Goodwood Revival Race Meeting 2003 - Preview
The sixth Goodwood Revival is set to be the most spectacular yet. Key innovations for 2003 centre around the sports car races, with a new event for small-capacity 1950s cars and a reworked field of production-based GT cars offering jewel-like specialist endurance racers of the 1960s.
A new-look Fordwater Trophy will focus on special slippery-bodied sports and GT cars that were engineered for endurance racing at high-speed circuits such as Monza and Le Mans. Standard production sports cars were fitted with magnificent wind-cheating bodywork, while some manufacturers engineered bespoke sports and GT cars to take the spoils in the classes for smaller-capacity cars. The Revival will bring together a grid of these little-seen endurance racers, featuring cars such as the Alfa Romeo Giulia TZ1 and TZ2, Morgan SLR and Porsche-Abarth Carrera GTL, as well as British specials such as Austin Healey Sprites with Le Mans, Sebring and ‘Speedwell’ bodywork, MGA Twin Cam Le Mans, WSM GT, Triumph TRS and Sunbeam Harrington Le Mans. French manufacturers in particular built fabulous cars in order to challenge for an illustrious class win at Le Mans. It is expected that delicate aerodynes from Abarth, Alpine and Panhard will also be persuaded to take to the track.
Complementing these sleek GT cars will be the Madgwick Cup, a new race for specialist small-capacity sports-racing cars not greater than 2.5-litres. Virtually every weekend throughout its active years, Goodwood staged club races for grids full of predominantly British-built minimalist open racers. In 2003 the Revival will recreate this archetypal Goodwood Members’ race with Lotus 11, 15 and 17 lining up against Lola Mk1, Elva and Kieft, as well as Cooper T39 ‘Bobtail’ and T49 ‘Monaco’, all using Climax power. Providing stiff opposition will be a legion of European thoroughbreds including Porsche 550A Spyder and RSK, Maserati 150, 200 and 250S, Stanguellini and Borgward. In recent years these cars have only rarely been included in the Sussex Trophy race, having to make way for such powerful and spectacular sports-racing cars as the Jaguar D-type, Ferrari Testa Rossa, Lister-Jaguar, Aston Martin DBR1 and Maserati T61 ‘Birdcage’. In 2003 the small-capacity cars are certain to provide a fabulous dice as they swarm around the circuit en masse.
The one-hour, two-driver Royal Automobile Club TT Celebration race remains the jewel in the Revival crown. Nowhere else in the World will you see such a grid of super-rare GT cars racing in anger, all driven by great aces from the past and present. The grid this year will feature the fastest and most competitive cars since the event’s inception. Alongside the usual £30 million collection of Jaguar E-type Lightweight, Ferrari 250 GT SWB, GTO and 330 LMB, AC Cobra, Aston Martin Project car and Chevrolet Corvette, it is hoped that some of the original Shelby American Cobra Daytonas will be persuaded to race for the first time in Europe since the 1960s. Last year’s winners, ex Formula 1 stars Patrick Tambay and Henri Pescarolo, will be keen to defend their honour against the likes of Le Mans winners Emanuele Pirro and Derek Bell, F1 aces Sir Stirling Moss, Jochen Mass and Jackie Oliver, Indycar legend Bobby Rahal, plus touring car champions Frank Sytner and Jason Plato.
Following last year’s thrilling St Mary’s Trophy saloon car race exclusively for 1950s machinery, in 2003 it’s the turn of the 1960s cars once again. For the first time, a trio of Alfa Romeo 1600 GTAs will spice up the customary battle at the front between Lotus Cortinas, Mini Coopers, Jaguar Mk2s, plus Ford Galaxies and Falcons. Joining them will be Ford Anglia 105E, Hillman Imp, Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti Super and Mercedes-Benz 300SE, along with the only Studebaker Lark Daytona racing in Europe. The race remains a two-driver battle, with the owner of each car sharing with a celebrity touring car driver. Gerry Marshall, Win Percy, John Rhodes, Gabriele Tarquini, Tony Lanfranchi, Rauno Aaltonen, Ivan Capelli, John Fitzpatrick, Tiff Needell, Tony Dron, Barrie ‘Whizzo Williams and Tony Jardine are just some of the drivers who have already expressed an interest in taking part.
The special Freddie March Memorial Trophy – with cars charging into the dusk in a 90 minute two-driver race – proved a great success in 2002 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the legendary Goodwood Nine Hour Race. This year, in accordance with Goodwood’s planning agreement with Chichester Council, the race reverts to its more usual format of a 12-lap sprint, featuring classic sports-racing cars such as Jaguar C-type, Aston Martin DB3S, Maserati A6GCS, Ferrari, Lotus and Frazer Nash.
The Whitsun Trophy is sure to provide a great spectacle and some close racing. This year will see a full grid of ‘big banger’ sports prototypes unleashing upwards of 10,000bhp. The legendary Ford GT40 features strongly, with at least half a dozen taking part, including IRL driver Darren Manning back to defend last year’s win. Providing stiff opposition will be legions of Ferrari prototypes, Lotus 30s and McLaren-Chevrolet M1s. It is also hoped that a couple of original Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sports and Cooper-based King Cobras will be persuaded across the Atlantic to join the action.
The Glover Trophy for 1960s Formula 1 cars will see more genuine 1.5-litre GP cars racing than ever before. Rather than featuring powerful Tasman-spec cars at the front of the field, the entry will focus on genuine F1 cars using fabulous-sounding V8 engines. The Revival’s fastest race will be even closer, noisier and more exciting than ever.
The Chichester Cup for Formula Junior cars heralds a welcome return for the earliest front-engined cars, which last appeared at the Revival in 2000. With so many Juniors competing internationally, we change the specification of the race every year, to give it a new look and character. Expect the usual thrills and spills from these small-capacity single seaters.
The Revival’s unique Period Transport Corps will continue to supply our unique taxi service for competitors and VIPs. Last year we had around 230 pre-1966 vehicles servicing the site, from fleets of WW2 Jeeps and 1950s lorries to an array of classic passenger cars and Rolls-Royce limousines. New for 2003, a fleet of classic buses will provide a dedicated service around the perimeter road, taking visitors to the prime viewing locations all around the circuit. There is even an ultra-rare Fiat Multipla miniature people carrier to transport Media guests – it’s a big operation.
The Revival is, of course, the only sporting event in the world set entirely to a period theme. It has the potential to grow enormously as a truly unique family day out. Support for the ‘magical step back in time’ experience grows every year, with more and more spectators and competitors getting into the effervescent Goodwood spirit. With a packed schedule of exciting racing and a paddock brimming with 1950s nostalgia, this year’s Revival is sure to be more popular than ever.
The Goodwood Revival is held at Goodwood Circuit on 5,6,7 September 2003. Advance tickets can be purchased from the office TEL 01243 755055, FAX 01243 755058. Or -
For full details of all the events at Goodwood please visit their excellent website www.goodwood.co.uk
All main shots by the kindest permission of Roger Dixon and remain his strictly copyrighted material.
Story: Goodwood Events