Gear up for the Goodwood Festival of Speed

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarMonday, July 7th, 2008

 
 

It’s a busy life at the moment if you’re a motor racing fan. No sooner is the British Grand Prix over then it’s time to start gearing up for Goodwood.

Held in Sussex, the annual Festival of Speed event is a three-day orgy of star drivers, famous vehicles, myriad racing competitions and the chance to immerse yourself in three days of motorsport history and culture.

The theme of this year’s festival is Hawthorn to Hamilton — Britain’s love affair with world motorsport. The organisers say: “Britain has always played a key role in the global motor racing industry, forging successful relationships with the rest of the motor sport world.

“From Mike Hawthorn — who used a Ferrari to become Britain’s first Formula 1 World Champion fifty years ago in 1958 — to current F1 star Lewis Hamilton, driving a British engineered car with German power, British drivers and engineers have utilised global resources to achieve success.

“The 2008 Festival honours these winning combinations.”

This year’s highlights will include:

  • The presence of six F1 teams plus drivers including Lewis Hamilton, Jenson Button and Sebastian Bourdais. And it’s not just the young’uns – you can catch Sir Stirling Moss, Sir John Surtees and Damon Hill tackling the 1.16-mile Goodwood hillclimb course.
  • Current WRC teams and historic rally cars tackling the Goodwood Forest Rally Stage. Petter Solberg and Chris Atkinson will be showing off the new hatchback Subaru Impreza WRC, alongside Ford Focus WRC drivers Mikko Hirvonen and Matthew Wilson. Plenty of big names from the past will also be showcasing their skills. And there’ll be a special tribute to Colin McRae.
  • From the world of motorbike racing Carl Fogarty, Troy Corser, Mick Doohan and Yukio Kagayama, plus machines ridden by Barry Sheene, Mick Grant and Randy Mamola, as well as modern bikes to make your mouth water.
  • Plus the organisers say: “Twelve-time international trials champion Dougie Lampkin will also be popping up all over the Goodwood Estate throughout the Festival weekend, riding on things that he shouldn’t.”
  • The Sunday Times Supercar Run – a multi-million pound collection of painfully desirable cars demonstrated on the Hill. Set to feature are a Bugatti Veyron 16.4 ‘Hermes’ and an Aston Martin V12 Vantage RS – plus the first UK sighting of the new Artega GT, Nissan GT-R and Mazda Furio concept in action.
  • The regular Cartier ‘Style et Luxe’ – set to include James Bond’s automobile collection, expecially his iconic Aston Martin DB5 and Lotus Esprit positioned on a special 007 film set. You can also catch a Ford Model T, a pre-War Mercedes-Benz, an Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Stradale and an Audi AVUS.
  • A spectacular yet-to-be revealed display featuring the history of the Land Rover marque – more than 35 metres high, one of the Festival’s largest and most ambitious yet, towering above Goodwood House and requiring a red warning light to alert low-flying aircraft.
  • A flypast of the Airbus A380 ‘superjumbo’ on Saturday and the Red Arrows air display team on Sunday. The Goodwood Cricket Pitch, the oldest in the world, will house a dozen top-fuel dragsters from the 1950s and 1960s with a twice-daily ‘cacklefest’ as these ultra-powerful machines fire up.

The festival, Britain’s biggest celebration of motorsport, takes place on the Goodwood estate near Chichester from Friday July 11 to Sunday July 13.

Ticket sales are in advance only – there is no admission on the day. They were still available at time of writing – for more information, click here.

The festival website also contains all the information you will need on getting to the venue and what to expect once you are there.

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