[b]FORD CELEBRATES CLASSIC LE MANS WIN AT GOODWOOD 2006
Full programme of competition car entries and logistics support for 2006 Festival
GOODWOOD, UK, 7-9 July, 2006 – Ford Motor Company's sponsorship of the Goodwood Festival of Speed continues this year with a major programme of support to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the first Ford GT40 victory at Le Mans.
Ford has entered several cars on the historic hillclimb. In the Supercar category, a Ford GT will be piloted by several selected drivers including Roelant de Waard, Ford of Britain's Chairman and Managing Director, and Jost Capito, Director of Ford Team RS.
De Waard, an enthusiastic amateur racing driver, said: "This is my first opportunity to attend the Goodwood Festival of Speed, which has always been a very important event for Ford, and one in which the company plays a leading role. The chance to drive the new GT up the hill, almost exactly 40 years after the original GT40 achieved that legendary Le Mans victory, is extremely exciting."
[b]Tribute to 1966 Ford 1-2-3 at Le Mans[/b]
An original GT40, reconfigured by Ford to represent the 1966 Le Mans-winning machine, is also entered. It has been prepared as a tribute to the drivers and teams that took the GT40 to four successive Le Mans victories, and will be seen in its black and silver livery for the first time at the Festival. It was in 1996 that Ford scored its historic 1-2-3 victory with the three GT40s crossing the finishing line in formation at the end of the race.
Two of the victorious drivers will be at the Festival to take it up the hill - Dan Gurney, whose victory came in 1967 when he partnered AJ Foyt in a Mk. IV version, and Jackie Oliver, who partnered Jacky Ickx for the GT40's fourth consecutive win in 1969.
[b]Marcus Grönholm and the Ford Focus RS WRC[/b]
Goodwood's Forest Rally Stage has been substantially revised this year. Ford will be represented by a 2006 World Rally Championship Focus for Marcus Grönholm, who has scored three WRC victories in the Focus this year, and his team-mate Mikko Hirvonen. The Ford Focus RS WRC will also be driven on the Goodwood hillclimb.
Puma Motorsport, the Ford team's racewear supplier, has generously donated five pairs of Puma overalls to be provided for lucky passengers in the Focus at Goodwood. During the Festival the overalls will be signed by as many rallying and racing stars as possible and auctioned in aid of the Richard Burns Foundation, formed to raise money for and awareness of the fight against illness and injury, particularly in the areas of cancer and road injury.
As usual, there will be many privately entered Ford and Ford-powered competition cars at the Festival, including Roush Technologies' 1999 Trans-Am Mustang, a 1981 Zakspeed Capri, an RS 200, Escort RS 1600 & 1800, a Sierra Cosworth - even a Ford Transit! In the Grand Prix classes, Ford-Cosworth engines will power more cars than engines from any other manufacturer.
[b]Ford Transit in support and on show[/b]
As in previous years, Ford is supplying the Festival organisers with a large number of Transit and Ranger vehicles for use by marshals and officials around the Festival site. A new long wheelbase Transit will also be provided for a special feature in the highly popular Junior Festival of Speed. Over the weekend, a team of skilled graffiti artists from the Brighton-based "Rare Kind" company will decorate the Transit with iconic images from the Festival - the cars, the stars, the bridges, Goodwood House, the entertainment, and so on.
The Earl of March, on whose Goodwood Estate the Festival of Speed takes place each year, said: "Our work in putting on the Festival is made easier by the assistance of our sponsors who provide logistical support. Ford has always been particularly helpful with the loan of Transit Minibuses, Rangers, and four-wheel drive vehicles. I'm delighted that this year they are also providing a brand new Transit as a 'canvas' for the imaginative work of the Rare Kind artists - I'm sure the results will be fascinating and spectacular!"