For the first time ever, the central feature and sculpture at the Goodwood Festival of Speed is set to honour an individual rather than a marque.
This year’s giant Gerry Judah-designed sculpture will pay homage to Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone, who for the past 40 years has transformed Formula One into a multi-billion dollar enterprise.
“This is not so much a tribute, but rather a Goodwood celebration of a racer who has had such a huge influence on the sport we all love,” said Lord March. “It’s wonderful that Bernie has agreed to spend the weekend at the Festival with many of the great names with whom he has worked during a life dedicated to racing. I’m also delighted that he will bring with him some great historic Grand Prix cars from his incredible collection.”
All eyes are sure to be fixed on the towering sculpture, which this year will feature five vehicles representing different chapters in Ecclestone’s life, as driver, manager, team owner, impresario and legend of the sport.
Ecclestone began racing both motorcycles and cars in the 1940s and 1950s, entering the Monaco Grand Prix in 1958 in a Connaught. He soon moved into the world of management, looking after Stuart Lewis-Evans and 1970 World Champion Jochen Rindt before buying the Brabham F1 team in 1971. He formed a successful partnership with designer Gordon Murray along with some of the most successful drivers of the era, including Nelson Piquet, who won two World Championships for the team. Just three years later he took control of the F1 Constructors’ Association, guiding the series for the next three decades and turning it into a multi-billion dollar business.