Unlike last year, EngageSportMode decided not to make the pilgrimage to the Goodwood Festival of Speed. It’s a very long way from Newcastle Upon Tyne, ESM’s Mate Dave has just bought a house, and if you go every year it might lose the novelty.
So, instead, ESM is at home watching the Festival of Speed unfold by the power of Twitter. It’s a lot like being there, just without the £8 burgers, stupid blazers and the smell of burnt rubber and clutch. Almost identical you could say. It would have been great to have seen the Volkswagen Polo R WRC hammering up the hill in anger (or doing doughnuts like yesterday) but that will have to wait for another time.
The Festival of Speed organisers have set up a rather good live blog at http://foslive.goodwood.com showing off Instagram and Twitter tagged photos and thoughts.
Plus, if you want read all about EngageSportMode’s experience at last year’s event, feel free to read these:
If you’re there this weekend, do let EngageSportMode know what your favourite car/bike/champagne bar was. Oh, and for old time’s sake, here is the ESM favourite from last year, the Mazda MX-5 GT Concept (again):
A week on from the Festival of Speed and I have had the time to reflect on my experience at Goodwood. By now the magazines and websites have published their glowing reports of how it was the greatest event on the planet, offered unrivalled access and gave (journalists at least) the chance to drive iconic cars. Press accredited access is one thing, but what was it like for the regular punter.
This was the first time I’d attended the FoS since 2002, the first time I’d camped there and the first time I’d been free from parental influence. As such, it was the first FoS where I’d truly been conscious of the costs and efforts needed to attend. When you live in North-East England, travelling to West Sussex is not the work of a couple of hours. This was why ESM travelled down on the Wednesday night, stayed in a cheap hotel and got to Goodwood on Thursday lunchtime. Luckily ESM’s mate Dave has a Seat Leon FR TDi which meant the trip and fuel costs weren’t too horrendous. Plus I very much doubt we would have fitted all the assorted detritus into the boot of the Polo!
Trying to work out who the FoS is aimed at isn’t particularly easy. On one hand you have the Veuve Clicquot champagne bar, exclusive restaurants and cafes, the Cartier Style et Luxe exhibit and a drivers paddock sponsored by an investment firm. Along with this you have big stands from Audi, Mercedes-Benz and Bentley and corporate hospitality seemingly packed despite costing around £500 a head for the cheapest seats. Blink, and at times it was hard to believe we’re in one of the worst economic situations the modern world has ever faced. Goodwood is about big money; the kind of money that gets richer during a recession. Where else would you see stands selling helicopters, private jets and bespoke carbon-fibre furniture. Continue reading →
As promised, here at the video highlights from EngageSportMode’s weekend at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. I’m no Ron Howard, and was only using either an iPhone or fairly basic digital camera to record these. As such, the quality is not HD, but I feel it does still capture the noise and fury of the GFoS. Due to the unique way WordPress works, the videos are hosted via YouTube. Enjoy; ear defenders advised.
I shot quite a lot of video during Friday’s Michelin Supercar Run. We were down by the start line, which gave a great opportunity to film the cars coming off the line and powering towards the first corner. Here are some of the highlights:
Following a wet night, and resulting wet tent, ESM set off for a third day at Goodwood. Naturally, being the weekend, Saturday was far busier than the preceding two days. Whereas earlier access to cars was pretty much unfettered, Saturday meant queuing up to try to get photos or see things. ESM took a tactical decision late on Saturday that, rather than risk several hours attempting to leave on Sunday afternoon, we wouldn’t bother with the fourth day of the Festival.
This meant Saturday was the last on track action we saw; neatly topped off with the fireworks display to celebrate the Festival of Speed Ball. Enjoy:
Not the usual thing to have in front of your house. Beats some gravel or garden gnomes I guess.
Crazy Nissan Juke-R – crossover body meets GT-R running gear in mental hatchback mashup
More modestly powered Toyota GRMN IQ Supercharged,
Porsche chose to show off the Cayenne’s off-road ability with this rally-style course. If you fancied waiting 1.5 hours you could tag along for a passenger ride.
Crazy drift angles ahoy.
Muddier than most Cayenne’s will probably ever get.
A scene that will probably be familiar to anyone at Silverstone this weekend.
Lotus Renault R30 returns from the top of the hill.
Johnny Mowlem brings the Lotus 125 back towards the paddock.
Senna’s Lotus 98T again.
Wedge-like Lotus-Cosworth 58 in Gold Leaf colours from 1968. Never turned a wheel in anger.
Unmistakable Lotus 49 leads the short-lived Lotus 76 home.
That blur in the front window of the Infiniti FX is Seb Vettel. Well, you try getting him to slow down!
Mighty Cummins 95 litre V16 with over 4,000 bhp and close to 12,000 lb-ft of torque. Might not fit under the bonnet of most cars sadly.
Colour and noise on the Harley-Davidson stand.
Vintage Americana in the shape of a Ford Thunderbird.
A more modern Ford; the Fiesta ST Concept. Production is slated to begin in January 2013 according to Ford UK.
Custom chopper action. Posing promo girl just out of shot to the left, hence the stares from onlookers!
Ford Evos concept. ESM’s mate Dave demands they build it looking like that!
The new Mercedes-Benz CLS Shooting Brake AMG, cunningly disguised as a Zebra. A twin turbo V8-powered Zebra that is.
Hard as nails Nissan Juke-R
Who could it possibly belong to?
680 bhp? In a Mustang? Yes please! The 2012 GT500.
Classic race bikes line-up. John Surtees leads the way.
Others choose to create a smoke-screen to hide their launch.
Marc Gene gets ready to drive the 2011 Ferrari F10 up the hill climb course.
1974 Ferrari 312 B3 prepares to follow.
Lotus Renault R30…..again.
2010 and 2011 F1 World Championship Sebastian Vettel takes to the grid. An incredibly long demonstration in doughnuts followed!
Nick Heidfled stalks closer in the 1998 McLaren Mercedes MP4-13. Heidfeld set the course record in 1999 with this car; the first year this writer attended the FoS.
F1 cars are now banned from timed runs up the hill, and instead have to make do with demonstration runs instead.
Heading towards the exit, a Koenigsegg catches our eye.
Saturday night fireworks viewed from Campsite E.
An impressive pair.
The road home on Sunday morning. Immaturity takes over.
One whippet bored of hearing about Goodwood.
That’s all photo-wise from ESM at the Festival of Speed. However, expect some noisy video action and a more serious editorial piece soon.
Friday is the first main day of the actual Festival of Speed. ESM spent the vast majority of it taking the long walk from the bottom of the paddock all the way to the rally-stage at the top of the hill. This is what we encountered along the way.
Jaguar XJ relaxs in the field next to the campsite. Row of Dacias behind, with a row of BMW M cars further back. Only at Goodwood.
Skoda pulled out all the stops to promote the Citigo. This represents a fraction of the little city-cars dotted around the event.
The anti-christ; two Chevrolet Volts.
Sometimes the car park is just as good as the main FoS. Here, a DB7 poses with a DB5 (yes, a real DB5) in the background.
Aston Martin V12 Zagato burbles down to the start line
The epic sounding BRM V16 P15. No, not a typo, it has 16 cylinders! 1.5 litres with a supercharger. Not bad for 1950.
Not sure what the collective term is for Jaguar XJR8/9/11s is. A prowl maybe?
It’s the Bugatti Veyron Vitesse again.
Just as impressive from the rear. Also, suprisingly smaller in real life compared to photos.
The 1954 Land Rover Series II “Royal Review Vehicle” as used by Her Majesty The Queen.
That stunning Lotus monument outside Goodwood House.
Ayrton Senna’s Lotus 98T.
Rene Arnoux, signing some autographs.
The Red Bull RB7; driven by Daniel Ricciardo on Friday ahead of SV’s arrival on Saturday,
2011 Lotus Renault R30.
Lotus Cosworth Type 125. Ultimate track-day toy? Essentially an F1 car for private buyers to play with.
Mercedes MGP W02 of 2011 vintage
This is the “Course Director’s” car; a locally sourced Rolls-Royce. Again, only something you would see at Goodwood.
Red Arrows take to the sky as the action continues on track below.
Ferrari 250 emerges from the trees back into daylight
Ford GT40 rumbles on up the hill.
Mercedes-Benz W194 “Gullwing” shows off it’s low-tech aircondition system.
1937 Mercedes-Benz W125; one of the classic “silver arrows” of the pre-war years.
Gorgeous and effective; the 1964 Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe.
Is the Lancia Stratos the best looking rally car ever built? Hard to think of a better one.
The brutal Ford RS200 Group B monster.
The “business end” of the RS200
How the late Tony Pond managed to rally a Rover SD1 Vitesse is beyond me. Look at the size of it?!
A distinctive livery for the Opel Manta 400. Driven by Russell Brookes at the FoS as it was back in 1985.
Skoda’s “car-henge” creation, marking the top of the hill.
Jenson Button’s Williams FW22. A car from before he started doing Head & Shoulders adverts.
Being driven by Bruno Senna at Goodwood, the 1983 Williams-Cosworth FW08C.
Jody Sheckter’s personal Ferrari 312 T4 from 1979.
THE Audi Sport Quattro S1. My favpurite rally car of all time.
Ah. It’s somehow made its way from Oulton Park to be here at Goodwood.
Another ESM unfavourite; the BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe in matte brown.
Mmmm carbon fibre on the boot of a Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG.
Modern “Gullwing” in the form of the SLS AMG.
Finishing off a hard day’s walking, photographing and drinking £4 pints.
So that is Friday’s action covered. Come back for Saturday and video highlights soon.
Whilst the Festival of Speed “proper” doesn’t begin until Friday, Thursday plays host to the Moving Motor Show event. Designed to let the public get up close and personal with a range of new cars from Skoda and SEAT to Mercedes-Benz and Ferrari. Of note were the BMW M5′s which seemed to rev and crackle for fun, and sheer awesomeness of five Audi R8 V10 Spyders tearing up the hill one after another.
Thursday is also the quietest day of the Festival of Speed, with not all garages and paddocks full with cars. The number of spectators is also lower, giving the early bird the chance to get close up with the vehicles on site without wading through a wall of elbows.
ESM arrived on Thursday in sweltering humid conditions at around lunchtime. Once the tent was up and somelight refreshment taken onboard, we set off to explore. Below is a pictorial summary of what we found:
ESM’s no expense spared accomodation for Wednesday night in lovely, lovely Luton.
Following a Ferrari 360 Spider through rural West Sussex en route.
ESM’s base of operations for Goodwood.
Priorities were set fairly early on in proceedings. We did bring our own ice though.
Racing seats, lots of rich, red leather. Whatever could it be?
A Land Rover Defender. Obviously.
The rather beautiful Jaguar C-X75 concept.
Rather stylish classic Mustang
Another attractive classic Mustang
I would not get tired of sitting in this interior.
Morgan Aero SuperSport; classically British.
Morgan Threewheeler; classically British and mental.
Koenigsegg Agera R – “only” 1,100 bhp.
Bentley EXP 9 F concept SUV. To be honest, despite the controversy, I actually quite like how it looks.
The demonic looking Audi A1 quattro.
Orangey goodness; the new Audi RS4.
1 of the 337 Toyota 2000GTs produced.
Crazy rat-rod pickup truck. Exposed fuel tank in the back means no smoking whilst driving!
Lexus LFA. Ten cylinders, three exhausts and aerodynamically styled indicators.
Ferrari’s latest drop-top; the 458 Spider
Bugatti Veyron Vitesse. The ultimate expression of this hypercar.
The slightly more “normal” Veyron Grand Sport.
Looking evil in matte black, the Mercedes C63 AMG Black Edition
Alfa Romeo 155 V6 TI – 480 bhp and a rev limit of 12,000rpm! One of my favourite tin-top racers.
Is it a bird, is a plane? No, it’s a 1981 Zakspeed Ford Capri; driven at Goodwood by Klaus Ludwig
Coolest Carlton ever? TS6000, packing a 6.0 V8 Chevrolet engine with 600 bhp. This car took the 1988 Thundersaloon series.
Gerry Marshall’s infamous “Baby Bertha”. A Vauxhall Firenza with a 5.0 litre V8.
An altogether different form of power. Nissan’s all-electric Leaf Nismo RC.
The brawny Nissan GT-R GT1.
The #3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Silverado from NASCAR’s Camping World Truck Series. It’s 700 bhp is overshadowed by the 850 of Jesse Jame’s Trophy Truck lurking behind.
Wings don’t get much bigger than that fitted to Ari Vatanen’s Peugeot 406 T16 “Pikes Peak”.
Shelby-team 1967 Ford Mustang Trans-AM
1987 Porsche 962C warms itself in the afternoon sun.
Porsche 956′s calmly survey the rest of the paddock.
The 1989 Sauber-Mercedes C9 – Le Mans winner that year.
The quick, but unreliable, Lanica-Ferrari LC2 from 1983. Uses a turbocharged Ferrari 308 GTB engine.
Another Ferrari FF; not quite as cool in generic silver.
Porsche 918 Spyder – 4.6 litre V8 with 2 electric motors, giving a total of 850 bhp.
The original M1 meets the latest M5 on the BMW stand.
Red Bull X2010 concept. Designed by Adrian Newey as the ultimate racing car.
Stay tuned for further photo and video highlights from the other days of the Festival of Speed.
Now that my hearing has started to recover, the sunburn has begun to fade and the numerous pictures and videos have been uploaded, I can now begin to make sense of the previous four days.
For the uninitiated, the Goodwood Festival of Speed (FoS) is an annual event which first began back in 1993. The idea is simple; legendary and iconic cars and bikes from the world of motorsport are invited to be hammered up the Earl of March’s drive, at his house in West Sussex, by the greatest riders and drivers from history. In addition, between runs up the hill the cars/bikes are displayed in simple awning-style paddocks with spectators able to get right up alongside them. The additional Moving Motor Show event has in recent years fundamentally replaced the traditional British motor show, with stands from leading manufacturers and new cars being unveiled. Have a look at this if you still happen to be in any doubt as to what the long weekend entails.
The event felt bigger than ever this year, with a sprawling exhibitor’s area, numerous special paddocks, off-road displays and the more recent rally-stage taking up huge acres of the Goodwood estate. Trying to fit all this into even four days is a challenge, given the vast array of distractions both on and off the track. As a result, and for this week’s first FoS themed post, I’ve picked out my top five moments from the weekend.