Goodwood: Stuck in traffic.

In any other situation, a dude frantically whistling and shouting to prevent you from crossing the street would be an annoying nuisance. Not so the Goodwood Festival of Speed. In fact, upon hearing that whistle, the sense of excitement is palpable when the crowd parts to create a thoroughfare.
“What will it be?” is the collective thought, and you’ll find out soon enough. In some cases it’ll just be a golf cart ferrying team members, drivers or special guests around the site, in others it’ll be a team van coming in with vital parts, fluids or comestibles.  Best, though, is when it’s a racing car. Or two. Or an entire procession of them.


This is a Chaparral-Chevrolet 2E; often described as one of the most influential rally cars of all time. Certainly, what it brought to the science of race car aerodynamics in 1966 was worth paying attention to. I suspect a few scoffed at the faintly ridiculous looking adjustable aerofoil, but the titters would have rapidly subsided.
The 2.0-litre V8 of this ’66 Alfa Romeo T33/2, made a noise that I’m unlikely to forget any time soon, as if its looks aren’t memorable enough. Like so many cars that I’ve rarely seen in the flesh, the diminutive size of the Alfa caught me by surprise. Frequently seen vividly photographed on the pages of a glossy book or magazine, it’s a shape that many of us know all too well, but a beautifully captured portrait rarely does much to portray scale, or lack thereof.

A piece of rolling history, and no mistake. This is the first Lola-Chevrolet T70 ever built — an open top Spyder in which John Surtees himself won the 1965 Player’s 200 race at Mosport. A race held back when men were men and carburettor trumpets could suck the wax out of your ear if your helmet was a little too loose.

And this here is the first Lola ever built. The Lola-Climax Mk1. Genesis, if you will. It may have only packed a 1.1-litre engine from Coventry Climax, but was the first product for a company that would have a long and successful career, sadly petering out in 2012. The firm was named for a pop song, and not the Kinks track that I always associate with the name. In fact, ‘Whatever Lola Wants’ is from the 1955 film Damn Yankees, which I’ve never seen.

I love it when I encounter a machine I’ve not heard of, and this ‘Eldorado Special’ is a new one on me. I should be ashamed, really, as the 1958 Two Worlds trophy sounds like it might have been rather fun, and I’ll be sure to do a little more research later on. This one was driven to 10th place at Monza in ’58 by none other than Sterling Moss. But then pretty much every race car of the late 50s through much of the sixties seems to have a Moss link of some description.

The BMW CSL ‘Batmobile’ has to rank among the most immediately recognisable GT racers of all time, and remains interesting despite concept ‘homages’ being trotted out with monotonous regularity. I suppose it’s inevitable, though, when you have a machine in your past that everybody loves, it’s bound to become something of a historical datum. The later M1 might have been sexier, but the Batmobile was BMW’s GT40.

And, while waiting for the traffic to disperse, what better treat than to catch a glimpse of Hans Stuck – quite good German racing driver and notorious hill-climb enthusiast, which makes him quite at home at Goodwood. One of the joys of The Festival of Speed is that it brings the racing cars of the past back together with the people who originally drove them, in this case providing me with a handy pun for the title.
(All images copyright Chris Haining / Hooniverse 2018)

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2 responses to “Goodwood: Stuck in traffic.”

  1. jim Avatar

    The Eldorado is actually a one-off Maserati with an interesting history:

  2. Rover 1 Avatar
    Rover 1

    ‘The Batmobile was BMW’s GT40.”
    And the M1 never quite was.