Sebastian Vettel in his ex-Nigel Mansell Williams FW14B at the 2023 Festival of Speed. Ph. by Drew Gibson.

Goodwood announces 2024 dates for Festival of Speed, and ticket rollover for those who missed out this year

Saturday tickets will be in short supply

Are you one of the many thousands who lost out on going to the Goodwood Festival of Speed this year? Strong winds, which would have made the many high-reaching structures at the event including one which dangled priceless historic Porsches from a sculpture by Jerry Judah, too dangerous meant that the Saturday events at this year’s Festival were cancelled. It’s the first time in Goodwood’s 30-year petrolhead history that the Festival has lost a day to the weather.

However, there’s good news this morning for anyone who did have a Saturday ticket for this year — Goodwood has announced its 2024 Festival of Speed dates, and has said that anyone who wishes to roll their tickets over for next year can do so. Indeed the Festival’s organisers have said that all of the Saturday attendees for 2023 have already been contacted, and the majority have decided to convert their 2023 ticket into 2024 entry.

The Festival of Speed 2023. Ph. by Dominic James.

That’s good news for them, but slightly less good news for the rest of us, as it means that tickets for the Saturday of the 2024 Festival of Speed are now already said to be in short supply.

2024 Festival of Speed ticket on-sale dates

The 2024 Festival of Speed will take place from Thursday the 11th to Sunday the 14th of July next year, but don’t rush to buy a ticket just yet as they’re not on sale. In fact, tickets for the 2024 event will be rolled out in stages, with members of the Goodwood Road Racing Club (which you can join here) getting a chance to buy tickets from the October 28 this year.

Then, on October 30, the tickets will be opened out to Goodwood Road Racing Club Fellows. You can pay to be a Fellow of the Club, costing £79 per annum, and you have to be a Fellow before you can become a full member. If you’re a Fellow, you also get a ten per cent discount on tickets for up to two passes for the Festival of Speed or the Revival.

Finally, on November 6, 2024 Festival of Speed tickets will go on sale to the general public. As in previous years, children ages 12 and under go free and a ‘Young Person’ ticket will be available for those aged between 13 and 21. In previous years, adult day tickets have started from £54.

Neither cars nor stars nor overall theme for the 2024 Festival have yet been announced, but in 2023 the focus was on celebrating 30 years of the event, which started  in 1993. Back then, the crowds were small, while the cars — even the rarest ones — were left almost unattended. There were few marquees, and certainly none of the multi-level motor show stands which the major (and minor) car makers now build to display their wares.

Epic 2023 edition despite disappointment

This year, in spite of the Saturday disappointment, the Festival still managed to shine amid the rain and the wind. McLaren’s incredible single-seat, one-of-25 Solus GT set the fastest time up the hillclimb on the Sunday, but was out-done for sheer drama by legendary stunt driver Travis Pastrana and his astonishing 860hp Subaru ‘Hoonigan’ estate.

McLaren Solus GT

The stars of motor racing turned out in force, as is ever the case with Goodwood. Ferrari’s Le Mans 24 Hours winners, James Calado, Antonio Giovinazzi and Miguel Molina, were feted from the balcony of Goodwood House — an honour previously accorded to the likes of Nigel Mansell and Valentino Rossi — while four-times Formula One world champion Sebastian Vettel showed up with two legendary 1990s F1 cars. Those were the 1993 McLaren-Ford MP4/8 (Ayrton Senna’s last McLaren) and the 1992 Williams-Renault FW14B, as driven to the title by Nigel Mansell. Vettel actually owns both cars, and was demonstrating them using carbon-neutral renewable fuel, while also warning that amid the growing climate crisis, Formula One could soon find itself banned from some countries unless it cleans up its act.

Elsewhere, Porsche was the star marque, celebrating its 75th anniversary, as was Goodwood’s motorsport connection, as the nearby Goodwood race track — using the perimeter road of the former RAF Westhampnett fighter airfield — opened its doors in 1948, thanks to the efforts of Frederick Gordon-Lennox, ninth Duke of Richmond and grandfather of the current car-mad Duke who runs the Festival.

Other stars of this year’s event included MG’s wild-looking EX4 electric hot hatch tribute to the classic MG Metro 6R4 rally car; Ineo’s ‘Quartermaster’ pickup version of the Grenadier off-roader; Jenson Button smoking the tyres of his Le Mans racer, Chevrolet Camaro NASCAR; the debut of Ferrari’s one-off KC23 track-day car and Mick Schumacher making a tear-jerking run up the hill in the 2011 Mercedes W02 Grand Prix car, as formerly raced by his legendary father, Michael.

Will 2024’s Festival be as spectacular? Goodwood has a reputation for always exceeding itself. If only the weather, next July, can be persuaded to play along.

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