14 things not to miss at the 2019 Festival of Speed

| 3 Jul 2019
14 things not to miss at the 2019 Festival of Speed

It’s Festival of Speed time once again, with the annual motoring extravaganza returning to the Goodwood estate tomorrow (4 July) for another four-day spectacular.

And while FoS might not be as much about classic cars as Goodwood’s other major events, there’s still plenty for enthusiasts to look forward to – not least because 2019’s theme is ‘Speed Kings – Motorsport's Record Breakers’.

As ever, there will be big birthday celebrations everywhere you look, including right outside Goodwood House, where this year’s Central Feature – read: automotive sculpture – will honour the 70th anniversary of Aston Martin winning its first race at Goodwood, plus the 60th anniversary of the marque sealing the World Sportscar Championship at the TT.

In short, if you’re Sussex-bound, wear comfy shoes! There’s so much to see and do across the sprawling site, not to mention a hill to climb…

To help you make the most of your visit, here’s our quick guide to everything we'd recommend seeing. And with many exhibits not revealed until the gates open, there’s sure to be lots more on offer, too. 

Still need tickets? Click here. And if you can’t make it, click here for the live stream.

1. Aston Martin takes pride of place

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
Moss takes the chequered flag at Goodwood in 1959 © Motorsport Images

It’ll be hard to miss the Newport Pagnell-based brand at this weekend’s FoS, what with it being immortalised in this year’s Central Feature.

The sculpture itself will be designed by Gerry Judah – the chap behind the previous 21, in fact – and it will be the first time that it’s taken Aston Martin as its subject; last year it marked Porsche’s 70th.

The artwork will recall when Carroll Shelby/Stirling Moss/Tony Brooks/Jack Fairman took a DBR1 Tourist Trophy victory at Goodwood in 1959 (pictured), and 70 years since the first Aston Martin victory at the Sussex circuit.

Of course this won’t be the only Aston Martin you’ll see at FoS – in fact far from it.

Among the many special cars the marque is bringing to the party are the 1923 Aston Martin 11hp Razor Blade – so named for its specially built narrow chassis – plus the three project cars DP212, DP214 and DP215.

The latter trio are all super-light cars which were based on the DB4GT and developed with Le Mans in mind in 1962 and ’63. To have just one of them at Goodwood would be exciting – DP215 sold last year for £17m, after all – but to have all three together is really quite the coup.

2. Bentley at 100

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
More Bentleys will climb Goodwood’s hill than ever before

It’s time for another Great British anniversary! We celebrated Bentley’s centenary in our July issue and now the marque will follow suit at Goodwood by bringing history to life.

And it really is going to town. FoS will play host to a 30-car Centenary Concours showcasing some of the marque’s icons, including the 4¼-litre 'Embiricos' Special, WO Bentley’s own 8-Litre from 1930, a Gurney Nutting Speed Six, a 1948 Pininfarina Mark VI and also a Continental GT Zagato.

Not only that, but if you head to the Cartier Style et Luxe Lawn you’ll also be able to see at least six R-Type Continentals on show.

In addition, more Bentleys will complete the hillclimb than ever before, including EXP2, the first Bentley to go racing (in 1921 and ’22), the Number 2 1929 Birkin Blower and the Bentley that won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2003.

3. Citroën’s centenary celebrations

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
The BMW 850CSi-based Art Car (left) and the V12 LMR, the latter pictured at the 2016 FoS

While we’re on the subject of 100th-birthday parties, we have to mention Citroën which, of course, has also hit the big 1-0-0 this year.

The marque is remaining pretty tight-lipped regarding the classics it’s taking to FoS, other than reassuring us that it will showcase its rich heritage – however, we do know that a Traction Avant and a 2CV will take to the hill.

There will also be a classic-inspired glimpse of the future with the Ami One Concept, first shown at this year’s Geneva show.

And don’t forget that up on the Forest Rally Stage, the Citroën Total World Rally Team will be running a C3 WRC car, Sébastien Ogier, Esapekka Lappi and Mads Østberg sharing driving duties.

4. Pagani hits 20

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
The Huayra is one Pagani that will star at FoS © Harry Elliott Photography

We’re amazed that this Italian hypercar brand is already two decades old – but when it provides an excuse to see and hear its fantastic cars, we’re not complaining.

In fact, the plan is to set a UK record gathering for the largest number of Paganis when around 30 Zonda and Huayra models come together – that’ll be a display worth over £100m!

There will be a record 20-Zonda parade on the Thursday of FoS for the marque’s 20th, plus five cars from the Pagani Museum will be on show including the very first Zonda and even Horacio Pagani will be there.

5. Mini’s 60th

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
Paddy Hopkirk/Henry Liddon en route to Monte-Carlo rally victory in January 1964 © Motorsport Images

We’re sorry, yes, this is another anniversary – and another British one at that. But we can’t overlook Mini as it turns 60.

Indeed, with Paddy Hopkirk and Henry Liddon’s 1964 Monte-Carlo rally-winning car on show at FoS, we reckon a Mini could be one of the most famous cars at the event.

Hopkirk himself will be on Mini’s stand on the Saturday, as well as a host of new models, plus the David Bowie Classic Mini. 

6. Some classic Lotus racers

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
Jim Clark’s Type 25 F1 car is coming to Goodwood © Classic Team Lotus

While we’re sure much of the Norfolk-based brand’s emphasis will be on teasing its new Type 130, which is set to launch on 16 July, we’re excited that Classic Team Lotus is also bringing along several classics, including Jim Clark’s Type 25, all of which will be driven up the hill. 

Clive Chapman will be driving the Lotus 18 chassis 912 in which Stirling Moss won at Monaco in 1961, Al Unser and Clark’s Indy 500 Type 38 will be piloted by its owner, Nick Fennell, while Damon Hill will take the wheel of his father’s Lotus 49, the only car to have twice won the Monaco Grand Prix – both times with Graham Hill at the wheel.

Also at FoS will be the most successful F1 design ever, the Lotus 72. Chassis five will be reunited with its driver, Emerson Fittipaldi, who took it to the drivers’ and constructors’ crowns in 1972, while Jacky Ickx will also be driving it this weekend.

In addition, Mario Andretti’s F1 title-winning Lotus 79/2 will be there, driven by Lee Mowle, a British GT competitor and Classic Team Lotus customer. This was one of the cars Andretti drove en route to the 1978 championship.

7. A feisty Ford

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
1980 Ford Zakspeed Turbo Capri race

Yes, guilty as charged, it’s yet another anniversary: the half-century of the Ford Capri. And, to mark this, Ford is bringing a 1980 Zakspeed Turbo Capri racing car to Goodwood.

Sadly, that seems like it might be it for Blue Oval classics, from the manufacturer, at least.

Still, you’ll be well served if you’re interested in new models, 2019 Le Mans and WRC contenders or drifting, the latter courtesy of star Ken Block and Champion drifter Vaughn Gittin Jr.

8. An electric Mustang

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
Jim Clark’s Lotus 25 is coming to Goodwood (pic: LAT)

Talking of classic Fords, we’re neatly segueing to this, the Charge Mustang, which, as we recently revealed, will make its debut at this weekend’s Festival of Speed.

For all its classic looks, though, there’s nothing remotely old about it. Those lines come from a licensed fastback shell, power’s courtesy of a 64kWh battery pack and electric motors which combine to give a very healthy 469bhp, and it will hit 60mph from a standstill in under four seconds.

Charge Automotive plans to build 499 of its fully electric Mustangs and we’re sure it will garner plenty of attention at Goodwood.

9. The return of De Tomaso

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
Sorry, there won’t be a Mangusta at FoS – as far as we know!

While we’re on the subject of 21st-century revivals, let’s talk De Tomaso. Yes, really. And, no, this isn’t a classic car, but it draws on a rich classic heritage.

The global reveal of the new De Tomaso supercar is scheduled for 10.30am Thursday as the new owners of the brand’s name celebrate its 60th anniversary (sorry, that’s another anniversary!).

10. A trio of classic BMWs

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
This is one of three classic BMWs at the 2019 Festival of Speed

The car above is the 328 Mille Miglia Touring Coupé, which won the Mille Miglia in 1940 in a then-record time, and it is one of a trio of BMW classics you can expect to see at the Sussex show. 

Joining it will be BMW’s most successful touring car, the M3 E30, plus another winner – the V12 LMR that took top honours at Le Mans in 1999, which will be driven this weekend by Steve Soper.

11. A Porsche 917 bonanza

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
A Porsche 917K tears up the Goodwood hill (credit: LAT/Motorsport Images)

Goodwood’s already reverberated to the sound of the mighty Porsche 917 once this year, with a parade of the Le Mans-winning Stuttgart machines starring at April’s Members’ Meeting.

The Festival of Speed will repeat the trick, with 12 of the beasts tackling the hill, while bedecked in such evocative liveries as Martini, Gulf, Salzburg and Sunoco.

The line-up spans the gamut from the 917’s original 1969 form through the all-conquering 917K and up to the Can-Am killing 917/30. The long-tailed 917LH will be worth looking out for, as will the stunning 917 P/A in its white-and-blue Porsche / Audi livery.

12. A mighty McLaren

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
The McLaren M8D in action at Goodwood (credit: LAT/Motorsport Images)

You can expect to see plenty of modern-day McLarens at Goodwood this weekend, but one older car to look out for is the M8D. 

This racer stands out in McLaren’s history for both good and bad reasons: it enjoyed great success in the Can-Am championship, but was also the car in which Bruce McLaren lost his life.

Designed for the 1970 Can-Am season and based on the preceding M8C, the M8D was powered by a 7.6-litre Chevrolet V8 and could produce a whopping 670bhp. McLaren was testing it at Goodwood in June 1970 when he spun and was thrown from the cockpit, dying instantly. 

The season opened just days later, with Denny Hulme partnered by first Dan Gurney and later Peter Gethin, and the car proved all-but unbeatable, with Hulme winning nine out of 10 rounds to clinch the title.

The FoS will see the current generation of McLaren stars put it through its paces, with Carlos Sainz Jr and Lando Norris behind the wheel.

13. A tribute to Le Mans ’69

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
The 1969 Le Mans 24 Hours was one of the race’s closest finishes (credit: LAT/Motorsport Images)

It’s 50 years since one of the most famous of all Le Mans 24 Hours races, and the Festival of Speed will mark the anniversary with a tribute.

Jacky Ickx and Jackie Oliver will be reunited with the iconic Gulf-liveried Ford GT40 in which they won that race by a whisker from a Porsche 908, and will take turns at driving it up Goodwood’s hill.

With other cars and drivers from the event also set to feature, it should make for quite the spectacle. 

14. An auction spectacular

Classic & Sports Car – The best classic cars at the 2019 Festival of Speed
Maybe £1.25m for this Ford GT40?

No Goodwood festival would be complete without a Bonhams auction, and the 2019 FoS continues that tradition in some style.

A total of 85 vehicles will go under the hammer at the sale, which takes place on Friday (5 July), in addition to a massive haul of automobilia, numberplates and a few choice pedal cars.

Choosing highlights is no easy task, but Nigel Mansell’s title-winning 1992 Williams FW14B stands out, as does the 1934 Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 ‘Long Chassis’ that our own Mick Walsh was lucky enough to drive (and write about) recently.

Other treats include a 1966 Ford GT40, the 1907 Métallurgique-Maybach and one of the most important Bentleys ever built: the Le Mans-winning Old Mother Gun.

Want more? We’ve rounded up our 20 favourites from the auction here.


20 of the best cars from Bonhams’ Festival of Speed sale

Record breakers to be remembered at 2019 Festival of Speed

Ickx and Oliver to drive their Le Mans-winning GT40 at FoS