Goodwood 73rd Members Meeting

When you get an invite to go to Goodwood, for me no matter what the event the iconic venue trumps anything already in the diary, especially when it’s The Goodwood 73rd Members Meeting and historic motor racing. I don’t know what it is about the place that makes it feel so special to me, maybe it’s the attention to detail and the preservation of the period look and feel that is everywhere around the place…anyway it’s my favourite motorsport venue in the UK by far.

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The forgotten stars of Motorsport – Buster

There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes of a Motorsport team from the mechanics and technicians to the Marketing guys and transport teams…but not many consider the tools that if weren’t there, no-one would go racing. The tools in this case are the trucks and specifically the iconic Porsche Truck also known as Buster.

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Silverstone Classic – Porsche a True Romance

Classic Porsche – True Romance

As the morning mist lifted the crisp air filled with rawtie exhaust notes, over-fuel backfire pops and the unmistakable noise of air-cooled engines  downshifting at speed through the Maggots-Becketts and Chapel complex.  A mind boggling sensory overload that hit you as soon as stepping through the turn-styles of the Silverstone Classic.

The Silverstone paddock was full to the brim with classic race machines and car enthusiasts, re-capturing the sounds and smells from the bygone era of motor racing. Bearing witness to the near forgotten legends of the track, spectators mixed with mechanics adjusting and perfecting the set up on their vintage machines, whilst drivers donned their race suits preparing to do battle, all in a hedonistic petrol fuelled mix.

Porsche 356 - Silver Classic

Making our way to to the National paddock, glancing through a garage onto the pit straight a Porsche 356 screeched to a halt, the  driver frantically got out, did a lap of the car and clambered back into his race machine before screeching off  to the high fives of his mechanics. Onlookers reveled in what they were witnessing…one of Stuttgart’s finest creations being driven and driven hard.

Red Porsche 356 - Silverstone Classic

Once the racing had finished 3 Porsche 356 race bred Outlaws, 1 red and black from the UK and 2 cream liveried up German owned cars rolled into the Pit Garages for a well earned rest, the warm smell of mechanicals, brakes and tyres still fresh as fans swarmed to get up close.

Porsche 356 - Silverstone Classic

Silverstone classic - Porsche 356

No getting lost here, spot the map next to the steering wheel…Silverstone is one of the fastest tracks on any motorsport calendar and whilst these Porsche 356’s wouldn’t be getting anywhere near the speeds of some of the other machines on show, you can bet they were having fun doing getting close.

Porsche 356 - Silverstone Classic 2

Porsche 356 - SIlverstone Classic German

It’s always recommended that a good breakfast is the best way to start the day…

Porsche 356 - Silverstone Classic

Silverstone CLassic - Porsche 356

Porsche 356 Silverstone

There was a certain sense of romance about watching 3 Porsche 356 outlaw blast around the circuit at the Silverstone Classic, seeing these rare machines in an environment not many are used to – on the race track – was truly a special moment.

Up close and personal – Silverstone Classic 2014

In my previous post I shared some of the out and out race cars that descended on the Silverstone Classic Internatinal paddock. I took so many pictures I thought it only right to share some more – this time from the National Paddock and various display cars on the club stands.

Silverstone Classic - BMW CSL E9

BMW sponsored the Silverstone Classic this year having a large presence including a stonking great big Ferris wheel, although that was cool in it’s own right what lay in the shadows was way cooler – the cream of crop from the BMW Car Club. The E9 CSL is a car I just can’t help drooling over, the lines are so clean yet the front end is one of the aggressive BMW have ever put on a car. This stunning example was the bell of the ball for me out of the heavy weight line up of classic Bavarian metal.

BMW e9  CSL - BMW Car Club GB - Silverstone Classic 2014

I got chatting with the owner, John – a really nice friendly retired engineer in the British military. Among the tales of how the E9 CSL came about in the early 70’s, he told me that he wasn’t to be seen to be picking up a spanner at work in order to maintain rank with his engineers. To sooth his engineering itch he restored this beautiful E9 back to it’s full glory in the evenings and at weekends, keeping it from his colleagues. You can never keep a car guy and an engineer away from his tools for too long. Hopefully more on this car in the near future…

Blue E9 CSL - Silverstone Classic

Another mint CSL E9 finished in Baikal Blue Metallic basked in the glorious sunshine. The body work was so straight and true on this example it looked like it could have rolled off the assembly line that day. It’s clear that the BMW car club guys put some serious work into their cars.

BMW Alpina Engine - Silverstone Classic

There was a pretty wild BMW 2002 Tii wearing some big over fenders and smoothed to within an inch of it’s life, despite me not getting any pics of the actual car this thing had a pretty special party piece though, an Alpina E10. An engine which to the un trained eye just looks like another engine but to anyone that knows would stop you in your tracks and prompt a “what the f…. that’s rare and cool”…which is exactly what I did.

Bright yellow E9 BMW - Silverstone Classic

The E9 isn’t to everyones taste in Golf Yellow but it looked the buts against the bright blue sky over Silverstone.

BMW 7 Series - Silverstone Classic 2014

This early 7 series had a deep south America style vibe to it which I really dig’d. I could picture this cruising the streets of Nola with it’s white wall tyres, chrome arches and vinyl details.

E21 BMW 3 Series - Silverstone Classic

I’m a sucker for a clean E21, they have become a popular platform for modifying with some sweet examples doing the rounds on the scene, it’s rare to see one in such original form.

Alfa Romeo GTV - Silverstone Classic

Away from the BMW Car Club stand and into the National Paddock – Off to the side in a little corner was this oh so clean and painfully beautiful Alfa Romeo GTV. The Bertone designer Giorgetto Giugiaro penned such a stunning and timeless design with this series of sports coupe, bello.

Alfa Romeo Front - GTV Silverstone Classic

The Alfa 1750 GTV was introduced in 1968. Designed to be the most sporting in the Alfa range, the Gran Turismo Veloce – Veloce meaning Fast in Italian, did not disappoint. A peppy 4 cylinder light weight alloy block engine produced over 120 horsepower. Coupled with improved braking and suspension compared to earlier ‘fast’ Alfa models meant the Gran Turismo Veloce formed a great tuning base for motorsport.

Alfa Romeo GTV - Silverstone Classic

Competing at the famous Targa Florio in 1923, Alfa Romeo driver Ugo Sivocci added a four-leafed clover symbol, known as Quadrifoglio Verde in Italian, for luck on the deep red bodywork of his Alfa Romeo RL. Ever since, the Cloverleaf has symbolised the sporting heart of Alfa Romeo, recognised and celebrated by Alfisti throughout the world.

Afla GTV 1750 Interior - Silverstone Classic

The sculpted design of the dash and instrument clusters that channels the drivers eye are still used to this day in a lot of modern Alfa’s. I particularly liked the after market fan, and to me sums up the discerning Alfa driver – sacrificing functionality over style and performance.

Alfa GTV 1750 Rear End - Silverstone Classic

Despite the connotations around Alfa Romeo..the oil leaks and relaiability issues, it’s said you’re not a true car guy until you’ve owned an Alfa. This is definitely on the bucket list and hopefully another car that will grace these very pages in the near future.

Escort Mk1 - Silverstone Classic

These two Ford Escort MK1’s couldn’t be any different if they tried, apart from the lairy canary yellow paint work of course. It was a stunning before and after example of how much work and design goes into building a race car.

Porsche 356 Outlaw race car - Silverstone Classic

As previously mentioned the Silverstone Classic allowed you to get up close and personal with the cars and after sweet talking a Marshall the racing and pitstops too…it was very nostalgic looking on from the pit garage as this Porsche 356 screeched to a stop before it’s driver jumped out, did a lap of the car before jumping back in and peeling out again. I think I even turned round and gave my girlfriend a hi-five…super cool.

Pitlane action - Silverstone Classic

The Silverstone Classic is an event that any car guy,old or young, big or small must visit. It’s on par with the Goodwood Festival of Speed allowing you to get your mechanical fix whilst watching some of the very best frantic Motorsport from the packed frantic grids.

Silverstone Classic 2014 – In The Garages

Silverstone Classic 2014 – Historic Motorsport Icons

When you think of a British Motorsport venue your thoughts jumps straight to Silverstone in leafy Buckinghamshire – so there’s nowhere better in my opinion to hold a Classic and Vintage Motorsport event. The Silverstone Classic 2014 was a last minute deal for me, I’d heard about the event but never attended and after seeing all the Classic LeMans coverage, I was itching to get my yearly dose of Classic Motorsport.

It all came about one evening surfing the internet when suddenly the memory of a conversation with a colleague about the show popped into my head, a quick investigation later and two tickets were winging their way to me in the post. The lucky recipient of the second ticket…my very patient girlfriend, boy was she in for a treat.

With the promise of historic F1, classic LeMans and early naughties ‘money no object’ British Touring Cars – the alarm was set for 5:45am…the early bird always catches the worm and man what a worm.
Maserati 1930's F1 - Silverstone Classic 2014
The first stop on arrival (after coffee) was the International Paddock, the early start was made better (for me anyway) by what greeted us. Empty pit garages with unprecedented access to some of the most iconic race cars in the business, WIN. It had the feel of a museum before opening, to the point that my girlfriend kept asking “if we were meant to be there”, it all seemed too good to be true. The sheer openness to roam around the garages whilst last minute prep was being done by race mechanics was simply amazing. I was like a giddy fat kid in a sweet shop.
Maserati 1930's F1 Car - Silverstone Classic 2014
Maserati 1930's V12 F1 Car - SIlverstone Classic 2014
It’s not often you can get this up close to some Motorsport greats, often we as spectators are kept at arms length to the cars and drivers but not at the Silverstone Classic. Drivers, mechanics, marshalls all mixed with visitors in pure petrol head harmony…I likened the atmosphere to the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Whilst FoS is a special event in itself you’re still not able to get too close to the cars or drivers.
Yardley McLaren F1 Car - Silverstone Classic 2014
Maserati F1 Car Wheel Hub - Silverstone Classic 2014
1000 cars competed over the weekend in over 20 frantic races, the grids were huge and provided for some non-stop trading of paint throughout the weekend. I couldn’t keep up with the wealth of cars on show and on the track but I’m not going to lie, whilst the racing was fantastic and thrilling to watch, I was more concerned about getting up close to the machines.
Mini Cooper S - Silverstone Classic 2014
Silverstone Classic 2014 - Mini Cooper S
Because the Silverstone Classic 2014 was such a late call I didn’t have many expectations. I was literally left brain numb (in a good way) from the whole experience – the atmosphere was great, everyone I came across in the car clubs were so passionate about their cars and wow the cars…
Jaguar race car - Silverstone Classic 2014
Jaguar racecar - SIlverstone Classic
Jaguar race car - Silverstone Classic 2014
wheels and Jag Silverstone Classic 2014
BMW E9 CSL GT Car - Silverstone Classic 2014

The images here are a small sample of what was on show in and around the International Paddock set in the stunning new start finish straight pit building. I have lots more coverage from the Silverstone Classic planned, including some of the cars from the National Paddock, some of the many club cars on show as well as a selection of the best Porsche’s at the show. Stay tuned…


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Goodwood Festival of Speed 2014 – High octane fuel and manor houses

The sound of screaming engines, tyre smoke, hi-octane fuel and fighter jets replaced the tranquil sound of chirping birds at the Goodwood House this last weekend in West Sussex, England. The Goodwood Festival of Speed is the event for any petrol head since it’s creation in 1993 and for 4 days is home to some of the most historic race cars of all time.

No where on the planet can you watch vintage Cafe Racer Norton race bikes, F1 cars at full chat from every era, mad drift cars going sideways up the hill and NASCAR’s burning tyres as if they grow on the trees (that’s just a very small sample) and all in a stunning setting…there is simply nothing like it in the world.

It was always going to be a mixed show for me as I was working all weekend (doing the day job) so couldn’t explore it like a visitor, but every opportunity I got I took the chance to take in the atmosphere, wander around the paddocks and hill climb and get up close and personal to some of the most famous and amazing machines and people on show.

Audi_90_Quattro_Goodwood FoS

The Audi 90 Quattro IMSA GTO was one of the stars of the show for me making a triumphant return to the hill in serious style, 720bhp from a turbo charged 5 cylinder…epic

BBS Turbo fan_Audi 90

BBS Turbo fans work so well…

Ayrton Senna John Player Special

Goodwood Festival of Speed is unique in the respect that it is the only motorsport event outside of the Forumula 1 calendar that attracts the majority of current F1 teams…although there was a lot on show the bygone era cars were simply amazing. Ayrton Senna’s John Player Special F1 Turbo era car attracted a lot of attention and carries so much history and pedigree.

Ayrton Senna Honda McLaren Formula 1 Car

Another epic Ayrton racer was his championship Honda powered Mclaren…where else do you see a line up like this?

Mercedes_silver Arrow_Goodwood_FoS

Mercedes were celebrating 120 years of motor racing at Goodwood FoS, aside from the stunning sculpture arching over the house, also on show were a fleet of Silver Arrows, including this beauty. A huge highlight for me was watching Sterling Moss drive past me on a golf buggy wearing his light blue racing suit and leather loafers on his way to piloting a silver arrow up the Goodwood hillclimb. Again where else!

John Surtees Collection - F1

The collection of Surtees cars was again something to behold and beautifully presented…

Vintage LM racer Surtees

Vintage cafe racer bikes

More from the paddock…


Mazda LM cars

Renault 5 Turbo_GoodwoodFoS

Goodwood Festival of speed drop top

Aside from all of the Motorsport metal on show in the paddocks there were some seriously cool and well built rat rods that made it into the festival with their own beach. The Model A big block rat rods got a lot of attention and didn’t look out of place at all among the historic racers.

Rat rods_Goodwood Festival of Speed


USDisplay1-Chevy Drop Side

ShelbyMustang_Goodwood FOS



There’s nothing like a priceless Shelby Mustang race car.



Despite all of the cars shredding up the track there were some seriously cool motorbikes on show and man did they sound incredible…they gave the turbo era F1 cars a run for their money!


The Porsche car club had a seriously clean Porsche 356 on show, the history if the car read that it was swapped in 1980 for a VW Golf…I bet the previous owner is kicking himself.



The 356 is the Grandfather of the Porsche 911 and is Ferdinand Porsche’s first creation. The 356 is simply stunning and this is an exceptional example.


Finally the Players crew were out in force and had some of the UK’s premier modified metal on show…it’s quite an honour for them to be invited to Goodwood FoS and is a testament to the quality and craftmanship that goes into their builds. The Playdat Datsun 610 pickup dropped on airride air bags with a custom fabricated frame held it’s own on the Goodwood estate.



A Volvo brick on air? Rollhard’s brickie baffled the motorsport crowd and got some serious attention





Last but by no means least is Milestone71‘s Porsche 964 finished in a stunning pink and dropped on over sized Fuch’s built by Rotiform. The rear form of the 964 just gets me everytime, the shape that fades away progressively into the rear bumper flowing around over the rear wheels give the car such stance when it’s lowered on the deck.


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