Goodwood Festival of Speed
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|Location||Goodwood House, West Sussex, England|
|Owner||Charles Gordon-Lennox, Earl of March and Kinrara|
|Major events||Goodwood Festival of Speed|
|Length||1.86 km (1.16 mi)|
|Lap record||0:41.6 (Nick Heidfeld, McLaren, 1999)|
|Forest Rally Stage|
|Length||2.5 km (1.5 mi)|
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The Goodwood Festival of Speed is an annual hill climb featuring historic motor racing vehicles held in the grounds of Goodwood House, West Sussex, England in late June or early July; the event is scheduled to avoid clashing with the Formula One season, enabling fans to see F1 machines as well as cars and motorbikes from motor racing history climb the hill.
In the early years of the Festival, tens of thousands attended over the weekend; it currently attracts crowds of around 100,000 on each of the three days it is now held. A record crowd of 158,000 attended in 2003, before an advance-ticket-only admission policy came into force; attendance is now capped at 150,000.
The Goodwood Festival of Speed was founded in 1993 by Lord March in order to bring motor racing back to the Goodwood estate — a location steeped in British motor racing history. Shortly after taking over the estate in the early 1990s, Lord March (as he is formally known) wanted to bring back motor racing to Goodwood Circuit, but did not have the necessary permit to host a race there. Therefore, he instead hosted it on his own grounds. With a small selection of entrants made up of invited historic vehicles, the first event that took place on Sunday 13 June proved to be a success, taking in a crowd of 25,000 despite a date clash with the 24 Hours of Le Mans that year. For the following year, the event expanded to two days, and in 1996 added one extra day on Friday. After its date clash for the first event, Lord March would ensure that the event would never be allowed to clash with either Le Mans or Formula One races.
Features and attractions
Between 2000 and 2004, one of the unique features of the event was the Soapbox Challenge, a downhill race for gravity-powered cars. However, as accidents became frequent, costs of cars became higher, and safety rules became tighter, it did not return in 2005. The specially-built forest stage for rally cars was introduced that year. The other unique feature from 1997 until present is the spectacular Gerry Judah sculpture in front of Goodwood House incorporating rare racecars.
One of the other most popular attractions is the Sunday Times Supercar Run for road-going supercars, which has been running since 2000. It is now common for speciality car manufacturers to show off their latest sports model, including newly released mass-produced sports models and working concept models.
Other popular attractions at the event are the real life replicas of the Wacky Races cars, which serves to provide lunchtime entertainment for the crowds, and the airshows, which usually include the RAF Tornado and Red Arrows, and in 2004 and 2005 a low-flying Boeing 747; a low-flying Airbus A380 appeared at the 2008 event.
For a change of pace, also held is the Cartier Style et Luxe, an auto show which takes place close to the track, similar to the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance. Entry is usually by invitation, and this provides some leeway as to which type of vehicle can enter, usually resulting in a more varied event than usual Concours d'Elegance. Unlike most concours shows, the Cartier Style et Luxe is judged by a panel of selected judges consisting of celebrities from all around the world to car designers. Since its beginning, the poster art has been illustrated by renowned motor racing artist Peter Hearsey.
Other factors also make the Festival of Speed unique as a motor sport event. Thanks to the event's classification as a hill climb, its location and desire to reflect the style and history of motor sport, visitors are afforded close views of the action - separated only by a few metres and reinforced straw bales from the track. Visitors are free to walk around several paddocks where the cars and drivers can be seen at close quarters. The atmosphere of the Festival of Speed, when compared to the separation of fans from drivers and machines common to most top end motor sport events, encourages participation by the fans.
The track has an elevation change of 92.7 metres, for an average gradient of 4.9%. The record time for the hillclimb was set in 1999 when Nick Heidfeld drove a McLaren MP4/13 Formula One car up the hill in 41.6 seconds (100.385 mph). For safety reasons Formula One cars are no longer allowed to do official timed runs, and will often focus on demonstrations that are spectacular rather than fast. In 2006 Heikki Kovalainen completed the course in a Renault R25 F1 car and was unofficially timed below 40 seconds.
For 2010, an unofficial fourth day was added to the event prior to the opening day. Dubbed the Moving Motor Show, it was added in response to the cancellation of the British International Motor Show aimed exclusively for buyers of new cars, allowing them a chance to test the cars on the course. Following its success, it was announced the MMS would return in 2011.
The 2010 event also included the running of the new McLaren MP4-12C.
There have been two separate fatal accidents at the event.
The first was during its inaugural meeting in 1993, when vintage racing motorcyclist Chas Guy was killed in practice following the completion of the course when his Vincent motorcycle developed a steering wobble known as a tank slapper, throwing the rider into a tree. Since then, motorcycles are not timed for their run.
In 2000, driver John Dawson-Damer lost control of his Lotus 63, and crashed into the finish line gantry, killing himself and marshal Andrew Carpenter. Another marshal, Steve Tarrant, survived but sustained serious injuries to the lower part of his right leg. Since his recovery, despite his disability, he continues to marshal to this day. The gantry has since been made wider.
Car manufacturers honoured with a central display
This is a list of temporary monuments, all designed by Gerry Judah, erected each year on the lawn in front of Goodwood House for the Festival of Speed:
(on the main display)
|1997||Ferrari||Ferrari F310B||50th anniversary|||
Porsche 917-20 "Pink Pig"
Porsche 917 LH
Porsche 911 GT1
|1999||Audi||Audi Avus quattro
Auto Union Type C Streamliner
|Depicts the banking of Avus as if the cars are racing together. The Streamliner is a replica built especially for the display|||
|Depicts the cat's cradle. Celebrating its F1 debut|||
|2001||Mercedes-Benz||Mercedes-Benz 300SL||100th anniversary, resembling a gush of liquid, falling and spreading as it hits the ground.|||
|Honouring its comeback in F1 racing. Depicting a feather|||
|2003||Ford||Ford GT40 Mk. II||100th anniversary. Depicting the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans race and its famous finish. As the actual cars were on track, those displayed are replicas.|||
Campbell-Railton Blue Bird
Bluebird K4 replica
|100th anniversary, indicating the brand's supremacy in record breaking on land, sea and air|||
|Of them all displayed, three of these including two Hondas, as the genuine cars ran, are replicas.|||
|2006||Renault||Renault Type AK 90CV
|100th anniversary of Grand Prix racing. Used as a shelter for its Formula One cars that is designed to channel sound. Using a laptop, the cars can produce music out of its engine. Two tunes were performed, one of those played is God Save the Queen|||
Toyota Celica GT-Four
|Inspired by the traditional torii gates. Celebrating its 75th anniversary and 50 years involvement in motor sport.|||
|2008||Land Rover||Land Rover Defender
Land Rover Discovery
Land Rover Freelander
|60th anniversary. Indicating the brand’s "any terrain" essence.|||
Auto Union Type C Streamliner
|100th anniversary Sculpture depicting the road from the streamliner to the R8 forming a loop in front of the house.||,|
|2010||Alfa Romeo||Alfa Romeo P2
Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione
|2011||Jaguar Cars||Celebrating 50 years of the Jaguar E-Type|
|'Past, Present and Future'|
Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7
Porsche 911 991
|50th anniversary|||
Mercedes AMG W04
|120 years in motorsport|||
Hillclimb fastest times
|1999||Nick Heidfeld||McLaren MP4/13||0:41.60|
|2008||Justin Law||Jaguar XJR8/9||0:44.19|
|2009||Justin Law||Jaguar XJR8/9||0:44.40|
|2010||Roger Wills||Williams FW05||0:47.15|
|2011||Dan Collins||Lotus 88B||0:48.52|
|2012||Anthony Reid||Chevron GT3||0:46.46'|
|2013||Justin Law||Jaguar XJR8/9||0:45.95|
|2014||Sébastien Loeb||Peugeot 208 T16 Pikes Peak||0:44.60|
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- "Goodwood". Goodwood. Retrieved 2009-05-30.[dead link]
- Williams, David (2010-04-29). "Goodwood Festival of Speed: Moving Motor Show". telegraph.co.uk (London). Retrieved 2010-07-05.
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- "Festival of Speed - Archive - 2006 Review - Friday". Goodwood. Retrieved 2009-05-30.
- "Celebrating 50 years of Toyota motor sport at the 2007 Goodwood Festival of Speed". Toyota-europe.com. Retrieved 2009-05-30.
- "Festival of Speed - Archive - 2007 Review - Friday". Goodwood. 2007-06-22. Retrieved 2009-05-30.
- "Celebrating 60 Years of Land Rover". Charleshurstlandrover.co.uk. 2008-08-03. Retrieved 2009-05-30.
- "Festival of Speed - Latest News". Goodwood. Retrieved 2009-05-30.
- "Festival of Speed - Latest News". Goodwood. Retrieved 2010-03-28.
- "Mercedes-Benz central feature to celebrate 120 years of winning". Goodwood Road and Racing. Goodwood. 2014-03-21. Retrieved 2014-06-06.
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