Following the recent announcement that the 2011 Festival of Speed (1-3 July) will include the largest celebration of 100 years of the famous Indianapolis 500 race outside of the USA, Goodwood can today (1st April) confirm that it is commencing construction work on the challenging Festival track to cover the entire 1.16-mile hillclimb with one million bricks.
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is affectionally known as the ‘Brickyard’ due to the circuit’s original dangerous dirt track being resurfaced with 3,100,000 bricks in late 1909 to improve safety. Today a yard of the original brick track remains at the celebrated American Speedway circuit.
Commenting on this special Indy 500 centenary initiative, Festival of Speed founder Lord March says: “Authenticity is absolutely fundamental to everything that we do at Goodwood, with all of the competition cars at the Festival appearing in their original livery for example, and often campaigned by their original drivers.”
Lord March continues: “We are taking the first 100 years of America’s most important motor race very seriously, so as well as having a line-up of 33 significant Indy cars (the number which traditionally start the 500) on the Goodwood Hill, plus many winning drivers and famous Indy 500 pageantry, we will be covering the Goodwood hillclimb with over a million bricks to accurately replicate the very first Indianapolis 500 mile race in 1911.”
A full grid of 33 Indy cars will be displayed together in the Formula One Paddock at the Festival, to create Goodwood’s very own Gasoline Alley. Indy car highlights will include Johnny Rutherford’s winning 1974 McLaren M16 and 1980 Chaparral 2K, the 1977 Coyote in which AJ Foyt scored his record-breaking fourth win, Bobby Unser’s 1981 Penske which was finally declared the winner by an appeals board four months after the race, and Bobby Rahal’s winning 1986 March.
Along with these winning cars, will be everything from the Peugeot L45 which heralded a brief period of European domination either side of WWI to the fabulous roadsters of the 1950s, and the sensational gas turbine Lotus 56 to the very latest Dallara-Hondas.
Goodwood will be undertaking extensive testing to ensure that the nine Formula One teams expected to attend the 2011 Festival don’t bottom-out their F1 cars on the brick surface, along with the many other low-slung vehicles in action, including Le Mans winners and the very latest supercars. However, a number of competition motorcycle riders due to be tackling the Festival hillclimb are reported to be bricking it.
Tickets and further information aboutr the 2011 Festival of Speed and Moving Motor Show can be found on the Goodwood website www.goodwood.com/motor sport, or via the Ticket Hotline by telephoning: +44 (0)1243 755055.