GOODWOOD FESTIVAL OF SPEED, 13 JULY 2008

FESTIVAL OF SPEED

Diffey squeezes into the Festival of Greed at the last minute.

The Diary of Simon Diffey – Aged 14 ½ !


 Arrive Friday at 4.30pm, find the Surtees next to Judy Lyons Penthouse Hesketh and am told to get signed on as there is a practice run at 5.30pm.  John will drive the De Tomaso and I’m in the Surtees TS9B. No time to think, so jumped in using Derek Bells seat which has a ridge up the middle and most uncomfortable so I’m assuming he has no back bone. Warm up the engine and we are off. I frightened myself senseless and didn’t break the minute mark.

On Saturday I tried harder, but despite 115mph through the trap outside the house which is flat in 2nd just before the up shift through the bridge I could only do a 57.s.  However a chap did come up to me and congratulate me on being wonderful surgeon and informed me that his exhaust pipe was now functioning properly!

On Sunday, and in contrast to Lord Laidlaw, I exercise the Monson tradition of sharing the love, by strapping young ladies in for engine warm up.  Indeed one who got out shaking confirmed that with 500bhp it was one hell of a vibrator!  On a more sensible note and for pushing down to collecting we used keen small boys to steer and made their hours of queuing to the event worthwhile.

Well next was the party and you would kill me if I didn’t tell you. I sat next to Peter Dunn, because his wife took one look at me and said the seat next to her was taken! I did say ”do you know who I am, I’m Prof Monson - but then again even when I operate on people they think I’m that dwarf Diffey!” She then said “please move away.”

And so to the entertainment. Outside in the garden was a stage and we all expected another dull Circ de Soleil style moment. His Lordship being a petrol head was having none of it - enter dancing girls in overalls to drum and bass who rapidly strip down and slide up and down chrome poles with 20 feet of fire shooting out the top. Then Dougie Lampkin jumps his trials bike out of nowhere to centre stage performing impossible tricks in a very tight spot before riding up the scaffolding and out into the night.  We all applaud thinking its all over only for the drummers of the Who, Pink Floyd and Queen to appear out of the stage floor to put on a one off drum medley to a fire work display that would put the 4th of July to shame.

With our senses in overdrive we thronged to the dance hall where Katie Tunstall put on a killer set followed by a disco heaven from Capital Radio. Where else but Goodwood?

As Frank Lyons and I put the cars away on Sunday, we both stopped and looked at each other.  We didn’t need to say anything, we knew we had had the time of our lives and we knew we were going to miss the Prof.  We nodded, shut the door and hit the M25.

 

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