree. His first foray onto the soaking wet circuit was in a McLaren MP4-12C supercar and he wasn't holding back, but he took it easier in his race car first time out.
The slow pace was a little disappointing to be honest, but it turned out he was only warming up, as next time around he didn't hold back, sliding around, doing plenty of gratuitous 360-degree spins and standing starts. Tyre smoke wasn't possible because of the wet conditions but the spectators were treated to the uniquely ear-splitting sound a current Formula One car makes - and plenty of waves from Jenson.
Dutchman Giedo van der Garde gave Button a good run for his money in terms of entertaining the crowds, throwing his Caterham F1 race car around with more abandon from the start. This may not be a front-of-the grid race team as yet, but there's no doubt it's the real deal - and a very serious race car.
In spite of the crowds, it was relatively easy to move from one spot to another, and well worth doing. Terry Grant and Mattie Griffin entertained the crowds with their skilled stunts along the route while the biggest cheers were reserved for the Irish lads in their high-powered drift cars - sliding skilfully close to the barriers lining the route.
Some of the track cars looked a little out of depth - such as the Le Mans ready Spyker and the race-prepared Porsche 911 GT3 RSR - but their presence still added to the event. Others, such as the WRC MINI and the brutally quick Citroen C4 rallycross car, did their best to create a spectacle. Even the historic Group B rally cars put on decent show - resulting in the Rothmans-liveried Metro 6R4 having a minor 'off'.
Regardless of the weather, the spectators appeared to really enjoy the event, as did the drivers. Hopefully we'll see it back in Dublin again next year.