As the curtain closes on the 2019 Goodwood Revival we reflect on another fabulous event comprising fifteen action packed races run over a weekend of blazing sunshine. The non-stop show isn’t just about racing but includes track parades, live music, dancing, theatre all happening continuously throughout the paddocks, bars and public areas.
The fun element of having characters and actors in play, bring an infectiously ‘fun’ atmosphere. You couldn’t fail to smile at the naughty cleaning ladies polishing helmets (and worse) around the Paddocks – Hilarious! It’s not just another race meeting it’s the Moulin Rouge of Classic Motorsport. A timeless, non stop show encompassing everyone who walks through the gate. If you have a ticket you are in the show!
In between the theatrics is some pretty serious racing going on and we take a look at the weekend’s highlights:
Friday evening saw the start of racing, where Andrew Smith and Gary Pearson converted a pole position to the win in the Kinrara Trophy in the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO. An amazing spectacle staged with the sun setting, turning the sky orange as the cars raced down the Lavant Straight. It was the Aston Martin DB4 GT of Simon Hadfield and Darren Turner who finished.
Opening the proceedings on Saturday, Robert Barrie took the honours in the Fordwater Trophy, at the wheel of the 1964 Lotus Elan. Nick Swift took 2nd in Martin Spurrell’s 1966 Mini Marcos.
(Above Picture by Oliver Flower)
One of my favourite races from the weekend was the Barry Sheene Memorial Trophy is was very fitting that Barry’s best mate Stavros (Steve Parrish) co-riding with Richard Cooper on Tony Hughes’ 1962 Norton Max 30M rode to pole position. They were beaten by Jon-Boy Lee and Lee Johnston driving a 1966 MV Augusta 500/3 in both races, but Parrish (claiming a twisted ankle from the cricket match) opted out of the Le Mans style run across the track, giving him an inch or two head start in race two. Creative thinking it may have been, but he still clinched the 2nd slot in Sunday’s race 2 and its the result that matters, not the start!
The St Mary’s Trophy was another race of two halves, with pro driver and celebrities selected to drive the owners car on the Saturday, and owners driving on the Sunday. Sadly half the grid was later disqualified for some non-performance enhancing technical infringements. Or Rollerrocker ‘gate’. So what actually happened was Patrick Watts creation the 1959 Studebaker SilverHawk should have romped home to victory with Karl Wendlinger at the wheel in both races, but given half the grid was deemed non-compliant- Patrick was politely told not to finish in the top 3 and the show went on.
The competitors all raced despite being told they will be disqualified and so the results still reflected the competing cars as disqualified, when they could all have decided to save their engines and pack them up and go home. Whilst I fully support the need for Goodwood to enforce technical rules some common sense should perhaps be applied when the infringements are not in any way performance enhancing and just enable reliability. Otherwise it just becomes check-book racing for those who can rebuild engines week after week. No one comes to see cars breaking down do they?
The published results reflected a glorious win for Emanuele Pirro in the Alfa Romero Giuletta in Race 1, and a well deserved podium for Mike Jordan in the Austin A40 in race 2, having beaten hands down the Jaguar Mk1s and the ear splitting Volvo PV544 of Charles Rainford.
The Brooklands Trophy was won by Martin Overington in his Bentley 4 1.2 litre Blower, but it was a close run thing. In the handicap race all Bentleys started with their hoods up, and depending on their qualifying time were given set lap when to come in and put the hood down in their compulsory 1 min pit stop. The faster cars having to stay out longer, the speed at which some of them were circulating, some of the hoods were struggling to stay up, and Gregor Fisken had a frustrated pit stop whilst he unravelled his collapsed hood. Other more road car specification cars pitted early, to the testament of the car which celebrates its 100th Birthday this year, there were very few retirements. Those Bentleys with no hoods had to run round them three times. The result was a fabulously peaky blinders style spectacle full of action, smoke, oil, just like London’s rush hour in the 1920s.
The RAC TT Celebration was won by the AC Cobra of Christopher Wilson.
The Sussex Trophy was taken by Roger Wills driving his 1958 Lotus Climax 15 a fabulous result after a hard fought battle fending off pro-driver Sam Hancock in the frightenly fast 1960 Ferrari 246S Dino run by Tim Samways. Sam finished a whisker behind, with the Lister Jaguar Knobbly of Jon Minshaw right on his tail and David Hart in his Lister Jaguar Costin. Both previous Goodwood winners.
Finally the Freddie March Memorial Trophy was won by Gary Pearson in his 1955 Jaguar D-Type, it was lovely to see his brother John Pearson finishing in 2nd place, in a similar car, with Richard Wilson in third in the Maserati 250S.