In 1946, Tony Gaze suggested to the Duke of Richmond and Gordon that the Westhampnett airfield near Chichester, from which Gaze had flown his Hurricane during the war, would be ideal for motor racing.
In 1946, Tony Gaze suggested to the Duke of Richmond and Gordon that the Westhampnett airfield near Chichester, from which Gaze had flown his Hurricane during the war, would be ideal for motor racing. Two years later Goodwood Motor Circuit opened for its first race, replacing Brooklands as the home of the British Automobile Racing Club. With some of the Surrey circuit's atmosphere, Goodwood was more like a road course than an airfield venue, and the traditional Easter Monday meeting became the annual highlight. However, the Duke closed the circuit in 1966 due to safety concerns although it continued to be used for testing. Goodwood was the site of Stirling Moss’s career-ending crash in 1962, as well as the testing accident that claimed the life of Bruce McLaren in 1970.
In 1998, five years after launching the Festival of Speed hillclimb in the grounds of nearby Goodwood House, the Earl of March reopened the circuit for the historic Revival meeting. The event has proved an unreserved success, as past heroes mix with current stars in a paddock that resembles a television period drama. Goodwood’s outright race-lap record of 1m20.4 (jointly held by Jim Clark and Jackie Stewart since the last F1 race in 1965) fell when the Revival hosted 3-litre F1 cars for the first time in 1999.