Memories Sir, I have read with interest the stories of old time motorists, and their…
HIGH WINDS AND TORRENTIAL RAIN PROVED UNABLE TO STOP THE SECOND GOODWOOD REVIVAL MEETING MORE THAN MATCHING THE INCREDIBLE STANDARDS SET LAST YEAR. MARCUS PYE REPORTS
Chauffered in an open Cadillac by fellow birthday boy Damon Hill, and with an alleged Marilyn Monroe on his arm, Stirling Moss hit 70 in style on September 17, the opening day of Goodwood Motor Circuit’s second revival meeting.
Two days later, urged on by legions of fans, he provided the drive of the meeting in his 1956 Monaco Grand Prix-winning Maserati 250E Straight-armed as ever, the maestro powerslid through from 16th on the Richmond & Gordon Trophies grid to a magnificent fourth at the flag. During a stirring battle, he traded fastest laps with 73-year-old Sir Jack Brabham’s lowline Cooper-Climax T53. “Not exactly relaxing, but tremendous fun,” said Stirling.
Brabham’s day went rapidly downhill thereafter. Having wrestled Grahame Bryant’s AC Cobra to a halt when a rear wheel came off under acceleration past the pits in the RAC TT Celebration, he had a huge accident in Bruce McCaw’s McLaren-BRM M5A in the Glover Trophy Formula One race after clipping Jackie Oliver’s Lotus 49. Having whacked the hank before Lavant backwards, the sight of ‘Black Jack’ slumped in the wreck was chilling, but he was cut free with broken ribs and a damaged vertebra. Superlative racing, though, will be the abiding memory of the event for the 80,000 spectators wowed by the sheer mastery of top drivers in often diabolical conditions. Interwoven with Stirling Moss’ party, major Aston Martin and MG anniversaries, a fine Rob Walker tribute, pomp and ceremony and the throb of Warbirds overhead, this was sporting theatre at its greatest.
The hour-long Tourist Trophy retro was conducted at sprint pace, alas without poleman Martin Brundle in Aston Martin Project 212, crashed heavily in final qualifying by Gary Pearson. As the Union Jack fell, Steve Hitchins (Shelby Cobra), Derek Bell (Ferrari 330LMB), defending champion Nigel Corner (lightweight jaguar E) and Jochen Mass (Chevrolet Corvette) became embroiled in a huge dust-up for the lead. And Danny Sullivan had a grandstand view from 4WPD, the E-type in which Jack Sears finished fourth in ’62.
Mass elbowed his way to the front, and remained there until car owner Ulli Berberich Martini took over at halfway. Meanwhile, Derek Hill was on a charge, having taken over the other Shelby Daytona coupe from father Phil, the ’61 World Champion, after only five laps. Hill Jr’s blast back right into contention, with staggeringly fast lappery, earned him the Spirit of the Meeting award.
The turning point came when Corner stopped. He and Mark Hales were the best-matched team and when the latter rejoined in second to Hitchins (yet to stop), all he had to do was stay out of trouble. Peter Hardman (in for Bell) was out of brakes in the Ferrari, so was easy prey to Hill, whose blue coupe growled to within 10sec of the conservative Hales at the flag. “That lived up to the TT’s reputation as a great race,” said the jubilant Corner. Hardman clung onto third between the Shelby Cobras, Jochen Neerpasch (who relieved Hitchins) having passed the Corvette four laps from home. Gregor Fisken’s bid for a podium place evaporated when the E-type started by Sullivan spun to a halt with a flailing halfshaft.
The controversial inclusion of 3-litre Formula One cars — which did not race at Goodwood — introduced the power and the glory of the ’66-’69 period on a grid embellished by Tasman Championship F2 machines, with original drivers Richard Attwood and Derek Bell joining Brabham in the fray. Fresh from a remarkable seven-week rebuild, Geoff Farmer’s ’68 British GP-winning Lotus 49 R7 sat on pole, with Paul Ingram’s BRM P126 and John Beasley’s Brabham-Climax BT4 alongside on the three-two-three grid.
Split initially by the fast-starting Simon Hadfield in Ecurie Brisk’s ex-Graham Hill/Jim Clark F2 Lotus 48, Farmer and Ingram scrapped furiously. Ingram’s ex-Pedro Rodriguez V12 was spraying water from a breather, but he forged ahead. Farmer’s dream of emulating Jo Siffert’s debut win looked over when he spun, chasing Ingram through backmarkers.
“I was lucky not to hit anything, so I hooked second, and gently drove through the gravel. Then my dander was up,” said Farmer. He raced on, reducing the outright lap record left by Jim Clark and Jackie Stewart in 1965 to 1m20.096s (107.87mph).
Despite a wild ride, Ingram looked secure until the BRM’s rear wheels locked and it snapped away from him at Fordwater. “I got third gear instead of fifth,” he rued later. Farmer could not believe his luck as he swept past and, when the race was red flagged for Brabham’s accident a lap later, collected the trophy with car restorer Hadfield completing a team one-two. With Brabham still being extricated and news sketchy, Bell (in the Ferrari he raced twice in ’68), joined the subdued celebration. Moss, Tony Brooks, Carroll Shelby and Roy Salvadori lapped in a brace of DBR1s to commemorate Aston Martin’s 1959 World Sportscar Championship, then Peter Hardman clambered aboard chassis 2 in which the first pair won the decisive Ti’ at Goodwood and Le Mans and did the business again in the Lavant Cup race.
Hardman’s glorious broadsides out of the chicane took him clear of the Jaguar Ds of triple British Touring Car Champion Win Percy (which won a Goodwood Handicap in ’57) and Ian Donaldson, while Gary Pearson (in Paul Pappalardo’s Ferrari Testa Rossa) howled away from Willie Green’s D-type for fourth. The anticipated Maserati Birdcage challenge petered out when Tony Smith flying having grabbed the wrong cog off the line lost his gears and Nick Mason’s broke its final drive.
The Saloon car thrash was one of the weekend’s best as, in quite atrocious conditions, Gerry Marshall and John Rhodes recalled the great Lotus Cortina versus Mini Cooper S battles of the mid-’60s. Initially they were led by Grant Williams, who fishtailed his ex-Salvadori Jaguar Mk I spectacularly from row three to lead by Fordwater. The Welshman was seven seconds clear when his enthusiasm and standing water got the better of him and the car nosedived into the bank at Madgwick. Undeterred he resumed, but another off at Woodcote blunted his efforts.
Once Max Beaverbrook had pitted his 7-litre Galaxie, all eyes were focused on Marshall and Rhodes, their absorbing scrap thrilling those dry souls in the packed stands. Rhodes clung to a tenuous advantage with the tack at its wettest, but Big Gerry moved ahead on the penultimate lap as the rain eased off and won by less than 0.4sec. “I was driving blind,” said Marshall. “The first I saw of John was when he went by me.” Behind them, Norman Grimshaw’s Mini just held off Lionel Dodlcins’s similar car for third. **
“I was swamped by the Yank Tanks at the start and picked up a misfire which took five laps to clear,” said Grimshaw, who clawed his way past the Cortinas and Jim Utting’s Mustang. Further back, the sight of Peter Mockler’s Renault Dauphine leading David Clark’s Falcon Sprint was extraordinary, as was the bow wave as Lord March’s Galaxie (captained by Bill Shepherd) lurched like an aircraft carrier through the chicane. Ludovic Lindsay and ERA R5B ‘Remus’ repeated their feat of last September by winning the Woodcote Cup race, in the face of even stiffer opposition. With poleman Martin Stretton sidelined when ERA R4D ran its bearings in practice (replicating John Bolster’s fate with ‘Remus’ at the inaugural Goodwood meeting in 1948), Germany’s Christian Glasel, stepped up to challenge in his Maserati 250E The two blue ex-Bira cars dominated on a treacherous track, but Lindsay never made the slightest mistake despite intense early pressure, the perpendicular pre-war voiturette slithering home dear of the lower-slung Maserati, with which the Siamese prince won the 1954 GP des Frontieres at Chimay in Belgium and the ’55 New Zealand GP. Barrie Williams held the tail of Wenman’s Equipe National Beige Connaught A4 at all angles en route to third. Conditions were worse for Sunday’s Goodwood Trophy race, which became an ERA whitewash. Williams hustled Skipworth’s ERA R3A to victory over Frank Sytner in R I A, with Duncan Ricketts third after a lurid spin into Madgwick with GPI. Jost Wildbolz chased hard in the ex-Pat Fairfield R4A, but all eyes were on the progress of Chris Ward in the BMW-based Veritas Meteor Streamliner. Original works drivers Karl Kling and Hans Klenk would have liked to have known his rain dance…
The 500cc brigade put on a wonderful show, cars from 11 marques including Effyh and Swebe from Sweden and four types of engine flavouring the colourful swarm. Coopers were predominant, Julian Majzub claiming the Earl of March Trophy for the second year despite a spin in his Manx Norton engined Mk8. This let John Turner’s torquier JAP powered Mk8 through, but he too had a moment on the slick surface, and Majzub hounded him down.
Nick Leston (whose father Les won the 1952 Luxembourg GP in a Cooper Mk6) piloted Pete Wright’s Norton-engined Mk8 into third, after a tussle with David Woodhouse’s Mk9. Although outqualified by the nimble Lotus 15s of Robert Brooks and Martin Brundle, Gary Pearson’s Lister-Jaguar was soon in control of the Sussex Trophy race for Production Sports Racing Cars. Brooks fell back with lack of traction and
Brundle had a grassy excursion in his bid to keep up, which promoted a thrilling tussle between John Harper (Cooper Monaco) and a hard-charging Tiff Needell (Lister-Jaguar). Among the tiddlers Mark Hales drove Dick Berger’s Lola Mk 1 prototype superbly to beat Duncan Dayton’s Cooper Bobtail.
Pearson scored again in Adrian Hamilton’s 1953 Le Mans-winning Jaguar C-type, taking Freddie March Memorial Trophy honours for the second successive year as focus switched to Goodwood Nine Hours-type cars. He was chased all the way though, by Jochen Mass in Evert Louman’s Ferrari 750 Monza which had Julian Bronson’s ex-Tony Gaze HWM-Jaguar on its tail for most of the distance.
Willie Green (Jaguar C) and Christian Glasel (Ferrari 340MM) had a good old tussle too, pursued by Simon Draper in the Aston Martin DB3S in which Peter Walker/Dennis Poore won the last Nine Hours race in ’55. John Harper bravely staved off an early challenge from Derek Bell’s Cooper-Maserati T51 to win the Richmond Trophy by half a minute in his front-engined BRM Type 25. Harper’s chive drew admiration from the five-time Le Mans victor, whose debut win at Goodwood was in the wet with a Lotus 7 in ’63. Bell earned the Gordon Trophy as the first rear-engined finisher, pursued by Willie Green in Fangio’s ’57 German GP-winning Maserati 250E
The Formula Junior race was exclusively for rear-engined cars this year. Duncan Dayton put his tiny Cooper T67 on pole for with a scintillating 97.98mph lap, but grenaded its motor in the process. Undeterred, the American bought another engine on site and duelled frantically with the fast-starting Martin Walford until it started to blow a smokescreen.
In the absence of triple F1A Lurani Trophy champion Tony Thompson and Joaquin Folch (whose Lotus 27s collided in practice), Walford took up the cudgels to win the Chichester Cup in the ex-Peter Arundell Lotus 22the combo which dominated in ’62, winning 18 races from 25 starts, including two victories at Goodwood.
Simon Ham (Brabham BT2) shook off Malcolm Ricketts (Lotus 22) for second, while Simon Diffey’s adventurous race in William Taylor’s Lotus 20 ended with Stephan Jocher’s Brabham BT6 closing fast after a spin into the rhododendrons. Unbelievably, a Lotus 49 lurked behind Roy Hunt’s 500cc Martin-Norton on the Scott Gaze Handicap grid, and spectators cheered the underdog to victory, three credit laps too tall an order for pacesetter Hadfield’s F2 Lotus 48 to negate. The ERAs of Williams and Ricketts ran Hunt closest.
“I had no idea I’d won until I saw everyone waving,” said Hunt.
Memories Sir, I have read with interest the stories of old time motorists, and their…
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