Goodwood Estate, Chichester
Up The Hill - Several Times!
Many of us have experienced a moment in our lives when for just a few minutes everything seems to fall into place, but few racing drivers ever get to fulfil their dreams on track, especially over a period of three days when the surprises just keep coming!
However, had you been Marino Franchitti at last weekend's Goodwood Festival of Speed when the treasure chest fell open and all the riches of historic motor racing suddenly came tumbling out and presented themselves - in abundance - you might think you were dreaming! Marino is a true lover of historic motorsport, a real aficionado, so passion, raw emotion, fulfilment, and pure and utter excitement were all in free flow!
One by one Marino drove his dream cars up the famous Goodwood Hill, firstly there was the 1983 Le Mans winning Porsche 956 of Al Holbert/Hurley Haywood/Vern Schuppan which Marino drove at the weekend in conjunction with another of his heroes, Derek Bell; then came the iconic Porsche 718 F2/F1 car driven by such greats as Graham Hill, Stirling Moss, Dan Gurney and Jo Bonnier, and finally in the trio of Porsches, the 917/30 driven by racers such as Mark Donohue, Brian Redman and Jo Siffert.
Then right at the other end of the spectrum we were brought right up to date when Marino was given the opportunity to drive one of the UK's top TV and Radio Presenters, Chris Evans' Ferrari's up the Hill, in fact it was the Ferrari 599 GTO road car, the latest model in Ferrari's armoury launched by them at the Military Academy in Modena just last year. The BBC's annual "Children In Need" charity appeal had collected over £1.1 million from donors wanting to spend 3 or 4 days with Chris driving his magnificent collection of Ferrari's, so Marino was indeed priviliged to get the opportunity to drive one of them. And last, but by no means least, Marino drove the all new M600 Noble road car.
It must be difficult trying to encapsulate all the emotions of driving such an array of historic and modern race cars, however, Marino couldn't wait to make his feelings known, "My weekend at the Festival of Speed was even better than I could have ever imagined, driving the 956 that won the 1983 Le Mans 24 Hours was thrilling enough, but to end it driving my favourite car of all time, the Can Am Porsche 917/30, was just out of this world and left me speechless. Leaving my wife and mum speechless after runs up the hill in the Noble M600 was a lot of fun too! I want to thank all the car owners and mechanics who trusted me with their precious cars, especially Klaus Bischoff and the Porsche Museum. Also, a huge thank you to Lord March and his team for looking after me so well and putting on the most fun event of the year".
by: Marino Franchitti Racing