I never got around to booking tickets for Silverstone Classic but my mate Kirk kindly offered me a spare entry ticket and a lift into the Porsche Club GB infield parking in his lovely Pastel Blue 2.2L 911S.
The offer of spare tickets from Steve Winter at Jaz Porsche overcame any remaining indecision over whether to get up to Donington this year.
Opting to go on Sunday meant I could watch Steve and his co-driver Rob Williams compete in the GT & Sports Car Cup for Pre-’66 GT & Pre-’63 Sportscars.
It was also a good opportunity to meet up with old friends Ken, James & Kirk.
For the Endurance Racing Experience to really work – fans have to share the endurance challenge in some way in order to legitimately bask in the triumph of their achievement alongside that of their driving heroes.
At Le Mans – the fans challenge is staying awake for as much of the 24 hour race as possible. There’s also the equally difficult challenge of remaining just sober enough to work out which car whanged past at well over 100 decibels. NB: Working out relative positions of cars in a 24 hour race is a pointless task and should not be attempted for fear of confusion.
At Silverstone in April – the challenge is entirely thermal.
With so many cars to inspect at close quarters it’s really difficult not to be drawn to different sections of the paddock and miss key races.
In retrospect – I should have spent two days at Goodwood not just the one long day to cover everything. There’s always next year!
Upon reflection – setting off at 05:30 to be at Goodwood as the gates opened at 07:30 was a bit mad but it did give me time look at some wonderful cars in the paddock before it got too crowded and before the track action commenced.
Sunday’s Goodwood 75th MM programme provided a great day of fast and furious racing in thankfully dry if bloody cold conditions.
This Classic Car Show continues to expand in terms of the volume and variety of cars on show and in terms of the size of the Grand Avenue where cars are driven up and down the cavernous main hall to improve the visual and aural experience for the audience.
I knew it was my lucky day when I received a call from the Porsche Club GB office to offer me a last minute place for the “Evening with Jacky Ickx” event they had organised at Porsche Centre East London.
Upon arrival – I was chatting with Ed Pike (co-organiser with other half Nick of of PCGB London Region) and another club member over a glass of wine when a dapper gentleman wandered over and introduced himself to us with – “Hello – I’m Jacky”, before shaking each of us by the hand.
It was none other than Belgian motor racing legend – Jacky Ickx!
Darwinian principles can be applied as much to automotive design and manufacturing as they have been to evolutionary biology. “Survival of the fittest” has been the recipe of enduring success for a number of car marques but it has also seen the extinction of many more.
From the very first cars – certain marques have driven down developmental cul-de-sacs whilst others have, through inspired progressive improvement, survived to the present day.
As one of the most successful surviving marques – it’s interesting to analyse some of the factors and earlier designs that assured Porsche’s initial establishment, success and ultimate longevity as a manufacturer of road and race cars.
Normally I go down to Hyde Park to see the veteran cars receive last minute preparation before setting off as dawn breaks but this year I had a bit of a lie-in.
Hopping on the first tube – I headed for Leicester Square and then took a brisk walk down Charing Cross Road and across Trafalgar Square to the Mall to watch the cars turn onto Horse Guards Road en-route for Brighton via Parliament Square and Westminster Bridge.
There was a serious chill in the air but the sun shone brightly and with hardly any other people around it was a great vantage point to see the cars in action.