It’s one of the most iconic of all BMWs and the star of a legendary race series – now the BMW M1 Procar is to get its own showcase at the 77th Goodwood Members’ Meeting.
The high-speed demonstration will be one of three to take place at this year’s Members' Meeting, alongside the 12 full races and their practice sessions.
The other two demonstrations will be announced soon, but frankly we’d be amazed if they were even half as exciting as this one.
For those of you not familiar with the BMW M1 Procar Championship, it was a single-make contest in which an impressive line-up of past, present and future stars from Formula One, Touring Cars and the World Sportscar Championship did battle in identical M1 cars.
These were no ‘ordinary’ M1s, though: a team led by Paul Rosche was let loose on the road car’s M88 straight-six and duly created the M88/1; this packed 470bhp to the standard engine’s 277bhp.
The cars also gained aerodynamic improvements including a deeper spoiler and rear wings, plus alloy wheels and a roll cage, and were finely honed by various outfits including F1’s BS Fabrications and Ron Dennis’ Project Four Formula 2 team.
The series was devised by BMW Motorsport supremo Jochen Neerpasch and ran as a support act to the F1 World Championship in ’79 and ’80.
Niki Lauda won the inaugural competition – beating the likes of Hans-Joachim Stuck, Clay Regazzoni and Nelson Piquet – while Piquet triumphed the following year.
Certainly the drivers seemed to love it. Stuck, who competed in both seasons, has said of it, “The Procar race was usually better than the Grand Prix itself. I loved racing those cars, it was the best thing ever, incredibly competitive and those straight-six engines made a wonderful noise.”
Will Kinsman, Head of Motorsport Content at Goodwood, added, “The Procar championship has achieved almost mythical status as the ultimate F1 support series.
“These fabulous cars are seldom seen on track together, so we are incredibly excited to have them in action at the 77th Members’ Meeting.
“The team is working hard to secure as many cars as possible, and hope some of the drivers from the original two seasons will join us at the Motor Circuit in April for what will be a stunning sight and sound.”
Images: Motorsport Images