As Roy Salvadori so famously said: ‘Give me Goodwood on a Summer’s Day and you can forget the rest of the world.’ After spending some time this afternoon with renowned Jaguar experts CKL and some of their customers, we’d respectfully opine that an early Spring day at Goodwood with a selection of outstanding Jaguars runs it close.
We didn’t manage to tear ourselves away from our desks to go and mingle until after lunch. Watching a stream of C, D and E-Types, various XKs and even a very special Lister Knobbly pass by our office window en route to the circuit, without being able to go and experience them up-close was torture.
As you can see here, there were a lot of gorgeous Jags – both road and racing varieties – and all being given some enthusiastic ‘exercise’ around the circuit.
Of particular note though, was a yellow and green Lister-Jaguar Knobbly which we recognised as being the only Knobbly ever to run at Le Mans. ‘Yes it was there in 1958’ confirms owner Chris Lunn ‘although that was the period when Jaguar had to run the three litre engines which never really worked and it retired with head gasket failure.’
The unusual colour scheme was a reversal of the green/yellow colours used on the works cars which were sponsored by BP. By making yellow the predominant colour the car’s appearance then aligned nicely with Ecurie Nationale Belge, which was the entrant at Le Mans (yellow being the national Belgian racing colour.)
‘Nothing fits!’ exclaims Chris ‘which marks it out as a highly original car.’ Mr Lunn was too modest to say, but we’ve heard it said that this could be the most original Knobbly in existence.
Hopefully, if we can get our GRR chores out of the way early we might just have time to spend a leisurely half-hour trackside, taking in the various birdsongs, daffodils bobbing in the gentle breeze, and the creamy snarl of Jaguar straight-sixes. Not quite ‘Goodwood on a Summer’s day…’ perhaps, but not too far off.
Photography: Ben Miles