I wanted to do something for my Father in Laws Birthday, and to thank him (from Alex) for a great day out at a Goodwood Breakfast Club. As you may all know, little Alex (3yrs old) knows his cars…. and I mean REALLY knows his cars…. Ferraris, Jaguars, Pagini, Lamborghini…… Gumperts, Bently, Astons etc…. he has an uncanny ability at recognition! So, as a treat, and to see Ian (FiL) we went to a Goodwood Breakfast Club (PICS). Admittedly my father in Law was working (as he is Senior Track Steward & Site Supervisor at the Goodwood Circuit), but he managed to share some time (and bacon sarnies) with us!
What did I do then….. well….
I rate the Mac pretty highly – It’s an easy machine to use (far easier than a PC…. and yet performs much better).
My Macbook came with a program called “Garage Band” which is a music writing/edit suite. It’s fantastic! It allows me to take any of my music and turn it into ring tones (with a sample length does not breach copyright).
It has inbuilt samples along with a huge array of instruments for original compositions… you can even plug in your own real instruments and vocals…… but the first thing I played with was the samples. They can be cut, re-arranged and mixed to make some pretty good stuff…. I’ve had a few people convinced it was a real recording, and not some computerised mix up I had produced!
Anyway… Here’s the first track I wrote – mixing and cutting/splicing the Apple supplied samples. To make it a bit more interesting, I made it into a photo slide show of Alex at Goodwood for my Father in Laws birthday. Happy Birthday!
There are many regular events at Goodwood… not just the annual Revival or Festival of Speed. There are club days, race days, fly ins, all sorts… and one of those days that occurs regularly throughout the year is the Breakfast Club… a Sunday morning jam packed with high end sports cars and supercars…
As I still had a hire car due to the Fiesta issue (See here) I decided to take Alex down to Goodwood to see his Granddad (My Father in law) at work on the race circuit.
Luckily it tied in with one of The Breakfast Club events…
As we drove closer our little Fiesta hire car was surrounded by top marque sports cars. Alex was getting giddy with excitement as he called out all of the names!
We parked up at Granddads house and then walked up to the track. I saw from a distance what I thought was a Jaguar XJ220 in Rothmans colours. Alex meanwhile had spotted a Pagini Zonda which I could not see…. until we got a lot closer to the Rothmans Jaguar…. which wasn’t a Rothmans Jaguar… it was the Zonda – It was the paint scheme that threw me, but not Alex!
All photo’s can be seen HERE or just click on the photo’s:
Tuned Pagini Zonda... as if it needed it!
After the Pagini Zonda the cars kept rolling in… and each one was named correctly by the 3yr old petrol head! He was uncanny – and he was surprising some others that over heard him!
Ferrari and Stingray
Almost embarrassing were the two times when Alex corrected some adults as to what certain cars were! Luckily being 3 he can get away with it by being cute!
Lord March showed up in… not his superb Aston Martin Vantage, but his “Rat Rod”…. A car a little bit different to the super sleek supercar from Alex’s birthday!
Lord March's Rat Rod
After walking around the cars we caught up with Granddad Ian in his office…the hub of the race circuit… The pit lane office… Alex had a whale of a time watching all the cars roll by with me and his Granddad. He was having such a great day!
It looked like we had turned up at just the right time, as Bacon Rolls showed up, so we ate a snack in the pit office – Granddad shared his bacon roll with Alex, and Alex shared his sausages with Granddad!
Alex looking at the Alonso and Granddad photo
After a while we let Granddad get on with his work. We went off to look at yet more cars. Alex surprised me again when he pointed out a GT40 and looked into the engine bay intently…. ran his hands over a few parts and then looked at me and said “V8 daddy…. V8 Ford….”
V8 Daddy... V8 Ford
Alex may have liked the V8 Ford, but I was taken aback by the beauty of this Jaguar E-Type (pointed out, once more, by Alex)… The V12 in this gorgeous machine looked like new – even the little petrol head said it was “Pretty engine” … he wasn’t wrong… he has a good eye!
V12 beats V8...
Back in the pit land Graddad got Alex a ride around the circuit on the Tractor – bus that tours the circuit. Once more I was told about the cars tht Alex could see – and in between naming cars he was saying “Thank you Daddy.. Thank you Granddad..” Such a sweet well behaved grease monkey!
Touring the Circuit
At the end of the afternoon Alex was tired out. He slept well in the car all the way home – very happy and content. He really loves seeing his Granddad – and the cars just add to that. He never says “We are going to see race cars and Granddad” – it’s always “We’re going to see Granddad! Granddad and cars!”
It’s times like these that the hard times we are going through are made fully worthwhile. I may be driving my wife’s purple 1997 Ford Fiesta, I may never own a sports car, but maybe I can get Alex on the path to a better future.
I wonder what he dreamed about on the way home… he had a huge smile on his face…. a Mini in one hand and a Lamborghini in the other….and his toy puppy on his lap……
Alfa Romeo 8C
Countach - 80's Italian Muscle
There were even ballon flights, though we didn't go on one
Alex gets very excited when he see’s cars that he really likes. He breaks into squeals and shouts of joy, but today’s trip out to Brooklands Museum in Weybridge was a real eye opener….
The first building we entered had F1 cars in it… as Alex stepped into the room he just stopped dead… not a sound… he was overwhelmed!!!
He then started naming the cars!
Now I’ve mentioned before about his car knowledge, but today he surpassed himself as we walked around the vintage motors. We walked into one room with some really old cars in, and straight away he was naming them… Vauxhalls, Morgans, MG’s…. and then in the corner we saw a really old car….. and over Alex went and happily told me it was a Bugatti!!!
In yet another room he told me about the red 1930’s Maserati and a very early 1900 and something Peugeot… one of those that look like an old stage coach! He said it was a Peugeot granny car….
In one showroom there was a staged room belonging to a car designer. It was full of small models on the window ledge… which Alex started naming… He’s less than a month from his 3rd Birthday, so hearing him name vintage race cars just seemed so odd! He’s very good at it!
Alex scares people by naming vintage race car models...
Besides the cars there are lots of aircraft at the museum – mostly those with some link to Vickers or Brooklands. They have one of the retired Concorde airliners there – an awesome sight – but for me it was overshadowed by the little known TSR2 nose section. Don’t get me started on that one… politics, politics and more politics… Grrrrrrr
A lot of the exhibits were things that my Dad had been heavily involved in – so I felt a warm nostalgia as I recollected the tales people told me of what he had achieved. He used to work alongside famous test pilots and engineers – notable names such as Bill Bedford and Barnes Wallace (Bouncing Bomb fame).
TRS2 fwd fuselage under Concorde nose
Vickers Wellington bomber, Hawker Hurricane, Harriers and Kestrels… Bouncing bombs and Tall Boys… lots of history… All of which Alex really enjoyed…. but this is Brooklands, and the home of a motor racing circuit that is 102 years old… or what is left of it….
Alex under the huge nose of the Valiant V-Bomber in the Stratosphere Chamber - out of sight is the 100 ton chamber door!
The circuit saw the fastest cars of the day – record breakers and racers – and a lot of them are on display. The steeply banked track is close to impossible to walk up – and very scary to try and climb down again as it is near vertical at the top!
So happy I thought the corners of his smile would meet up at the back of his head...
I always wondered what it would be like to go around the banked track, and today I had to wonder no more… They had a range of vintage and vintage style cars … and a Corvette … taking passengers up the (crazily steep) Hill Climb and hard right onto a woodland surrounded dirt track that swooped down and joined onto some of the remaining original circuit… tha part with the steep banking….
As we swept down the woodland road onto the race track our driver gunned the engine and took us up the steeply banked track – I say steeply banked track, but I think “wall” is a better description!
Alex loved it so much (squealing and grinning with joy) that we had to go around twice! It really was fantastic! The photo’s don’t do the angles justice!
The Hill Climb - We rocketed up this!
Getting ready to climb the bank.... It did not feel natural to be going so fast at such an angle of sideways tilt!
A final mention goes to this old fire engine. I’ve just had my 36th birthday… but I don’t feel so old… until I see an engine that I used to drive as part of my job!!!
I used to be part of the Dan-Air (Lasham) airfield fire crew. We had old RAF and Airport fire vehicles, and this very engine was one that I used to drive! How old does it make you feel to see something you actually used sitting there in a museum!