20 machines that rocked the Goodwood Festival of Speed
Event commentator and motorsportretro.com contributor Henry Hope-Frost picks 20 machines that stood out at the recent 20th anniversary event
Stunningly brought back to original beauty by BMW Group Classic, the BMW turbo-powered Brabham in which Nelson Piquet took the second of his three titles 30 years ago was, for me, the star of the show. The great Brazilian, complete with period-livery crash helmet, was on top form and helped me feel like a first-year teen again.
The fabulously futuristic Big Cat, the company’s first mid-engined car with a fuel-injected, five-litre, four-cam V12 wailing behind the seats, was showcased by the Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust and driven with gusto by legendary period tester Norman Dewis, now well into his 80s. A beauty/noise combo that’s hard to beat.
Ford Capri RS Cologne
Ford’s wheel-waving V6 Capri was built to take on the renewed challenge of BMW’s bewinged CSL Batmobiles in the European Touring Car championship 40 years ago. Shaun Lynn’s immaculate machine was exercised hard on the hillclimb course by five-time Le Mans winner and historic racing devotee Emanuele Pirro.
Peugeot 208 T16 Pikes Peak
Everybody was talking about the sensational Peugeot after its recent record-smashing Pikes Peak victory with Sebastien Loeb – and to have it at Goodwood was a huge thrill. French GT racer Gregory Guilvert hurled it up the drive of Goodwood House, narrowly failing to usurp Justin Law’s time-topping Jaguar Group C car.
A welcome Festival returnee, the bewinged Chaparral 2E Can-Am racer, brainchild of Texan innovator Jim Hall, was driven by Jim Hall Jr and event host Lord March himself. The extraordinary machine features semi-automatic transmission, leaving the driver’s left foot free to operate a pedal to adjust wing angle!
Audi Quattro 200 Trans-Am
Five-cylinder rumble and wooshing turbo wastegate characterise Audi’s Trans-Am 200 Quattro from 1988. Raced by Hans-Joachim Stuck, Hurley Haywood and Walter Röhrl in period, the car was entered by Audi Tradition and the great Stucky himself was back at Goodwood to thrill fans once more.
Lotus 56 Turbine
Looking as though it had been designed by Thunderbirds’ Gerry Anderson, the wedge-like Lotus 56 is powered by a Pratt & Whitney gas turbine engine, so has a soundtrack to match its bonkers looks. The car finished a close second in the Indy 500 in 1968 with Joe Leonard and was sampled by ’96 World Champion Damon Hill.
This achingly beautiful and purposeful 1950s Grand Prix car, which carried Stirling Moss to victory in that famous British GP of 1955, was a hot topic this year. Sir Jackie Stewart drove his hero Juan Fangio’s car, while a sister machine from ’54, also ex-Fangio, fetched almost £20million at auction on the Festival’s first afternoon.
Star of McLaren’s 5o-year celebrations all weekend – in fact, star of wherever it appears – was the massive M8D Can-Am dominator of 1970. The 7.6-litre V8 sledge was taken up the hill by McLaren F1 star Jenson Button and the 2009 World Champion was wide-eyed at the end of his run. “It’s such a handful – quite scary!” he declared.
Built to take on the challenge of the faster Suzukis for 1980, the OW48R Yamaha, with its reversed outer cylinders, took King Kenny Roberts to a third straight title that season. The gritty Californian was again on show at the Festival, giving the iconic black-and-yellow 500cc winner a good workout.
LCR Yamaha TZ500
Remember the famous sidecar-in-the-ditch clip from the 1985 Dutch GP meeting at Assen?
This very outfit, with its original ace – future 10-time World Champion Steve Webster at the controls – reminded everyone what an exciting discipline of bike sport sidecar racing is.
Randy Mamola, the greatest rider never to lift the World Title despite 13 wins for Suzuki, Honda and Yamaha during the halcyon 1980s, and a man who remains one of the sport’s greatest showmen, wheelied Valentino Rossi’s raucous, 2011-spec MotoGP bike all the way to the top of the hill – and back down again – several times.
Honda NSR500 (Spencer)
‘Fast Freddie’ Spencer, the only man to win 250cc and 500cc World Titles in the same year (1985), returned to the Festival astride the 500cc, two-stroke Honda on which he won seven races en route to his second big-class title. The American’s appearance in period leathers on the Rothmans Honda was a ‘wow’ moment.
Porsche 935-78 Moby Dick
The dramatic whale-tail (hence the nickname) Porsche made its debut at the 1978 Silverstone 6 Hours and, driven by Jacky Ickx and Jochen Mass, won by seven laps – seven laps! The Martini-liveried beast formed part of a giant Martini 150th anniversary celebration and was aired by, among others, Force India F1 driver Adrian Sutil.
Lancia LC1 Barchetta
The futuristic LC1 – where are the wheels?! – was conceived by Lancia to circumvent the new Group C fuel-limited regulations. It won at Silverstone, the Nurburgring and Mugello in 1982, with F1 aces Riccardo Patrese, Michele Alboreto and Teo Fabi on the driving strength, before being replaced by the Group C-legal LC2 for ’83.
Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 TT12
Sent to Goodwood by the Museo Storico Alfa Romeo, the battleship-wide flat-12 sports-racer won the 1975 World Sportscar Championship with Derek Bell and Arturo Merzario and the diminutive, Stetson-wearing Italian was on hand to demonstrate the Campari-branded beast once more.
A flat-12 Formula 1-engined sports-racer, the 312PB utterly cleaned up in the World Championship in 1972, winning 10 of the 11 rounds (only Le Mans proved elusive), with Jacky Ickx, Mario Andretti, Ronnie Peterson and Brian Redman on the books. Owner Paul Knapfield brought his Kyalami 9 Hours winner to the Festival.
BMW M1 Procar
Surely BMW’s M1 Procar series of 1979-’80 was the best one-make formula ever? Identical 3.5-litre, straight-six M1s doing battle on Grand Prix weekends – with F1 aces at the wheel: what’s not to like? Period racer Riccardo Patrese drove this BMW Group Classic-owned, BMW Motorsport-liveried machine on the hill.
Toyota TS020 GT-One
The pacesetter at Le Mans in 1998 and ’99, Toyota’s GT-One, codenamed TS020, suffered a series of problems on both occasions, with second place in the final year its best result. Both Martin Brundle (’99 polesitter) and Emmanuel Collard drove the 3.6-litre turbo V8 in period and again at the Festival.
Porsche 911 RSR (Sebring 1973)
Part of Porsche’s huge half-century celebrations, this authentic 911 RSR was driven to victory in the Sebring 12 Hours of 1973 by Peter Gregg, Hurley Haywood and its then owner Dr Dave Helmick. Now owned and run at the Festival by Philip Basil, it was restored in its yellow, #59 Sebring ’73 livery in 2001.
Words by Henry Hope-Frost. Images by Graham Dalley GDphotographic.com