Electric VW breaks Heidfeld’s 20-year old Goodwood record
The Volkswagen ID.R electric prototype has broken the 20-year-old record set by a McLaren Formula 1 car for the fastest run up the Goodwood Festival of Speed hillclimb.
The ID.R – driven by Le Mans 24 Hours winner Romain Dumas – broke the electric record at the same event last year and was just 1.45 seconds short of usurping Heidfeld’s time set in the MP4/13 in 1999.
The ID.R has been "optimised for sprint" according to VW technical director Francois-Xavier Demaison and, as a result, it ran with fewer batteries to save weight and completed its hillclimb on soft compound Bridgestone tyres.
On Friday, Volkswagen's machine set a time of 41.18 seconds to beat the previous record of 41.6s previously held by Heidfield and McLaren.
“We improved a lot compared to last year, so that also is definitely positive and we worked a lot,” said Dumas. “It was definitely fun.
“It was a little bit stressful with the weather for the rest of the weekend so we tried to push today, but tomorrow I hope we can go a little bit quicker.”
Sven Smeets, Volkswagen's motorsport director told Motorsport.com it was "better" that the record run was completed on Friday, adding: "We didn’t expect to do it so early, but I also don’t wish it had happened on the last run [on Sunday] because [what] if something goes wrong?
"Now we can work tomorrow afternoon and Sunday afternoon a little bit for a different feeling. Still, apparently, there are some things we can improve to try and get under this 41 [second time]. We have to give ourselves a new target.
“This hillclimb is quite flat and not too bumpy so you can go more like a race car. The car is not so heavy as at Pikes Peak.”
Pushed on what time he thought the ID.R was now capable of, Dumas added: “Now I have no pressure, so that’s good. Goodwood is a tricky place, you never know what can happen.
“The track can be a little bit dirty with cars going in front of you and so on. Hopefully tomorrow I would like to go on a 40[s] would be nice. Which 40, low or high, I don’t know. We will try our best and we will see.”
The car has already broken records at Pikes Peak and at the Nurburgring before it arrived at Goodwood for a second attempt.
Dumas was able to celebrate his new record in person with Heidfeld at the top of hill, who had run before him in a Mahindra Formula E car.
Volkswagen guns for outright Goodwood record with electric ID.R
Pikes Peak bans motorbikes from taking part in 2020 hillclimb
The 2022 Goodwood Festival of Speed runs this weekend, with the first day of action from the famous hillclimb starting on Thursday.
Ken Block will race the twin-turbo AWD monster at Pikes Peak next month.
From Bigfoot to Le Mans-influenced racers, via Group B-derived leviathans, Pikes Peak has allowed some terrifying spectres to be unleashed. The latest in our Monsters of Motorsport series looks at the most outlandish machines to prove their worth on the famous hillclimb.
Bentley is preparing to run a Continental GT3 in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb with the goal to set a new record in the Time Attack 1 class.