HomeCar CultureCommentary‘Speed Kings’ is theme for 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed

‘Speed Kings’ is theme for 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed


“Motorsport has always been about pushing man and machine to the very limit, and this year, Goodwood will celebrate the people and machinery that set the benchmark or raised the bar,” the hosts of the annual Festival of Speed said in announcing the theme for the 2019 event — “Speed Kings — Motorsport’s Record Breakers.”

“This year marks 20 years since Nick Heidfeld took the outright record up the Goodwood Hill, covering the 1.16-mile course in 41.6 seconds at the wheel of a McLaren MP4/13,” the announcement added. 

“In 2018, the electric Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak car came close to taking the crown; 2019 could be the year we celebrate a new record holder.”

Goodwood’s focus will be on all areas of motorsports record breaking, “from the most consecutive wins, to most championships, fastest laps, most poles set by a manufacturer and many more,” the news release said.

“We are delighted with this year’s theme, as it offers an opportunity to celebrate the ultimate heroes of motorsport past, present and future,” added Will Kinsman, head of motorsports content for Goodwood. 

“The team are working hard to ensure the paddocks are bursting with the most talented drivers and riders alongside the most iconic road and race machines in the world. They are also delving into the more obscure corners of the motorsport world to ensure the Festival of Speed maintains and enhances its reputation as the greatest motorsport show on earth.”

Goodwood also said that away from its famed Hill, visitors will experience several changes in 2019, including the relocation of some events and the introduction of new ones.

The 2019 Festival of Speed, presented by Master Card, is scheduled for July 4-7 at the Goodwood Estate in Chichester, England.

Sonoma snares GTO for its Speed Festival

Goodwood, ‘Speed Kings’ is theme for 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed, ClassicCars.com Journal
Tom Price will race his Ferrari 250 GTO at Sonoma Speed Festival | Sonoma Raceway photos

Only 36 Ferrari 250 GTOs were made and they are the most valuable collector cars on the planet.

“If you owned… what would you do with it?” ask the hosts of the Sonoma Speed Festival in northern California. “Would you clean by hand weekly, only taking it out on sunny 78-degree days with no traffic or rain in the forecast… if you let it leave the garage in the first place?

“Or… would you race it all over the world?

“Luckily for everyone attending the 2019 inaugural Sonoma Speed Festival, Tom Price has entered his famous 1963 Ferrari GTO – widely considered the “Holy Grail” model – to race, May 31-June 2 at Sonoma Raceway.”

Without sharing all the details, organizers add that Price’s GTO is only the first two entered in the racing program… “and more could be on the way.”

“This car is the perfect blend of a GT car that you can drive to the track, race it and then drive it home again,” Price is quoted in the track’s news release. 

“There were 36 built and all 36 still exist. I know it’s the most collectible of any car in the world, but I don’t talk about its value. I’ve raced it more than 200 times and when you get into this car, you truly become one with the car. 

“I am very fortunate to have been able to buy it in 1983. I didn’t buy it because of the value, however, I bought it to drive it and have fun with it.”

Goodwood, ‘Speed Kings’ is theme for 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed, ClassicCars.com Journal
Ex-Niki Lauda F1 racer among those competing in Masters Historic Formula One USA
Goodwood, ‘Speed Kings’ is theme for 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed, ClassicCars.com Journal
Vintage Le Mans-style prototypes racing in 2018 in Germany

In addition to announcing Price’s entry, the Sonoma Speed Festival said its weekend program will include the Masters Historic Formula One USA and Masters Endurance Legends USA events, “the first time these two grids will appear at any event.”

The historic F1 group includes cars that raced between 1966 and 1985, “taking racers and fans back to an era in which Cosworth DFV power and a creative car designer could win races.”

The historic endurance series is open to cars that have raced from 1982 through 2016 at Le Mans, in the FIA Sports Car Championship, IMSA, Grand-Am, etc., and includes separate races for prototypes and GT cars.

Amelia Island salutes Gainesville drag strip 

Goodwood, ‘Speed Kings’ is theme for 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed, ClassicCars.com Journal
Aerial view of the Gainesville drag strip

As Florida’s Gainesville Raceway celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2019, it’s getting a special salute from the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, which notes that “you can attend The Amelia on March 10 and, the next day, drive to Ocala, visit the Don Garlits Museum and then go to the NHRA GaterNationals at Gainesville Raceway.

The concours announcement noted that it was at Gainesville that a drag racer first reached the 300 mph mark in a quarter-mile sprint — In March 1992 by Kenny Bernstein in the Budweiser King Top Fuel dragster. 

Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


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