With the coming of winter, England has now once more reverted to its grey and miserable ‘mud island’ period. Looking back, it is hard to believe that I attended the glorious Goodwood – bathed in autumn sunshine – only a few months ago.

The annual Revival event at the Goodwood Circuit in Sussex is an enchanting step back in time to the romance and glamour of motor racing as it used to be in Goodwood’s heyday, from 1948 to 1966. The famous names of that era include legends like Juan Manuel Fangio, Stirling Moss and later Jim Clark and Graham Hill.

The circuit’s owner, the Earl of March, was behind the introduction of the regular Revival event which has now not only been firmly established in the international motorsport calendar, but has also become one of the biggest historic motorsport events and is the only one to be staged entirely in period dress. This period dress code means tweeds and trilbies for men, and furs and frocks for the ladies. Goodwood’s history as a wartime fighter base is also reflected in the way some people dress.

 

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Pieter de Lange
Pieter de Lange
I was born in Kroonstad next to the tranquil old Vals River and matriculated from the Hoërskool Kroonstad in the same era as writers such as Antjie Krog and Max du Preez. I studied at Tuks, played U19 rugby for them and boxed for the SA Universities team, after which I obtained Protea colours in the sport. In 1974 I started practising in London, was bitten by the Ferrari bug and returned to Pretoria after three years with a red Ferrari Boxer. In 1981 I married Mariaan and we moved to London for 18 months. I started with an MBL course in 1990 and enjoyed the research project the most, and to my surprise obtained the highest marks. I wrote a lot of articles about SA’s Olympic bid for the Sunday Times, Beeld, Business Day and Rapport. I also published my Olympic book The Games that Cities Play. In 1999 we moved lock, stock and barrel to London with our children René, Christiaan and Simon. I started a research project about South Africans living abroad and wrote a series of articles for The South African. We travelled the world with our children, from an icy St Petersburg to the blazing Red Sea in Egypt. We now have a beautiful grandson Arlo and live in Kent, where I still practise and regularly participate in park runs to keep the old carcass going.

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