Goodwood Revival 2010 – Preview

With just two weeks to go till the Goodwood Revival, talk turns to trilby hats and silk stockings, as period outfits are once again de-mothballed and made ready for their annual outing. Meanwhile, anyone who has not yet bought their tickets needs to get a move on. Following last year’s record-breaking 134,000 turnout, spectator numbers are being more tightly controlled and tickets are likely to sell out well before the event. For first-time visitors who are unable to make a three-day event of it, there’s the challenge of deciding which day to opt for: so here are some highlights from each day’s action…

Friday 17 September is the official practice day so, while there’s the chance to see all the competing cars and motorcycles on track, there are no actual races. But there are air displays, and the full circuit-wide ‘theatre’ that is the Goodwood Revival, with bands, actors and parades in support of this year’s tributes to multiple World Champion John Surtees and the marque BRM. There’s also the Bonhams auction of fine cars and automobilia.

On Saturday, as well as the displays and track parades, there will be seven races. First up is the Goodwood Trophy, for ‘sit-up-and-beg’ single-seaters from 1930-50, followed by the Chichester Cup, this year for 1958-62 drum-braked rear-engined Formula Juniors. The two-wheeled Barry Sheene Memorial Trophy is followed by the day’s ‘celebrity’ race – the St Mary’s Trophy for saloon cars of the 1950s. Always a favourite with spectators, this is the one that sees everything from buzzing Austin A35s to thundering Jaguar Mk VIIs. As usual, it’s a two-parter, with celebrity drivers taking the wheel on Saturday, followed by the owner-drivers on Sunday. On Saturday, expect to see the likes of Rauno Aaltonen, Andy Rouse, Derek Bell, Jackie Oliver and Brian Redman in good-natured but extremely determined competition.

Saturday afternoon will see the fastest race of the weekend, with the 1963-66 sports-racing prototypes of the Whitsun Trophy (think Ford GT40 and Lola T70), after which is the Madgwick Cup, a two-driver race for sports-racing cars under 2.5 litres of a type that raced between 1955 and 1960 – typically Lotus 11 and 15, T39 Bobtail and T49 Monaco, and a good helping of more exotic models such as Maserati 200S. The afternoon finishes with the Gordon Trophy for 2.5-litre Grand Prix cars from 1954-1960, and the 75-minute Freddie March Memorial Trophy ‘for cars in the spirit of the Goodwood Nine-Hour races, 1952-1955’. Expect to see Jaguar C-type, Aston Martin DB3 and DB3S, Austin-Healey 100S, Ferrari 750, Allard and HWM.

Sunday’s highlight is the jewel in the Revival’s crown: the magnificent, one-hour, two-driver Royal Automobile Club TT Celebration race – a breathtaking £100 million grid of rare and valuable closed-cockpit GT cars from 1960 to 1964. From Jaguar E-type lightweight, through Ferrari 250 GTO, GT SWB and 330 LMB, to Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato, the provenance and fame of the cars is matched only by the ‘celebrity’ half of the two-driver pairings: Jochen Mass, Emanuele Pirro, Martin Brundle, Tom Kristensen, Vern Schuppan, Richard Attwood and Henri Pescarolo, to name but a few.

The TT takes place on the Sunday afternoon, following a morning’s racing with the 1960-66 production-based sports and GT cars of the Fordwater Trophy (Austin-Healey Sprites with special Le Mans or ‘Sebring’ bodywork, plus special-bodied cars from the likes of Abarth and Alfa Romeo), and then the 1950-60 front-engined GP cars of the Richmond Trophy, along with the second of the two-part motorcycle and saloon car races.

The weekend closes with the 1961-65 1.5-litre Formula One and Tasman cars of the Glover Trophy; and, finally, the Sussex Trophy for front-engined sportscars from 1955 to 1960. This year, the Sussex Trophy will enjoy the first-ever UK race appearance of the recently restored Jaguar E2A prototype – the legendary car which bridged the gap between the D-type and E-type – and the lucky driver will be regular Classic Driver contributor, Tony Dron; so we can expect to hear more from him afterwards.

Whichever day tickles your fancy (or maybe you’ll treat yourself to a three-day historic motorsport bonanza), do be sure to get your tickets asap, by calling +44 (0)1243 755055, emailing the ticket office on [email protected], or booking online at www.goodwood.com.

Text - Charis Whitcombe
Photos - Classic Driver


ClassicInside - The Classic Driver Newsletter
Free Subscription!