Looking forward to Britain’s biggest motoring event

No, it’s not the British Grand Prix, but rather the Goodwood Festival of Speed which begins tomorrow at the Goodwood estate, near Chichester. This has become the world’s biggest celebration of the history of motorsport and car culture and an example of how things could be at every Grand Prix if there were fewer restrictions placed on the race promoters. This year at Goodwood there will be eight of the current 12 F1 teams taking part, including drivers such as Lewis Hamilton, Jenson Button and Mark Webber. Started in 1993 by Lord March, as a means to generate revenues for his expensive property, the Festival of Speed nowadays attracts 150,000 spectators (with a cap on that to avoid overcrowding).

The theme for the 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed is “Racing Revolutions – Quantum leaps that shaped motor sport”, celebrating engineering ingenuity that has led to spectacular progress in the industry. However the runs up the hillclimb course at Goodwood are just a part of this “motoring garden party” which has also been developed into an event for manufacturers with Goodwood’s Manufacturer Preview Day – known as “The Moving Motor Show”,which allows motoring enthusiasts and new car buyers the opportunity to see the very latest models up close for the first time, and even the chance to try the cars. This year there will be 20 manufacturers taking part. There is a car auction organised by Bonhams, a concert with Queen guitarist Brian May, a display of some of the latest concept cars, Goodwood’s own radio station for the event and an air display. The price is very reasonable compared to the Grand Prix.

One can only dream that such things could happen with every Grand Prix around the world… the potential is certainly there.

11 thoughts on “Looking forward to Britain’s biggest motoring event

  1. bit of topic but are the rumors of daniel riccardo taking over the seat of Narain Karthikeyan true or is someone having a bit of fun with the media? I thought that Narain was HRT’s ‘cash cow’ as he brings the tata sponsorship, unless they are getting some of Red Bull’s money

  2. and wouldn’t it make more sense to possible give HRT jaime instead of riccardo since jaime is spanish and the team is nominally spanish

  3. It is indeed a fabulous event and the price is very reasonable compared to the Grand Prix. However, being so close to the Grand Prix and being so far away for so many people, and it not being the Grand Prix, it’s not viable for many of us.

    Wish it were.

  4. Joe maybe you’re missing a point here. What matters for F1 aren’t those attending the races as much as those watching their TV sets. Even those who attend races, watch most races on TV.

    For those watching on TVs, what matters most is the quality of the race & the competitiveness of the championship.

    Having a goodwood at each race won’t harm tv viewers but won’t help much either.

    1. Jo Torrent

      The number of spectators is not important if a race is subsidized by the local authorities, as most of them are.

  5. Today in the FOTA Fan Forum Mr. Withmarsh said, that he would have wanted to bring some McLaren MP4-12C cars along to be on display at Silverstone. But apparently that would cost enormous amounts of money from FOM!

    How better to give value to teams and tracks, and even more for the fans, than these kind of things.

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