Button and Wurz to drive at Goodwood

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The Honda Racing F1 Team’s Jenson Button and Alex Wurz have confirmed their appearance at this summer’s Goodwood Festival of Speed on 12 and 13 July. With a justifiable claim to be the world’s biggest and most diverse celebration of the history of motor sport and car culture, the Festival takes place in the picturesque grounds of Goodwood House near Chichester.

Motor racing first came to Goodwood in 1936 when the 9th Duke of Richmond held a private hill climb through the park and went on to open the famous Goodwood Motor circuit in 1948. His grandson, the Earl of March, brought motor sport back to Goodwood with the first Festival of Speed taking place in 1993.

Today, the Festival is a three-day event attracting 150,000 visitors over the weekend. Honda’s Test and Reserve Driver Alex Wurz will drive the team’s 2007 car, the RA107, up the famous Goodwood hillclimb on Saturday 12 July, with race driver Jenson Button taking over the wheel on Sunday 12 July.

The 1.16-mile course takes place on parkland roads in the heart of the grounds. The cars start near the gate lodge in the south of the park, racing along a tree-lined avenue and passing in front of Goodwood House, before climbing a steep and narrow estate road past flint walls and dense woodland groves, heading towards the finish line at the racecourse on top of the South Downs.

Joining Jenson and Alex at the Festival will be a host of Honda riders and drivers, along with a fantastic collection of Honda’s vintage and current racing machines. The 2008 Civic Type R BTCC will be driven by Tom Chilton with John McGuinness riding the 2007 Isle of Man TT winning Fireblade bike and Leon Haslam on the 2008 HM Plant Superstock Fireblade. Other famous names from Honda’s illustrious racing past include Jim Redman, Luigi Taveri, Mick Doohan and Tommy Robb.

Honda will also be holding the Question of Motor Sport Quiz, hosted by Vicki Butler Henderson, on the Honda stand at 2pm on Saturday and Sunday afternoon. With motor racing legends such as John Surtees and Mick Doohan scheduled to take part, it will be an event not to miss.

Making his ninth visit to Goodwood, Jenson Button commented; “The Festival of Speed is a fantastic event and an annual fixture in my summer calendar. It is always a pleasure to return to Goodwood. The weekend has a very relaxed atmosphere, and with the sun hopefully shining on us this year, it will be the perfect place to be for racing fans.

“Honda are once again sponsoring the Festival this year so it will be an action-packed day for my visit on the Sunday. As well as driving our Formula One car up the hill, I’m looking forward to the chance to catch up with the other Honda drivers who are attending and having a look at the historic racing cars and bikes.

“Coming straight after the British Grand Prix, it will be another chance for the British and international fans to have some fun, and I look forward to meeting many of them during the two events.”