Blenheim wins at Goodwood

The 10th Freddie March Spirit of Aviation concours d’elegance for pre-1966 aircraft was staged at the Goodwood Revival historic race meeting at the former RAF Westhampnett near Chichester over the weekend of 8-10 September. This year, aircraft that had filled the top three positions in previous competitions were invited back, providing an eclectic mix of civil and military types.

The judges — including architectural critic and writer Jonathan Glancey and fashion model turned TV presenter Jodie Kidd — voted the Aircraft Restoration Companyoperated Bristol Blenheim IF ‘L6739’/G-BPIV to the top spot, the Duxford-based aircraft having also won on its previous appearance in 2015. In second place was the Old Flying Machine Company’s Spitfire IX MH434, which made a memorable low-level pass down Goodwood’s finishing straight in the hands of the late Ray Hanna during the press day for the first Revival back in 1998. Third was yet another Cambridgeshire-based aircraft, in the shape of Nigel Pickard’s Spartan Executive NC17633, which shares a hangar at Little Gransden with Nigel’s second Spartan, NC17615 (see January 2010 Aeroplane).

Making its first non-Duxford UK appearance at Goodwood was the Salzburg-based Flying Bulls’ Lockheed P-38L Lightning, N25Y, which stole the show in the flying display in the hands of Raimund Riedmann.

Colin Swann and John ‘Smudge’ Smith from the Aircraft Restoration Company, with the winners’ laurels draped around the propeller of Blenheim IF ‘L6739’/G-BPIV at Goodwood on 10 September.