If you have ever visited Goodwood for any of its highly popular classic motor sport related events, you’ll want to go again, and if you have never yet taken the plunge, it’s wise to book early! Kim Henson reports from this year’s press preview event…
The Goodwood motor racing circuit was made famous in the 1950s/60s by the exciting races which took place there, with the top drivers of that era competing flat out in some amazing machinery.
In recent years the spirit of those days has been recaptured annually with major events featuring amazing collections of classic cars and their enthusiastic drivers, enthralling crowds who come along to drink in the unique atmosphere as much as to see the wheel-to-wheel racing.
FESTIVAL OF SPEED
The 2013 Goodwood festival of Speed takes place from 12th to 14th July, and this year will celebrate 20 years of what is said to be the world’s most popular motor sport and car culture event. This will involve some of the ‘biggest, best, fastest, loudest and most outrageous’ vehicles seen at Goodwood festivals of the last 20 years.
The famous 1.16 mile hillclimb, which winds its way upwards past Goodwood House, will see a wide range of fascinating vehicles tackle its meandering slopes. These will include early steam cars, ‘Soapbox’ racers, historic dragsters ‘doing their thing’, and – hopefully – the freshly-completed Bloodhound Land Speed Record car – just days before it departs for South Africa to take part in its bold 1,000 mph World Land Speed Record bid.
Rallying will not be ignored, with some of the greatest rally cars and their drivers making the most of the Forest Rally Stage at the top of the hillclimb.
Champion riders will be using their motorcycles to thrill the crowds too. The Festival will also feature the ‘Goodwood Action Sports’ (‘GAS’) area, showcasing daring entertainment on two wheels.
In addition, the Cartier ‘Style et Luxe’ concours d’elegance competition will take place, to an accompaniment of jazz.
Festival of Speed founder, the ever-enthusiastic Lord March, said that he cannot believe that the event has been running for 20 years, and has been surprised at its huge popularity… At the first event in 1993, 5,000 spectactors were expected, and 25,000 turned up. These days the Festival attracts over 185,000 people to savour the fun and excitement.
Goodwood’s aviation history is not being forgotten, with the Goodwood aviation Exhibition taking place over the weekend, on the edge of the main Festival site.
MOVING MOTOR SHOW
Thursday 11th July will see the Goodwood Moving Motor Show take place, with more than 20 car manufacturers displaying their models, with model launches and UK debuts occurring on the day.
The 2013 Goodwood Revival will take place from 13th to 15th September. Always a sell-out, the Revival represents a magical weekend in which competitors and visitors can step back and enjoy motor sport as it used to be. Among the highlights are an all-GT40 race, with these historic and evocative Fords being driven ‘on the limit’, to help celebrate the model’s 50 years.
Further amazing aspects of this wonderful event will be night racing, racing motorcycles dating back over 110 years, and a tribute to the Austin J40 pedal cars, with the average age of participating drivers being just eight years!
One of the great aspects of this event is that spectators are encouraged to dress up in 1950s/60s attire, and there is a car parking area set aside for classic vehicles (this in itself is well worth seeing). In addition, vehicles within the race circuit area all date from pre-1965.
Tickets are always sold out early, so it pays to book as soon as you can. They can be purchased via the Ticket Hotline (01243) 755055, or through the website link, www.goodwood.com/motorsport
Further details of all Goodwood’s events can be found online, using the website link above.