Goodwood Revival 2009

By Mel Herman

Everyone I had spoken to about the Goodwood Revival says what a great event it is. I have been to many Classic race meetings and expected just another of the same. Wasn't I wrong.

The sheer volume of great cars, the enthusiasm of those attending in period costume, the sideshows and events put on by the organizers all, in my mind, add up to a fantastic, not to be missed spectacle with something for all the family. The Henly and Ascot for Classic Cars.

I only managed to get there for Saturday so didn't manage to see the Freddie March race the following day in which the Allards were entered. But the racing I did see was exceptional with Sir Sterling Moss who unfortunately had to retire when the OSCA he was driving in the Lavant Cup started to play up. The Barry Sheene motor cycle race also provided some thrilling action between riders including a few spills but fortunately no injuries.

This Goodwood event celebrated Sir Sterling's 80th birthday which was on the 17th. Interestingly in 1948, one day after his 19th birthday, he won the first ever Goodwood Meeting in a Cooper 500. Considered by many to be Britain's greatest all-round racing driver he did come second behind Sydney in the 1952 Monte Carlo Rally!

I managed to see the 2 Allards in the pits. Chris Phillips J2X and Dean Butler's J2R. There was no one with the cars and I was concerned to see one of the cylinder heads from Dean's car lying beside it. I heard from Dean yesterday and he said that there was a problem they couldn't identify and so, wisely, decided not to race on the Sunday.

The Freddie March Memorial Trophy was a twenty-five minute race for 1952-1955 cars. Chris Phillips finished 13th out of 27 starters with a time of 26.41.131 against the winning Lagonda V12 Le Mans of Darren McWhirter at 25.10.515. A good effort against some very stiff competition.

One of the highlights of the Saturday was to see the only airworthy Avro Vulcan bomber in the air again after its £6million restoration. The thunderous roar as it flew past and went into a climb immediately overhead was earth shattering. There were plenty more Classic Planes on display and in the air. The Battle of Britain flyby included the Lancaster, Spitfire and Hurricanes and the reconstructed veteran Vickers Vimy was an amazing in flight view of one of the earliest planes.

The Bonhams auction took place on the Friday evening and the Allard Safari , OUE 79, chassis no. P2 4009, sold for £28,750 ($46,000). One of only four remaining of the original 10 built, this one had been nicely restored in 1992. More recent expenditure included £2000 removing and replacing defective woodwork to the body sides.

I'm looking forward to next year's event and hope that we can get a few more of our cars there.

Chris Phillips Allard J2X

   P1 in the Classic Car showcase car park

Tony Dron, Classic car racer, columnist and Allard enthusiast

 Stan & Ollie