The central sculpture at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed will celebrate the life and career of long-time Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone – the first time the giant display has been dedicated to an individual.
The Central Feature at the event is traditionally dedicated to a manufacturer celebrating a milestone anniversary. But the display for this year’s event, held on June 29-July 2, will honour Ecclestone by displaying five cars representing the five ‘ages’ of his career.
Ecclestone was ousted from his role as F1 boss by Liberty Media, the sport’s new owners, ahead of this season. He retains an honorary role as chairman emeritus.
“This is not so much a tribute, but rather a Goodwood celebration of a racer who has had such a huge influence on the sport that we all love,” said Festival founder Lord March. “Now that Bernie has stepped aside from running F1, he has agreed to spend the weekend at the Festival with many of the great names with whom he has worked with during a life dedicated to racing.
“It’s his first visit to the Festival and he will bring with him some great historic Grand Prix cars from his incredible collection.”
The sculpture will again be designed by Gerry Judah. The five ‘ages’ of Ecclestone it will chart are:
Driver: Ecclestone raced in single-seaters in the early 1950s, usually in 500cc Coopers. In 1958 he attempted to qualify for the Monaco Grand Prix, driving a Connaught.
Manager: After retiring from racing, Ecclestone guided the career of a number of drivers including Jochen Rindt, whose 1970 title-winning Lotus 72 will be featured.
Team owner: Ecclestone took control of the Brabham team in 1971. The team claimed two world titles during his tenure. The display will include the Brabham BT49 Nelson Piquet used to clinch the 1981 crown.
Impresario: Through his role heading the Formula One Constructors Association, Ecclestone took control of F1’s commercial rights in the 1970s, transforming the sport. This era will be represented by the Ferrari F2001 Michael Schumacher claimed the 2001 championship with.
Legend: The final car on the sculpture will be Nico Rosberg’s Mercedes-Benz W07. The German used it to claim the 2016 title, in what was Ecclestone’s final season in charge of the sport.
There will also be a ceremony for Ecclestone, attended by significant figures from F1 and his career, in front of Goodwood House at 1500hrs on Sunday July 2.