I made my third visit to the Goodwood Revival on the Saturday of this year’s event. I had not planned to attend this year with disposable income being less plentiful these days, but the announcement of the Silver Arrows ‘demo race’ changed all that. I booked my tickets forthwith and began re-reading Chris Nixon’s excellent Racing the Silver Arrows in anticipation. Walking into the paddock I was greeted by the stunning recreation of the Bremgarten pits, with the pristine cars glinting in the sunlight. Having spent the preceding weeks reading about the exploits of Caracciola, Rosemeyer, et al, it seemed incredible to be witnessing this at first hand, and a little overwhelming! 111)
So far so great, and I looked forward to the on-track action later in the day. Unfortunately, I found this lacked the same sense of occasion that the build-up had pointed to. When I read about a ‘demo race’, I was expecting something more than the usual high quality demonstration we’ve become accustomed to at the Revival. I was not anticipating anything remotely approaching a race. I did think there might be a rolling start, however, to get the cars running in a bigger group and go some way, if only for a couple of laps, to achieving the amazing spectacle crowds witnessed back in the 1930s.
It does seem perverse to be writing negatively about what I believe to have been the biggest gathering of these cars since their heyday, but this is my point; all the elements were in place on this one weekend to make the ‘demo race’ truly spectacular, and it became ‘merely’ another demonstration. This is why it frustrates, as I don’t see the opportunity arising again for a long time. Was I expecting too much? Jonathan Wesley, Kettering, Northants
Legends – Giancarlo Baghetti
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