As every year, the Lord March invites to the Goodwood Revival, the 3-day racing festival on the famous former Formula One circuit with the flair of the 50s and 60s. Anyone who comes as a visitor, feels retarded in time and space. Pale-skinned English ladies in Tweet Skirts and gentlemen in a white racing suit, officer’s uniform or plus fours trousers stroll in the pit lane between racing and Grand Prix vehicles from the past. The air vibrates with the rumbling of the Spitfire squadron and on the meadow in front of the pit lane British soldiers are cheering up to the pilots in a retro outfit.
Spirit of Aviation takes flight
The ever-popular Freddie March Spirit of Aviation concours d’elegance is celebrating its tenth anniversary at the 2017 Revival Meeting. Some of the world’s rarest and most beautiful aircraft are on display and being inspected by a judging panel that includes record-breaking skydiver Felix Baumgartner, who in 2012 jumped from a balloon in the stratosphere, and daredevil model Jodie Kidd.
Aircraft on display include the world’s only functioning Bristol Blenheim MkI L6739, a 1944 Beechcraft D17 S Staggerwing, a 1942 Douglas C53, a 1938 Foster Wikner Wicko, a 1939 Lockheed P-38 Lightning, a 1938 Ryan SCW145, a 1930 de Havilland Gipsy Moth and a brace of Supermarine Spitfires.
Also back by popular demand is Bill Charney’s Red Rockette NC16S Staggering Staggerwing.
Fiat icon honoured at Goodwood
Fiat’s time-defying Nuova 500 is being honoured at the 2017 Goodwood Revival Meeting. This year marks the sixtieth anniversary of the launch of this twin-cylinder bambino, and just about every conceivable permutation of this beloved city car are taking to the Circuit each day for demonstrations. Hot laps are not on the cards, but nothing matches a Nuova 500 in any of its many flavours for cheeky appeal.
Roach wins scintillating Chichester Cup thriller
Stuart Roach put on a stellar display of car control to win the Chichester Cup, which kicked off Saturday’s on-track action at the 2017 Goodwood Revival Meeting. The veteran charger led from pole position to the flag, only losing the lead momentarily shortly after half-distance to eventual second place driver Peter de la Roche. It was a scintillating battle, as Roach’s Alexis wasn’t able to shake de la Roche’s BMC Mk2 as they streaked ahead of the chasing pack. Last year’s winner Michael Hibbert had looked like a possible winner during the early running, only to spin out of contention with seven minutes of the 20-minute race left to run. Roach survived a late scare after being forced onto the grass by an errant back marker without losing the lead.
Jaguars own Kinrara Trophy
Jaguars dominated the Kinrara Trophy. GT stars Phil Keen and Jon Minshaw emerged victorious in the amended results, with E-types blanketing the top seven places. Gregor Fisken and last year’s winner Tom Kristensen placed second, barely a second behind the victors.
Jag man wins but Austin duo star in St. Mary’s Trophy opener
GT star Frank Stippler dominated the opening installment of the St. Mary’s Trophy double-header, leading home BTCC veteran Jason Plato home by 18.5-seconds after 25 minutes of racing. The German’s Jaguar MK1 initially vied with Andrew Jordan’s improbably quick Austin A40, but the former British Touring Car Campion retired his car shortly after half-distance. Stippler ran unopposed thereafter, with Plato’s bucking Austin A105 coming home in the runner-up spot despite a deflating tyre late in the day.
All eyes, however, were on the battle for third between Austin A40 duo, Rob Huff and Michael Caine. The tin-top stars were never more than a few inches apart, routinely swapping places on each lap. Caine just held on, a late challenge by Tom Kristensen’s monstrous Ford Thunderbird ending with barely two minutes left to run after the car’s exhaust threatened to fall off. The Dane hadn’t driven the car before the race and had steered it from the back of the field with gusto.
On Sunday Richard Meaden emerged victorious in the second installment of the St. Mary’s Trophy following a race-long battle with touring car veteran Mike Jordan.
Richard Shaw took the early lead, only to spin onto the grass on the approach to St. Mary’s. The race descended into a two-car battle between Meaden’s Alfa Romeo Giulietta Ti and Jordan’s improbably quick Austin A40 thereafter.
The sparring partners were rarely more than half a car length apart, although a safety car period after Neil Brown crashed his Austin A35 at Woodcote bunched up the order.
At the restart, Meaden and Jordan continued from where they left off, with Jordan inadvertently pushing the Alfa onto the grass, before Meaden gave his rival a little nudge going into Woodcote and assumed the lead. Jordan wasn’t finished, though, and soon asserted himself once again. Meaden took the lead on the last lap amid the traffic and clung on to the flag. Aggregate victory went to the Nick Naismith/Jason Plato Austin A95 Westiminster.
Gans stars in Goodwood Trophy
American charger Michael Gans mastered tricky conditions to win the Goodwood Trophy for 1930-1950 Grand Prix and Voiturettes. Pole-sitter Paddins Dowling had looked like a likely challenger for outright honours, but his ERA tangled with former winner Mark Gillies’ similar car during the early running with both machines being eliminated on the spot. Last year’s victor Callum Lockie driving Sean Danaher’s Maserati 6CM was also in contention, only to lose pace during the early running. Then the rain came down and Gans asserted himself at the front, from fellow ERA runner David Morris, with Lockie recovering to third.
Ward unstoppable as GT40s dominate Whitsun Trophy
Ford GT40 ace Chris Ward put on a bravura display during an eventful 25-minute Whitsun Trophy race for unlimited sports-prototypes. The race was started on a sodden track, with the safety car being brought after before the first lap was up after Roland Lewis crashed his Hamill SR3. The race was restarted with 12-minutes left to run, with Ward blasting past pole-sitter Nick Padmore’s similar GT40 shortly thereafter, power-sliding his car in murky conditions to extend his winning margin to 4.9-seconds over his pursuer. Lola T70 man Mike Whittaker was third, with Mike Jordan guiding his GT40 from 29th place to fourth by the flag.
Ward storms to brilliant Freddie March Memorial Trophy win
Chris Ward continued from where he left off to take his second win of the day in the Freddie March Memorial Trophy race for 1952-1955 sports-racers. The former Silverstone chief instructor started his Cooper-Jaguar from the last row of the grid and tore through the field in stellar fashion. The veteran moved into the contention at Madgwick on the last lap after deposing long-time leader, Aston Martin DB3 driver Rob Hall.
Wood soaks up pressure to win Richmond Trophy
Tony Wood batted away the competition and the weather to win the Richmond Trophy for front-engined Grand Prix cars of the 1950s.
The race wasn’t without drama with Nick Adams’ Ferguson losing a wheel off the line, the car tobogganing off course in a shower of sparks.
Miles Griffiths led initially aboard Philip Walker’s Lotus 16, building up a five-second lead by quarter-distance. Unfortunately, the car was forced into retirement shortly thereafter, which left last year’s winner Julian Bronson in the lead in his Scarab-Offenhauser with Lotus man Joaquin Folch-Rusinol in third.
Wood muscled his way in front with ten minutes left to run and managed to move away from Bronson who was baulked by backmarkers. The Scot’s margin of victory after 25 minutes of thrilling racing in damp conditions was 0.9-seconds.
Alfa to the fore in Brooklands thriller
Sunday’s race programme got off to a flier as five drivers took turns leading the Brooklands Trophy for pre-1939 sports cars.
Pole-sitter Patrick Blakeney-Edwards blasted into an early lead aboard his Frazer Nash ‘Owlet’, only for a clip to work its way loose from its carburettor which necessitated a visit to the pits.
Mercedes man Thomas Kern assumed the lead, only to lose it almost immediately to Mark Gillies aboard Richard Skipworth’s Aston Martin.
The Englishman’s time at the front lasted only a few seconds before he was swallowed up by Niklas Halusa’s Zagato-bodied Alfa Romeo 8C 2600 Monza. Making up ground was Christopher Mann in a similar car.
The veteran ace briefly headed Halusa only to be black-flagged for dropping oil on the track. Halusa assumed the lead with only five minutes left to run and the Austrian wasn’t headed thereafter. His margin of victory over second place man Gillies was 7.8-seconds.