High-speed demonstrations of thunderous Formula 5000 single-seaters and modified-production Group 5 sports cars will complement the packed race program at the 2018 Goodwood Members Meeting, scheduled for March 17-18 at the Goodwood Motor Circuit in England.
If the previous demonstrations, comprising high-airbox, turbo-era and ground-effect F1 cars, 5-litre and Group C sports-prototypes, Group B rally monsters, Group A and Supertouring tin-tops and GT1 sports cars, are anything to go by, race goers are in for a treat when the 1970s V8 powersledges and turbo-wooshing endurance racers get an airing at the 76th Goodwood Members Meeting.
An assortment of Formula 5000 weaponry, including chassis from Begg, Chevron, Eagle, Lola, March, McLaren, McRae, Surtees, Talon and Trojan, will appear, the majority powered by Chevrolet’s 5-litre pushrod V8. Look out in particular for various machines from the series’ most successful two marques: Lola and its T142, T300, T330, T332 and T400 models, and McLaren with its M10A and M10B.
The sight and sound of these fat-tyred, high-airbox and winged beasts will evoke memories of the European F5000 Championship that ran between 1969 and 1975, backed at various points by Guards, Rothmans and ShellSport. For 1976, F1, F2 and Formula Atlantic cars joined in, so the series lost its F5000 tag.
Great battles were fought out at all the key UK circuits during F5000’s seven seasons, with overseas visits to Anderstorp, Hockenheim, Jyllandsringen, Koksijde, Monza, Mugello, Nivelles, Salzburgring, Zandvoort and Zolder giving the series its European identity. Champions Peter Gethin (1969/’70), Frank Gardner (’71), Gijs van Lennep (’72), Teddy Pilette (’73/’75) and Bob Evans (’74) scrapped for race victories with ex-Grand Prix drivers and/or future F1 names Guy Edwards, Howden Ganley, Mike Hailwood, David Hobbs, Alan Jones, David Purley, Brian Redman, Trevor Taylor and Reine Wisell.
For the second demonstration theme at the 2018 Goodwood Members Meeting, lovers of 1970s endurance racing will marvel at the appearance of numerous examples of the World Sportscar Championship’s Group 5 racers, highly modified production cars built to take advantage of a 1976 regulation change that welcomed them into the series.
The dominant car of the period was Porsche’s turbocharged flat-6 935, used by the factory Porsche squad from 1976 — winning on its debut at Mugello with Goodwood favourites Jacky Ickx and Jochen Mass — and from 1977 by numerous privateer teams. The distinctive, flat-nose 935 took dozens of victories in multiple categories and was still winning in its final season in the WSCC, taking victory in the 1981 Daytona 24 Hours and Sebring 12 Hours to add to a Le Mans 24 Hours 1-2-3 two years earlier.
The 76th Members Meeting will welcome a number of 935s — fingers crossed we’ll see Martini, Jägermeister, Vaillant and Liqui Moly examples — with other Group 5 exotica set to join in the fun. BMW’s ferocious 320i Turbo, Lancia’s Beta Montecarlo, Ferrari’s 512BB/LM and Ford’s outrageous Zakspeed Capri have been earmarked to attend.
Once again the demonstrations, which cater for cars outside Goodwood’s traditional 1966 cut-off, will add an exciting dimension to the Members’ Meeting next spring. Goodwood Members’ Meeting tickets are available now to Goodwood Road Racing Club Members and members of the Goodwood Fellowship.
[Source: Goodwood; photos: Autosports Marketing Assoc.]