Tel's tales Issue 009 - 27th April 2013Goodwood :Speed Series
This report was was compiled by Simon Broadbridge
A small (but some say perfectly formed) Westfield contingent of Pete Goulding (class F), John Loudon (class C) and Simon Broadbridge (class A) converged in the Goodwood paddock on a chilly but bright Saturday morning. The limited entry was the result of a number of factors, including the clash with events at Wiscombe and Aintree, serious concerns over track monitoring of noise levels (more on that later) and perhaps some difficult memories of the event last year. The first challenge of the day, beyond keeping warm, was static noise tests. All survived, attended the rather informal driver's briefing and then practice commenced. A new format of 1.8 laps (4.4 miles) was employed for all runs, with the start in the pit lane and the finish (on the second lap) between Woodcote and the chicane. Pete was quickest in practice, followed by John then Simon, but the drive-by sound tests led to a visit from the marshall for both Pete and John. Some attempts at adjustments were made, and then we proceeded to the first timed runs. A small shower of hail, before starting, came to nothing and again, Pete led by a good margin followed by John, with Simon a second or so further behind. Then came the crunch; both Pete and John had further trouble with the drive-by sound tests. Given the choice between exclusion with loss of any recorded times and calling it a day, Pete and John opted for the latter. Simon continued with 2 further timed runs; he was baulked in the first having caught the Locost ahead of him at Lavant on the second lap, but then managed to shave a couple of seconds of his best time in his third run to sneak ahead of John but remaining behind Pete. Given that conditions were improving, there's no doubt that John and Pete would have improved further given the opportunity of further runs.
Holding a car on the limit of traction between the apexes of Lavant before exiting onto the straight at 90+mph, following in the tracks of some of the greatest cars and drivers ever seen, is an amazing experience. Every element of the venue is seasoned with motor racing history. However, Goodwood seems to be a place full of paradoxes. There have been plenty of triumphs but also tragedies, some very recent. The exhilaration of driving an historic, quick track is combined with the frustration and disappointment associated with noise restrictions. The inclusion of Goodwood in the schedule for next year's Speed Series is a topic that will warrant consideration, but the event, as first run at Goodwood, will live in the memory of this Speed Series correspondent for a long time. If nothing else, hearing and seeing a Spitfire take off while you're waiting for a run is very special…. .
Comment from Terry : Did the noise of the Spitfire taking off pass the noise test?
The SSOT will need to consider opinions about whether to bother including this venue next year. If only 3 people entered and paid good money and then 2 of them had to withdraw that does not seem good value for money.