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Smokin’ the Festival of Speed

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It was the Goodwood Festival of Speed’s great return to normal. Big crowds, great cars and some real legends going up the hill, both on two and four wheels.

The big talking point was of course the return of Wayne Rainey on a 500 cc-bike. The three-time world champion was left paralysed after a fall at Misano in 1993. By relocating the rear brake and the gearshift mechanism to the handlebars, Rainey was able to ride his Yamaha YZR500 again. And not just that, but he rode in the company of Mick Doohan, Kevin Schwantz and Kenny Roberts. A ride of legends, that it was for sure.

Photo Goodwood

The comeback of ‘our Nige’

Another man who has more than happy to be in Goodwood was Nigel Mansell, who had a very busy weekend. The 1992 Formula 1 world champion was back in ‘red five’, the Williams-Renault FW14B that took him to the world title thirty years ago. Mansell also drove the V12 Ferrari 639 and 640, and a Lotus 25 which he later called ‘the best car I’ve ever driven.’

Photo Goodwood/John Nguyen /PA Wire

New Porsche 963

With Jackie Stewart, Jacky Ickx, Tom Kristensen, Damon Hill, Mika Häkkinen, Jenson Button and Mark Webber, motorsport’s ‘who is who’ had assembled ‘en masse’ at the Duke of Richmond’s home. One of the very special guests was Derek Bell, celebrating his 80th birthday in style in a Porsche 956. Porsche also showed its new Le Mans challenger, the 963 that will compete in the LMDh class in 2023 and in IMSA.

Photo Porsche AG

BMW display

BMW was the celebrated marque, with a spectacular display worked out around 50 years of BMW Motorsport. Plenty of cars from the museum came in action on the hill, with Steve Soper driving the V12 LMR on Friday. With the Brabham BT52B, the CSL ‘Batmobile’ and the Z4, there was plenty of BMW power to be seen on the hill.

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Photo BMW Group

Electric and blindingly fast

Mercedes F1 driver George Russell and Alfa Romeo driver Zhou Guanyu put on a show in more modern machinery. Fastest lap came from the astonishing McMurty Spéirling, a ridiculously small, almost comical electric car. It combines an electrical powertrain with two fans creating downforce. It has around 1000 hp and weighs just 1000 kilos. Touring car driver Tom Chilton beat the all-out record on the hill that was set by the VW I.D. in 1999. The new record to beat is now 39.08 seconds.

Photo Goodwood/Nick Dungan

A small video impression? This way.

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