As excitement builds ahead of the 73rd Members’ meeting, here at Goodwood we’ve crossed the threshold whereafter we refer to the amount of time between now and the start of the event in days, not weeks.
With all the announcements being made about which cars and drivers are coming, and in which races they’ll be competing, we thought that now would be a good time for a swift recap of the main attractions.
F1 cars will play a major role in proceedings, with a high-speed demonstration from a grid full of wild Seventies ‘high airbox’ Grand Prix cars, which will include former Grand Prix driver Jean-Pierre Jarier being reunited with the Shadow DN5 he raced in-period. Unlike last year’s demonstration run of eighties turbo F1 cars, this year the cars won’t be processing behind a safety car and will instead be allowed to run at their own speed.
The F1 interest doesn’t end there though. The recent news that Merecedes-AMG will be bringing along a modern F1 car for you to see up-close would be pretty neat by itself, but not only will the car be running on-track on Saturday, it will be doing so with no speed restriction in a two-lap handicap shoot-out with an AMG GT-S and the fabled 6.8 litre 300SEL Rote Sau or ‘Red Pig’. With Anthony Davidson piloting the F1 car, Karl Wendlinger in the AMG GT-S and Darnley house captain Jochen Mass behind the wheel of the 300 SEL, expect an exciting show.
Then there are the wonderful Group C racers. More than 15 of these machines – whose top speed is closer to 250mph than 200 – will be circulating Goodwood’s hallowed blacktop and, like the F1 cars, will not be fettered by the presence of a pace car and as such will be free to give an impression of what kind of speeds they’re capable.
Drifting back into the world of F1 for a moment (well, sort of), another very good reason not to miss the Members’ Meeting will be the celebration of twenty years since the launch of the iconic McLaren F1 GTR. For this there will be another uninhibited, high-speed, on-track demonstration featuring a grid of both long and short tailed variants. It all sounds pretty good so far, we’re sure you’ll agree. But we haven’t even mentioned the racing yet!
After the immensely popular Gerry Marshall Trophy races last year for seventies and eighties Group One cars, the tin-tops will be back and driven by a selection of top drivers. How about BTCC champions Andrew Jordan, Matt Neal and Jason Plato driving two Swiftune Minis and a Chevy Camaro respectively… and that’s just for starters!
An exciting new addition to the programme this year will be a race for F3 ‘screamers’ that raced between 1964 and 1970. These high-revving, highly-tuned, racers were the home of many a battle between future F1 stars in the late 60s.
In more single seater action the Taylor Trophy will this year feature the only Lotus ever bought by Colin Chapman himself, fielded by son Clive Chapman’s Classic Team Lotus and peddled by long-time Lotus aficionado Dan Collins, who won the 2009 FIA Lurani Trophy in the same car.
Add the Hill Trophy for E-Types, Cobras and GTOs, the McLaren Trophy for fearsome Can-Am cars, the Aldington Trophy for early, short-wheelbase Porsche 911s and of course the Gerry Marshall Trophy… and you’re still a long way short of the entertainment that will be on offer. See a full list of races here.