The alarm duly went off at 5am on the morning of Sunday 22nd March, there aren't many events that would warrant such an early alarm call in my house, but the Members' Meeting is one that fits the bill. After we had such a good day last year at the first running of the meeting after many years of being dormant, we were looking forward to what Goodwood had to offer us this year. On a deceptively cold day we wrapped up warm, to explore the visual treats provided by Lord March.
The smallish crowd gathered waiting for the gates to open, as we were not alone in wanting to get there for the opening time.
You will notice the absence of people at this early hour, which is the reason for our early alarm call, as it isn't very often you see a deserted track at Goodwood.
Menacing looking Porsche resting in its garage, with its front peeking out into the light.
The mighty looking P1 GTR sunbathing. Looks fast standing still doesn't it?
Whilst the car runs on high octane fuel it seems that Rory and team run on high Caffeine fuel!
Lots of pre-event tinkering going on in the paddock.
Patination at its best, literally coated in history.
Little & Large.
If you wanted to stay out of the cold, the Great Hall was the place to get refuelled. I must say that Goodwood have the best Bacon and Egg rolls found at any venue we have ever been too!
After strolling round the deserted paddock and garages early in the morning, and taking onboard some of Lord March's cuisine it was time to get trackside and watch the racing commence. The first place we stopped was near the infamous chicane.
The chicane caught a few drivers out as can be seen here with No 21 heading off in totally the wrong direction.
The front runners attacked it at speed and popped a wheel in the air whist doing so.
You can't say that they weren't trying can you?
The chicane has the advantage for spectators that it tends to bunch the field up as can be seen here.
As the chicane attracted a largish crowd, we then headed off to find somewhere a bit quieter, and so after a quick ride on the trailer pulled by a tractor we got off at the far end of the circuit at Lavant corner where there was plenty of room to move. Next up it was the Sopwith Cup. If you thought that A40's like this one wouldn't be going very fast, then think again as Richard Meins in No 46 did a lap at an average speed in excess of 87mph!
Probably the fastest police car in Sussex at the weekend! Nice race number too!
The trusty Land Rover was out after each race towing in the cars that had hit trouble.
Next up was the high speed demonstration of the ferocious Group C cars.
The Martini stripes look good on just about any car don't they?
The noise from these machines was just immense.
Now that is what you call a proper rear wing!
Wouldn't be Group C without a big cat in the mix.
The Derek Bell Cup brought out the pocket rockets.
They may have been small in size but were still pretty rapid, as they don't carry a lot of weight around.
The Porsche's came out to play next for the John Aldington Trophy.
Close racing here as they hold on around the curve.
Next up was the demo runs of the High Airbox F1 cars. Has there ever been a better paint scheme in Formula 1 than the JPS one?
Now that is a striking crash hat design.
The only thing missing was the Murray Walker commentary!
You couldn't say that these lacked volume when they were running unlike todays F1 cars.
Looks a bit short and dumpty doesn't it!
The Earl Howe Trophy race was next up, and contained the oldest cars racing on the day. Just love the hand painted no 13, unlucky for some.
This MG may have been lacking in the cubic capacity department, but still showed a good turn of speed.
This Frazer-Nash was immaculately turned out, and surely kept the chain drive enthusiasts enthralled.
The sad sight of a forlorn broken down Bugatti.
Racing accidents happen and this looked an expensive one with the rear wheel hanging off at a strange angle.
The Tin Tops were out next for the Gerry Marshall trophy.
They came in all shapes and sizes, the mighty 7litre Camaro battling with the very rapid Mini 1275GT, real David and Golitah stuff.
The little Mini's seemed to attain the same speed around the corners as along the straights.
Rather sad looking figure of the retired driver surveying the continuing action.
Then we moved onto the McLaren F1 GTR demo. Best not to think about the value of the cars out there on track at this particular moment in time!
Striking colour scheme for a great looking car.
Looks good from any angle!
Then we had the Bruce McLaren Trophy, for the brutally fast big bangers.
The top runners were managing laps of over 105mph average, which is getting a shift on to say the least! Bit of a famous name on the back as well.
I may be wrong, but I am sure this isn't the racing line!
Next up was the Hawthorn Trophy, and the bright yellow Connaught was very eye catching.
Is there a better looking single seater than a 250F?
A bit of mid race nose reprofiling had obviously took place somewhere around the track.
Ferrari 500 leads the way round the bend.
At least the retiree could watch the action on the convenient large screen.
As the shadows lengthened it was time for the last race of the day.
The Salvadori Cup was simply filled with absolutely gorgeous machines such as this Devin.
D-Type looking at ease at serious speed.
Obviously rubbed someone up the wrong way!
As the sun set lower in the sky, it lit up the cars with its warm orange light.
Low slung cars in the low light, a perfect end to a packed sporting day.
Then it was time for us to head home, tired but happy. Once again it was a tremendous day out at Goodwood, with plenty of racing and a large selection of exquisite machinery to admire, spirited driving combined with a far smaller number of spectators than at the Revival made this a very special day for a motorsport fan like myself!