It’s that time again. Clocks are going forward, the sky is blue and all’s well with the world. Perhaps that’s overstating the case a little, but this week, in a corner of West Sussex that is forever (British Racing) green, Lord March unveiled his plans for this summer’s Festival of Speed. As usual the event is a mix of old and new, with the latest supercars mixing it with veterans from the dawn of motoring time and examples of modern F1, saloon and Le Mans cars.
As always the Goodwood Road Racing Company give the event a Theme. This year it’s ‘Racing for Glory – 100 years of Grand Prix’. As ‘any fule kno’, the first GP was held in France (Le Mans actually) in 1906 and the aim of the organisers is to bring as many significant cars and drivers as possible together to celebrate that fact. So starting with a 1906 Mercedes you can expect a multi-coloured history lesson via the Bugattis and Alfa Romeos of the 1920s, through the Silver Arrow Mercedes and Auto Unions of the ‘30s, the Vanwalls, Ferraris and Maseratis of the '50s, BRMs, Lotuses and Coopers of the ‘60s and so on. Right up to date with current F1 teams from BMW, Ferrari, Honda, McLaren-Mercedes, Red Bull, Renault, Toyota and Williams.
And as in Festivals past, many of the current race or test drivers will be on hand to drive the cars and sign autographs.
Other anniversaries to be celebrated will include 100 years of that fabulous road-race around Sicily, the Targa Florio, (and yes, Nino Vaccarella will be there), and 40 years of the TransAm and CanAm series from the United States and Canada. Cars to be demonstrated in these categories will include the Boss 302 Mustang and Plymouth Barracuda, and on the two-seater prototype front the original Lola T70 Spyder and orange McLaren M8s. And Porsche have promised the 1,000 BHP 917/30 that Derek Bell has demonstrated in the past.
Renault – riding high on Formula One success this year – will have the honour of providing the sculpture in front of Goodwood House, while the World Rally Championship teams will be present in force not only in the paddock and up the hill, but also on the popular Forest Rally Stage – a new feature for 2005 that was designed to provide even more entertainment on the day as well as drawing crowds away from the track areas. Legendary rally champion Hannu Mikkola is acting as Goodwood’s consultant on a forestry stage that has been totally revised and lengthened over the winter.
Manufacturer involvement has always been at the heart of the success of the Goodwood Festival, and as before the world’s manufacturers will be opening their museum doors to the organisers. An Editor’s Choice would include:
1924 Alfa Romeo P2
1972 Alfa Romeo 33 TT3
1959 Aston Martin DBR1
2005 Aston Martin DBR9
1935 Auto Union Type A
1988 Audi Quattro TransAm
1977 BMW 2002 Gp 5 Turbo
1973 Tyrrell Cosworth 006
1961 Ferrari 250 TRI/61 Le Mans 24 Hours Winner
1972 Ferrari 312PB
1965 Ford GT40 MKII
1966 Lola T70 Spyder CanAm
1963 Jaguar E-Type lightweight ‘low-drag’
1939 Mercedes-Benz W154 GP
1970 Porsche 908/3
1973 Porsche 911 RSR
And many more!
The Supercar Run is always an opportunity to see today’s high performance cars driven on the track in the manner they were designed for, away from the glass and chrome of the showroom. The exciting news is that Ferrari will be using the opportunity to launch the wonderful F599 GTB in the UK, and will also have the ‘super-Enzo’ FXX. Bugatti will have a Veyron, Audi are hoping to bring the new R8 road supercar, and racing, rallying and bespoke engineering company bar-none Prodrive will have their one-off (fully functioning) P2 concept car.
The 12th Cartier ‘Style et Luxe’ concours will be celebrating 40 years of the Lamborghini Miura, as well as having a real ‘Pebble’ car entered, the one-off ‘Round Door Rolls’ built by Belgian coachbuilder Henri Jonckheere in the 1930s. This year’s celebrity judges include long-time car fans George Lucas and David Linley.
Bonhams will be having their Friday auction as usual, an early entry being the 1966 AC Cobra Mk II, one of only 42 RHD MkIIs built for the British market.
1969 Lamborghini Miura P400S Jota Replica
Bugatti and Maserati - 'Les Grandes Marques'
1966 AC Cobra Mk II - entered in the Auction
Valentine Lindsay and 1955 Jaguar D-Type
Sir Stirling Moss reunited with a 1958 Aston Martin DBR1
Justin Law swaps his Lister Jaguar Costin Coupe for something more leisurely
As in 2005, all days of the Festival will be for advance ticket holders only - no tickets will be for sale on the gate. Numbers are limited so it is advisable to book early.
The Festival is held at Goodwood House from Friday 7th July to Sunday 9th July inclusive.
To book your tickets for the Festival, please either telephone the Booking Office on +44 1243 755055 or buy on-line by visiting the Online Shopping & Tickets section of www.goodwood.co.uk. You will also find the latest news and press releases for this and the later Revival race meeting at Goodwood Circuit, to be held from 1 - 3 September 2006.
Story/Photos: Steve Wakefield
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