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Published 03 July 2011
Dan Collins brought the 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed to a suitably stirring conclusion with an epic performance in the Top Ten Shootout finale. Times recorded in the previous batch were eclipsed by Andrew Willis in the wailing Matra MS670B in the opening run with a time of 53.18s but this was just the warm-up act. Minutes later, Andrew Smith recorded a time of 50.03s in his deceptively standard-looking Toyota Celica sprint car and neither Gary Ward’s Penske PC 19 or Paul Knapfield’s Brabham BT42 went faster. The weekend-long battle between GT star Michael Bartels’ Maserati MC12 and double British Rally Champion Jonny Milner’s self-built Toyota Celica hillclimber failed to take into consideration Collins’ determination aboard his Lotus 88B ‘twin chassis’ F1 car. This radical machine practised but never competed in a Grand Prix in period but Collins exploited the car perfectly to cut the timing beam at 48.52s.
Bartels was next to run in the Italian supercar but he could manage ‘only’ 49.09s. It was now all down to Milner whose wild-looking Toyota was the final car to run. He had been comfortably the fastest man all weekend but was convinced that he was taking Molecomb Corner too timidly. This time he attacked from the off, kicking up dust exiting the first corner, only to make a mess of Molecomb Corner with a grassy moment. Even so, he only narrowly failed to take the top spot with a still hugely respectable time of 48.99s. His efforts were rewarded with rapturous applause as the curtain descended on the 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed. See you in September for the Goodwood Revival!
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