When the ninth Duke of Richmond, Freddie March, invited the Lancia car club to contest a hillclimb on the grounds of his estate in 1936 (where he set the fastest time of the day in his Augusta), few could predict the motorsport jewel those very roads would later become.
The five coolest cars at FOS you won’t see on the Hill
Almost six decades later, it was only when planning for the inaugural Festival of Speed was well underway that the current Duke of Richmond discovered evidence of his grandfather’s exploits. And so Goodwood revived the 1.16-mile hillclimb, sending a clutch of then-modern racing cars up the Hill, retracing Freddie’s tyre-marks.
Nowadays the Festival of Speed presented by Mastercard draws hundreds of thousands of spectators, who gather around huge hay bales to watch various vehicles blast up the Hill.
But while all eyes are on the hillclimb, a number of truly spectacular machines sit silent on various stands, offering visitors a close-up look at numerous world championship winning vehicles.
So let’s take a moment to appreciate the silent heroes of this year’s Festival.
Jim Clark’s record-breaking Lotus Type 25/R6
Taking pride of place on the Lotus stand is Jim Clark’s record-breaking Lotus Type 25 R6. Built in the Autumn of 1963, Clark raced chassis R6 in the 1964 Formula 1 season, achieving first positions in the Dutch, Belgian and British Grand Prix, and taking 3rd in the driver’s championship that year.
Then in his late 20s, Clark also won the Goodwood News of the World in 1964, before repeating that feat at the circuit’s Sunday Mirror Trophy the following year. It was during that meeting that Clark set the circuit’s best ever lap time, a 1m 20.4s.
The Festival of Speed will be the first time that the car has been seen in the UK for over 30 years.
Niki Lauda’s championship winning McLaren MP4/2
Yes, that’s right, Niki Lauda’s championship winning McLaren MP4/2 Formula 1 car will be on display on McLaren’s stand at the Festival of Speed. In its debut season in 1984, the McLaren MP4/2 scored 12 wins – the then highest number of wins in a season by a single team. Alain Prost took seven victories to Niki Lauda's five, yet it was the Austrian who took the eventual drivers’ Championship win, just half a point ahead of his team-mate.
An innovative car at the time, with a carbon fibre chassis and carbon brakes to match, the MP4/2 was powered by a 1.5-litre, 90-degree V6 TAG-Porsche turbocharged engine with 650bhp. With advanced aerodynamics and massive rear-end traction, the MP4/2 led the field, and went on to take the ‘85 and ’86 Championships, too.
2019 Le Mans winning Toyota TS050 #8
Fresh from this month’s Le Mans win, the Toyota Gazoo Racing #8 Toyota TS050 Hybrid will take pride of place on Toyota’s Festival of Speed stand.
After following sister car #7 for much of the race, #8, driven by Sébastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Fernando Alonso got a lucky break, when a puncture drama ruled #7 out of contention. The second consecutive win for Alonso, Buemi and Najakima, this year’s victory makes Toyota the first Japanese manufacturer to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans twice.
Sébastien Loeb's 2003 Citroën Xsara WRC
The FIA stand will host not one, but two epic racers. The first is Sébastien Loeb’s Citroën Xsara WRC in which he contested the 2003 World Rally Championship, losing out on the driver’s title by just one point.
Debuting in 2002, the model was based on the road going Xsara, albeit with many, many significant modifications. In the Xsara WRC Loeb took 28 rally wins and three consecutive Driver's Championship titles from 2004 to 2006. Combined with Citroën’s three consecutive Manufacturer's Championship titles in 2003, 2004, and 2005, the Xsara WRC was one of the most successful cars ever to compete in the World Rally Championship.
Michael Schumacher’s 2006 Ferrari 248
Built for the 2006 F1 season, this 785bhp V8 Ferrari 248 was the car in which Michael Schumacher retired in – the first time around. In it, the German driver won seven of the 18 rounds, enough for him to finish second in the Drivers’ Championship, 13 points behind winner Fernando Alonso, and 41 points ahead of Ferrari team-mate Felipe Massa.
Visitors to the Festival can get up close and personal with the Schumacher car on the FIA stand.
Electric Mustang on the Michelin stand
Think of Ford’s Mustang and you likely envisage a gas-guzzling, roaring V8. But British company Charge Cars wants to, well, change that with their fully-electric Ford Mustang, which will feature on the Michelin stand at Festival of Speed.
Using brand new Mustang bodies and outsourced EV components, the Mustang has a 64kWh battery with 200 miles of range, and a 536bhp and 1,200Nm motor. 0-62mph takes less than four seconds and the top speed is around 150mph. The only catch? To buy one would set you back £300,000…
Images courtesy of Motorsport Images and Classic Team Lotus.
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