Classic Car Program Goodwood Revival

Goodwood Revival

About the Goodwood Revival

The Goodwood Revival is widely recognized as the most unique historic racing festival in the world. Since 1998, every September the Revival, with all types of road-racing cars and motorcycles that would have participated in the original races between 1948 and 1966, takes place at Goodwood. The races are held at the original circuit on the Goodwood estate.

During World War II a large area of farmland on the southwestern edge of the Goodwood Estate was developed as the Royal Air Force Westhampnett fighter base, which became a center of historic aircraft action during the 1940 Battle of Britain. After the war, RAF Westhampnett was closed to operations and returned to the Goodwood Estate. The late Freddie March then led the way in persuading British government ministries to permit the disused aerodrome perimeter tracks to be adopted for motor racing, which led to the opening of the Goodwood Motor Circuit in 1948.

Over the next 18 years, the circuit became one of the most popular and prestigious in the world, before closing its doors to contemporary motor racing in 1966. Goodwood remained in continuous use as a test track. Exactly 50 years to the day since the opening of the Goodwood circuit, the present Earl of March sanctioned the first Goodwood Revival meeting in 1998.

For one weekend, every year in September, the golden era of Goodwood’s glorious past is recreated. Everything within the perimeter of the Motor Circuit is transported back in time to the 1940s, ’50s and ’60s – including the spectators, who are encouraged to dress in authentic period costume.

Since 2009 Credit Suisse has been a proud partner of the Goodwood Revival. In 2013 Credit Suisse committed to a seven-year title sponsorship of the iconic Race Control building, which is stationed in a prominent position overlooking the racetrack. The historic Race Control building underwent extensive restoration to combine premium contemporary interiors with the period features that are in keeping with the Goodwood Motor Circuit.

Credit Suisse Race Control History

Following the opening of the Goodwood Motor Circuit in 1948 it became evident that running a race meeting effectively required a Race Control building. Initially, Race Control operated from a double-decker bus and later from temporary scaffolding. The historic Race Control building, which is so proudly preserved today, is essentially a single-storey wartime ministry-style structure made of red brick, which may have been taken from a surplus War Department building kit early in the Motor Circuit’s history. Another structure would be added to the flat roof and continually modified during the race circuit’s major activities, until it was closed in 1966.

Race Control acted as a central office with a view of the race circuit’s starting grid and pit area, from which the presiding Clerk of the Course, his Royal Automobile Club presiding stewards, and other officials could effectively control the running of the race meeting.

Goodwood’s Race Control building became the hub of circuit activities from 1948 to 1966, and since the launch of the modern series of Goodwood Revival meetings in 1998 it has recaptured its former glory. Not only are the rules of racing observed and administered from it, the all-important timekeepers with their millisecond recording equipment and print-out facilities operate from within its historic frame.

All of the great constructors and trophy-winning superstar drivers have graced Race Control in their dealings with the Goodwood organizers, or for prize-giving ceremonies on its podium. These include five-times Grand Prix World Champion Juan Manuel Fangio, the first British World Champion Mike Hawthorn, plus other renowned names including Sir Stirling Moss, who won his very first serious circuit race here in the inaugural meeting of September 1948. Much of Great Britain’s motor racing history has been written in Race Control, amid much excitement, lots of tension and occasionally, of course, deep concern and (thankfully rare) grief.

Following Credit Suisse’s extension of its partnership with the Goodwood Revival in 2013 the Race Control building was carefully restored and re-opened by Sir Stirling Moss and Lord March.

Any motor racing circuit has at its heart its Race Control, and thanks to Credit Suisse the one at Goodwood survives today as one of the world’s longest serving, best preserved, and most iconic of them all.