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Your Ultimate Guide To The Goodwood Festival Of Speed 2024

Matt Crisp June 21, 2024

The Goodwood Festival of Speed takes place every year in the beautiful parkland surrounding Goodwood House in West Sussex. This year the event runs from 11-14 July, and it’s possible to buy family tickets or coach hire packages for one or multiple days, with roving grandstand access to all 13 public grandstands. 

The festival features a range of historic and modern motorsports vehicles taking part in various events throughout the weekend. This year, the theme is ‘Horseless to Hybrid – Revolutions in Power’, and it is all about the evolution of the motor industry, from the first self-propelled vehicle to the current shift towards sustainable transport. 

The festival has a history of showcasing new and innovative technologies since its inception in 1993. Here’s a look back at the origins of the event, and how it has evolved into a key attraction for motoring enthusiasts, racing fans, celebrities and anyone interested in the rich automotive history of the UK and beyond.

The beginning of the festival

The festival was founded in 1993 by the 11th Duke of Richmond, Charles Gordon-Lennox, who is the owner of the Goodwood Estate. His vision was to bring motor racing back to the Goodwood Circuit, which was active from 1948 to 1966. However, he did not have permission to do this, so he moved the event to the grounds of his estate.

The first festival exceeded expectations by attracting 25,000 visitors to witness a display of vintage motor vehicles. This paved the way for an annual event, and over the next few years it expanded into a three-day event, spanning the weekend. 

Key features of the event

The Hillclimb

The Hillclimb is the central attraction of the festival. It consists of a challenging 1.16 mile course as vehicles tackle steep inclines and sharp turns on the journey from the bottom of Goodwood Hill to the top. The route has been completed by a range of vehicles from Formula One cars driven by top racing drivers, to vintage motors. 

Supercar Paddock

The Supercar Paddock was first introduced in 2000 to showcase road-going supercars. It’s an opportunity for specialty car manufacturers to introduce the latest models and concept models to the general public. Some cars also take part in an optional timed run to allow drivers to put them through their paces and show off their scope.

Forest Rally Stage

The Forest Rally Stage was introduced in 2005 to add an exciting off-road element to the festival. It consists of a demonstration area for the rally cars at the top of the hill, and the cars start a challenging forest route at timed intervals. 

Future Lab

The Future Lab was introduced in 2017, and is the science and technology pavilion of the festival. It features innovative and prototype vehicles that may shape the future of motoring, such as autonomous vehicles and even flying cars.

This year, the future lab will take centre stage as the festival looks ahead to tomorrow’s motor vehicles. As environmental concerns and sustainable fuel sources become a high priority for car manufacturers, the emphasis will be on technological advancements in electric and hybrid vehicle technologies, and sustainable fuels. 

The sister event, 2024 Goodwood Revival, will feature a key moment as the Motor Circuit hosts the whole weekend of historic racing using sustainable fuels. 

Planning your day at Goodwood

The above are just a few of the key highlights of the event; there are many more features and attractions such as the Wacky Races, RAF flypasts, and various other family entertainments. 


There’s a diverse range of hospitality options available, from fine dining in the ballroom to mobile snack bars. It’s possible to select your hospitality options with your ticket purchase if you want to make the weekend a special social event.

Family area

Goodwood is very much a day out for all the family, with a kid’s activity area with tot car racing, face painting, Big Cat build, and a chance to meet your racing heroes for a signature and a selfie. Children under 12 are admitted free of charge

Action sports

There’s a motocross and BMX stunt arena where you can watch daredevil displays by some of the world’s most talented and famous riders, as they tackle jumps, ramps, flips and tricks.