1. A Thrilling day out. It’s a whole day out or if you have the time to spare it’s a whole weekend out! With so much to see, hear, taste and smell there isn’t the remotest chance of boredom setting in.
2. Dressing up. You get to dress up and go out in public with a whole load of other people looking as silly as you do. Except that no-one actually looks silly; everyone looks elegant and fills you with a sense of nostalgia for a bygone era. Or perhaps lots of bygone eras because these days pretty much any decade pre 1980 is in attendance on the costume front, with a strong military theme presiding especially amongst the men. We did hear a rather amusing conversation between a hippy and his new found friend last year where the hippy was bemoaning the presence of more hippies after claiming he started the trend a few years earlier…there’s always one… The dressing up is just as much a part of the experience as the cars. Of course you can go in your normal clothes but you’ll probably be the only one!
3. The racing! Of course we must mention the cars and motorbikes - and I feel I must add here that this list in no particular order. You will feast your eyes on cars and motorbikes that would have raced at the circuit during its original period (1948 – 1966), the golden era of racing. Many a famous driver has taken part including Barry Sheene, Sir Stirling Moss, Martin Brundle and David Coulthard to name but a few. No modern vehicles are allowed within the circuit perimeter during the Revival.
4. Tattinger. Ok so it may not seem that alcohol and driving go together but if you’re staying nearby or have a designated driver then champagne and racing definitely go hand in hand. The Tattinger tent is situated near the pits, in full view of the cars preparing to enter the track so you’ll be able to sit and watch the goings on and enjoy the sound of roaring engines too, all with an elegant glass in hand – often an excellent selling point for the ladies.
5. Photography. With beautifully crafted sets and the racetrack full of classic cars not to mention the public in all their finery, there are plenty of photo opportunities. Goodwood are kind enough to leave some gorgeous cars dotted about the place especially for those posing moments – some even come with a selection of models!
6. The aeroplanes. If you venture to the far side of the track to the outer pits and beyond you’ll find a display of classic aeroplanes to get up close and personal with. There are also air displays during the show (another plus for a long lens inclined photographer).
7. ‘Over the Road’ If you stay into the evening after the racing has finished, the ‘over the road’ area comes into its own. You will find the fairground, more shops, displays of cars and bikes, the wall of death, a roller disco (yes you heard correctly), food and the Doom Bar (see no. 8). Over the Road stays open well into the evening.
8. The Doom Bar. This is the place where everyone congregates when everything else has finished on the racetrack. Not only will you find a selection of Doom beers, wine, champagne and soft drinks but also it’s a wonderfully rustic setting with straw bales to sit on and live music playing some classic dance numbers from the 50s and 60s.
9. The High Street. As you go over the bridge you find yourself in amongst tents selling all sorts of fabulous items from car related products to furs and fancy dress. You can shop in an old fashioned Tescos (yes really) and even get your hair done in the classic style of the era. This is where you can pick up unique memorabilia.
10. The Bonhams Auction. Situated ‘Over the Road’, the Bonhams auction always displays some seriously impressive cars. You must buy a catalogue to enter but that’s to be expected and it’s such a well put together book that it’s one for the coffee table to flick through time and again anyway.
I could go on but I hope you’re sold on the idea by now…get your tickets early as they tend to sell out fast!