E-Mail E-Mail

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16

® ®
Made with StudioLine Made with StudioLine
Made with StudioLine

Goodwood, 21st - 22nd of March

For the second time after its premiere last year the new edition of the traditional Members Meeting took place on the third weekend of March on the well-known Goodwood race circuit. Famous for its Revival in September the original race track now features another very important race meeting.

... MediaCenter Gallery ... Index >>>

... MediaCenter Gallery with 570 Peter Singhof Images >>>

The original members’ race meetings were held between 1948 and 1966 with a total count of 71 but with the ever increasing popularity of the racing on the old track the Members Meeting was revitalized after 48 years to former glory to set a counterpart in spring to the established Revival. Certainly it would have made no sense to simply duplicate the Revival so a new concepts was introduced. Whereas the visitors mainly add to the atmosphere in September they are active part of the Members Meeting supporting their houses. Every race driver and every Member of the Goodwood Road Race Club (GRRC) is assigned to one of the four houses represented by their team captains Nicolas Minassian (Aubigny), Jochen Mass (Damley), Anthony Reid (Methuen) and long-time Goodwood supporter Emanuele Pirro (Tolbolton). In no less than 12 races the drivers fight for the points in the classification whereas the visitors can collect point for their house in sports games (cricket, football or hockey), social games (darts, billiard), quiz or skills (like caravan towing) so there is a lot of entertaining going on during the day.

Highlight for the weekend is the big party on Saturday evening when the area behind the great hall (the building of the Earl Court Motorshow in September) becomes a big fun fair with merry-go-around, live music and buskers. Unfortunately the weekend was quit cold with a strong breeze but the open fire, suitable clothes and one or the other pint warmed enough to make it to the final fireworks.

But certainly the main reason to visit the MM is the racing. Like at the Revival the Members Meeting featured several interesting grids of open wheeled single seaters and the best of the period sports cars. A few additions were done to the Revival with some newer cars like the 1970s saloon cars in the Gerry Marshall Trophy named after the British saloon car champion. Chevrolet Camaro, Ford Capri, Rover and Mini were racing twice that weekend, the first 15 minute race on Saturday to get the grid for the final 45 minutes two drivers race on Sunday. Just like their older cousins in the Sopwith Cup one could see a lot of action including wild drifts, three or even two wheeled cornering and some flame spitting around the track. Just like at the saloon races in September this was also the perfect set-up for many current and former race drivers including the house captains themselves.

The single seater races included the Earl Howe Trophy for pre-war grand prix and voiturettes included several Bugatti who had their own race last year in addition to GP Alfa Romeo and Maserati but also two of the big Le Mans racers, the supercharged Mercedes and Bentley racers.

The Mike Hawthorn trophy featured the post-war racing of front engined GP cars like the Maserati 250F, BRM, Cooper-Bristol and Connaugh. At the end of the race the BRM Type 25 of Barry Baxter could celebrate an easy start-finish victory.

In the Taylor Trophy named after Jim Clark´s team mate Trevor Taylor the era of the rear engined Formula Junior was lined-up for the first race on Saturday afternoon. It was also the closed race with a duel between the Lynx-Ford MK3 of Andrew Wilkinson and the Jolus-Ford of Ivo Goeckmann who lapped the entire field on their way to the chequered flag. At the end it was Wilkinson winning by just under 2 second.

One of the sports car greats and long-time supporter of the Goodwood events is Derek Bell who was honoured with his own race for historic Formula Three cars from the late 1960s with 1000cc Ford engines.

Typically the main races are those for sports and GT cars. The very last race of the weekend was the race of the Salvadori Cup for the sports cars of the late 1950s. Unfortunately the Le Mans winning Aston Martin DBR1 of Salvadori was not seen on the Goodwood race meetings since it was sold by its last owner who regularly campaigned it in the hands of the best historic racers. But even without the LM winning car the line-up was very interesting including several Listers and Jaguar D-Type. The Salvadori Cup also saw the biggest crash of the weekend when in qualifying Jochen Mass in the Mercedes 300 SLS Porter crashed in the back of the Lister-Jaguar of Tony Wood just at the pit entrance due to a misunderstanding between the two drivers. Heavily damaged and loosing cooling and oil it took a while to clear the track for the final race of the Saturday evening, the GT cars.

Intended to run into the dawn the Graham Hill Trophy started very late and well after sunset. Only few spectators made it to the end of the race that had to be shortened because of the darkness. It was last year’s Tour Auto winner Shaun Lynn partnered by Emanuele Pirro who finally won in front of a Daytona Cobra Rep and an Iso Bizzarrini.

Goodwood is now known for single marque or car races. Whereas the Revival already featured pure Cobra, GT40 and Jaguar E-Type races it was the Porsche 911 that was featured in the John Aldington Trophy with about two dozen early examples of the German classic.

Just like last year the 73rd edition again featured some high speed displays of cars normally not seen in Goodwood. Just as last year again the Group C was line-up in their own paddock and were driven on both days on the circuit. The display included a rare Mercedes C11. One of the Aston Martin AMR-1, several Jaguar and the final evolution of the Group C, the Peugeot 905 Evo.

After the display of Turbocharged F1 cars last year it were the high air boxed cars of the Ferrari-McLaren-Lotus Cosworth era that took the track in two groups.

But stars of the weekend were a dozen of McLaren F1 GTR both in short and long tail version. With the road versions getting more and more popular in the collector’s car market not few were travelling purely to Goodwood to see the racing versions.
After a dry but cold weekend the organizers team could be very happy with the results, another sold out event added to the calendar with a clear raise in spectators’ numbers. Now open to the public earlier and not restricted to Members only, thousands of people took the opportunity even when the tickets were no bargain at 130 GBP for the weekend with additional fees for the grandstands.

But the MM is well worth the money and one has the possibility to get to places never seen at the Revival. Whereas the area at the chicane is basically reserved to sponsors and media the fences and the small hill on the inside of the track were crowded especially on Sunday afternoon.

In addition to that the race track covered in yellow flowers gives a very own atmosphere that clearly link the taken pictures to the spring meeting.

If you are curious about the Goodwood events please visit www.goodwood.com

Report & images ... Peter Singhof