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Goodwood marks 20 years of the McLaren F1 GTR

Gulf GTC Racing McLaren F1 GTR, which will appear at the 73rd Members’ Meeting.

Gulf GTC Racing McLaren F1 GTR, which will appear at the 73rd Members’ Meeting.

GOODWOOD will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the 1990s’ most iconic GT racer, the McLaren F1 GTR, with a huge on-track display of the 600bhp machines at the 73rd Members’ Meeting on March 21-22.

High-speed demonstrations at the famous Goodwood circuit will take place on both days, with 15 examples of the incredible F1 GTR already confirmed and more set to follow in both short and long-tail specification.

The F1 GTR, powered by a 6.1-litre V12 BMW engine, was created using a spare road-car chassis from the Gordon Murray-designed machine after customer Ray Bellm requested a competition version from McLaren boss Ron Dennis.

Unprecedented success followed, with a debut victory at the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1995 plus back-to-back crowns in the BPR Global Endurance Championship, further titles in Britain and Japan, and more international victories for the even faster, long-tail version.

The Harrods-liveried car in which Derek Bell and his son Justin finished third at Le Mans in ’95 will appear at Goodwood, as will long and short-tail versions carrying a variety of different colour schemes, including those from West, Gulf and FINA.

Indy 500 winner Kenny Brack will drive an ex-Parabolica Motorsport ‘long-tail’ machine at Goodwood while Richard Smith’s similar car – in which Brack was narrowly beaten to victory at last year’s Festival of Speed – will also appear.

Other significant cars include Nick Mason’s unraced development machine, which the former Pink Floyd drummer will drive, and the Gulf car in which Bellm and Maurizio Sandro Sala won BPR races in 1995, and which was subsequently taken to the ’96 British GT crown.

The British GT-winning long-tail ‘EMI’ car, an ex-Bigazzi machine raced by Jacques Laffite at Le Mans, and Ralf Schumacher’s race-winning Lark version from the 1996 Japanese GT series, have also been confirmed among a prestigious list of entries.

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