Goodwood Revival Weekend, Guest Post by Ian Skelton

NEWS & STORIES, PICS

Goodwood Revival weekend is a one off when it comes to motorsport. This fantastic event shares a lot with the Silverstone Classic. Flat out wheel-to-wheel racing on the track with hundreds of rare and priceless cars, from historic yesteryear of motorsport. In addition there are also vintage aircraft on display both on the ground & exciting flying displays.

What really sets it apart though, is the period dress worn by the vast majority of the spectating crowds. Ladies in their furs and frocks, gentlemen in their tweeds and trilbies all help to create the uniquely stylish atmosphere that sets the Revival apart from all other motor racing events. It is quite simply a photographer’s dream both on & off the track….

Saturday

I was awake & on the road before dawn making my way to Goodwood Circuit, the sky looked like a great sunrise was on offer. Sadly as I drove on hoping to find a pretty scene to use, the promised rain clouds rolled in & blocked any hope of a photo…..Ah well can’t capture every photo I see! Car parked, I grabbed my gear & headed off to media accreditation. Even though I was deputising for Diego as he couldn’t make it, Gema & her team had everything ready for me. Modern PRESS wristband was clipped on & my period brown card ‘luggage tag’ tie-on PRESS PASS tied to my upper arm, I was ready for action!

On jobs like this where I need to move around a lot, I use a belt kit systems round my waist. This has pouches for extra lenses, spare batteries & memory cards etc. On each shoulder will be a Nikon Pro body camera, one with wide lens, the other with a zoom. I also sling a big long reaching lens over my left shoulder…all in all, over 15kg (35lbs in old money) of kit. The weather forecast was 95% certain of rain, so I had wedged an umbrella through my kit belt. Now I had been given my media pack of programme, race timetable & other goodies to add to my load. I headed out onto trackside looking like something out of Rambo!! I took 1 photo & promptly nearly dropped a camera off a shoulder….I had to go back to the car & lose the umbrella & media kit before it became a very expensive trip.

It wasn’t long before those rain clouds started to deliver their loads. It didn’t stop the action on the track though.

It didn’t stop us photographers either….even if my umbrella was one of the things returned to the car!!

It rained & it rained. By the time The St Mary’s Trophy race for celebrity drivers in identical Austin A30 & A35 saloons arrived, the umbrellas were out in force…

Goodwood Revival weekend isn’t just about the on track activities. It’s also about all the characters that dress up in period costumes…the rain didn’t stop them having fun either.

But still it rained….& harder too.

The cameras were taking a beating even with their excellent Nikon weather sealing they were starting to fog up. Time to retreat to the media tent for one last coffee & dry the gear yet again before calling it a day.

Sunday

My dawn broke over a Spitfire…doesn’t that happen to everybody?

Goodwood Revival isn’t just about cars & costumes, it’s also about the aviation of the period too. Goodwood was also a squadron base in the Battle of Britain. Then called RAF Westhampnett it was home to Spitfires, Hurricanes & Mustangs. So it was great to see the collection of old aircraft on the ground & the spectacular flying displays.

As promised the rain had gone, replaced by hot sun & fabulous blue sky. With is came a whole new array of costumes around the circuit. Everybody was now in full swing & really enjoying their Goodwood Revival weekend to the full. It was wayyyyyyy too hot for me to be wearing my tweed jacket, I was melting…. but wearing it seemed a good way of drying it out!!

The cars were now handling much better on the dry tarmac & were being pushed to the limits. I find it absolutely amazing that the drivers of these old & often incredibly valuable cars, hold nothing back on the track.

Goodwood Revival weekend isn’t just about the on track activities & the period costumes. Or the fantastic aviation on display (this is beginning to sound a bit like “What have the Romans ever done for us?”)….its also about the kiddies! The Settrington Cup is a race for children in their vintage Austin J40 Pedal Cars. Trust me the competition is just as fierce & determined as the full sized race cars have been.

If all this going on wasn’t enough Goodwood Revival is visited by some true Legends of the sport (see photos below the post).

My Goodwood Revival weekend ended tired & achey, but I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it…well almost every minute, I could have done without some of Saturday. My elbow pads were still damp!! It was my first time to Goodwood Revival & I will state now it certainly not be my last! Even Mrs S has said she wants to go as it looks so much fun!

Please enjoy a large collection of photos from the event in Photo Galleries or below this post.

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Pen 2 the Paper & Camera 2 the Eye