For our usual motorsport Monday piece, we’re changing tack slightly this week. With no major world motorsport action going on anywhere across the globe, there was plenty on offer in the way of race cars – as well as the thrills and spills that come with them – here in Britain.
The 2014 Goodwood Festival of Speed had the throngs of people in attendance at Lord March’s Sussex estate in raptures, with everything from modern Formula One machinery to classic pre-war racers on show. Where else can you see a group of priceless historic and modern racers assembled all together in one place? You can’t.
This year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed 2014 marked a very special moment for Mazda in the UK, too, as its special 25th Anniversary Edition MX5 was shown to the public for the first time in the UK, making its debut at petrolheads’ paradise.
The Supercar Paddock was a hit with event goers, with the new trio of hybrid hypercars – the McLaren P1, the Ferrari LaFerrari and the Porsche 918 Spyder – all in attendance. Unfortunately, none of the three attempted to set a fast time on the track, but it was great to see them out in the open all the same.
From million pound motors to something based on a £10,000 supermini – works Hyundai World Rally Championship driver Dani Sordo was out in his Hyundai i20 WRC car, giving fans much to cheer about with a smoking set of donuts right in front of Goodwood House itself.
After his on-track runs, Sordo went and set the pace at the Forest Rally stage, winning this year’s shoot out with a time of 7 minutes 49 seconds. Another win for Hyundai.
Italian exotica was kicking up the dirt – a little too much in some cases, as one unfortunate driver managed to stuff the new Alfa Romeo 4C sports car into the hay bales.
He wasn’t alone in making a mistake either. Olympian turned racing driver Sir Chris Hoy made the same mistake at exactly the same corner in a Nissan GT-R, clattering the straw blocks.
Even one professional racing driver managed to mess up – seasoned pro Anthony Reid made a slight misjudgement heading up to the famous flint wall, clipping the front wing of the Aston Martin he was driving and ripping the front wheel off in the process.
Thankfully all drivers and their passengers emerged unscathed, a bruised ego the worst of the injuries.
After a few minor spills, the attention turned to the competitive on-track action. Every year on the final day of the Festival, the fastest cars from the qualifying runs over the weekend shoot it out for overall honours. Winning the Goodwood Festival of Speed Hill Climb is a prestigious honour.
And following his famous hill climb victory at Pikes Peak last year, it was multiple World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb that took honours in his Peugeot 208 T16 Pikes Peak car specially built and prepared by the French manufacturer for hill climb events. SO no surprise he won.
There was talk of Loeb being able to surpass the existing 41.6-second record for the track set way back in 1999 by Nick Heidfeld in a McLaren Formula One Car. However, recording a time of 44.6 seconds he was still some way off.
That said, it’s still an extremely impressive achievement…
Were you at the 2014 Goodwood Festival of Speed at any point over the event? Did you see the Mazda MX5 25th Anniversary Edition or Dani Sordo in the Hyundai i20 WRC car? Let us know what you thought – and what was your favourite car from the weekend – on twitter @twwhiteandsons or on our Facebook page.