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  • Goodwood Festival of Speed: Silver anniversary with Silver Arrows.
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    Goodwood Festival of Speed: Silver anniversary with Silver Arrows.

    In mid-July 2018, the Goodwood Festival of Speed celebrated its 25th anniversary.

Every year a gigantic party in southern England.

The “world’s biggest automotive garden party” has reached a landmark: in mid-July 2018, the Goodwood Festival of Speed celebrated its 25th anniversary. In glorious weather, it was packed with many birthday guests. Naturally, Mercedes-Benz Classic, a regular invitee at the famous event on the country estate of the Duke of Richmond, joined in the celebrations and brought numerous racing vehicles and racing drivers to southern England.


Still in excellent racing form: Mercedes-Benz GT racing car CLK-LM from 1998.

Still in excellent racing form: Mercedes-Benz GT racing car CLK-LM from 1998.


“Record giant”: Mercedes-Benz T 80 from the 1930s. The open chassis made its world debut in Goodwood after almost 80 years.

“Record giant”: Mercedes-Benz T 80 from the 1930s. The open chassis made its world debut in Goodwood after almost 80 years.


The T 80 project lives on.

Malcolm Campbell, George Eyston, John Cobb: in the 1930s, these British drivers smashed the absolute speed record, recording 595.04 km/h over the flying kilometre. Aiming to be even faster, German racing driver Hans Stuck launched the T 80 project. Built by Mercedes-Benz, the record-breaking vehicle was capable of speeds of up to 650 km/h. However, the outbreak of the Second World War meant that the vehicle was never able to demonstrate its potential.


A playground for racing drivers.

2018, some 80 years later. Mercedes-Benz celebrated a world premiere where the absolute record was once set: in the motherland of the British Empire. In Goodwood, the brand presented the original T 80 chassis. It was on public display for the first time, the authentically reconstructed tubular frame illustrating the impressive dimensions of the “record giant”. The exhibit was the centre of attention on all days of the event. Among the guests: Hans-Joachim Stuck, son of the initiator of the record-breaking vehicle and himself a famous racing driver.


Every year, the Goodwood Festival of Speed is a playground for racing drivers. International celebrities from earlier years and the present are in evidence everywhere. Valtteri Bottas from Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport dropped in on the Sunday and raced up the hill in a Mercedes-Benz W 196 R from 1955. George Russell, his test driver colleague, did the same already on the Saturday. These would be present-day Silver Arrows pilots. Klaus Ludwig, Jochen Mass and Bernd Schneider were also there. They were responsible for great moments in earlier years and are also legends.


Image gallery.

Impressive: when the engines roar into life in the Goodwood paddock, those present are alerted to the tremendous power of the Silver Arrows.

Impressive: when the engines roar into life in the Goodwood paddock, those present are alerted to the tremendous power of the Silver Arrows.


High-speed silverware from Stuttgart.

And the rest of the high-speed silverware from Stuttgart for the “Silver Jubilee”? Mercedes-Benz Classic was present with many racing cars. W 25 from 1934, W 125 from 1937, W 154 and W 165 from 1939, 300 SLR (W 196 S) from 1955 and CLK-LM from 1998, plus the chassis of the W 125 record-breaking twelve-cylinder car from 1938, which, with its streamlined body, raised the record in that year to 437 km/h: These abbreviations and dates are a mouth-watering prospect for connoisseurs, for they know about the technology and the racing successes. But when the engines roar into life in the Goodwood paddock and the earth begins to quake, the acoustic spectacle alerts even non-brand connoisseurs to the tremendous power of these famous racing cars.


A feast for car lovers.

And that’s not all. Just a stone’s throw from the paddock, younger Formula One Silver Arrows are on view. As well as beautiful 1:4 scale models of the record-breaking cars from the 1930s, on which the Mercedes-Benz designers have worked.

One result of their labours: recently unveiled by the brand, the sculpture “Aesthetics Progressive Luxury”. It demonstrates how timeless aerodynamic styling can harmonise with modern design idiom. Who knows, perhaps some features will one day reappear on the bodies of new automobiles?

Goodwood is a paradise for car lovers. Wherever one looks, famous automobiles from all eras are on view – both stationary and also at full speed. The hill-climb circuit is 1.16 miles (1.87 kilometres) long; since 2005, there has also been the 2.5 kilometres long “Rally Stage”. The “Moving Motor Show” presents the latest vehicles in dynamic action. But impressive experiences are on offer not just on the ground, but also in the sky: the air shows during the Festival of Speed are also legendary – as are the ubiquitous interviews with racing drivers.

Happiest when at full speed: Mercedes-Benz W 154 Silver Arrow from 1939.

Happiest when at full speed: Mercedes-Benz W 154 Silver Arrow from 1939.


Into the future with Mercedes-Benz.

Mercedes-Benz is a regular guest at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. The brand has been represented at this renowned event from the beginning. At the same time, the Festival has constantly evolved over the 25 years of its existence – the Duke of Richmond’s vision is thus driving into the future. Next year will see a repeat. And famous Silver Arrows will once again be on view. “See you there!”