Goodwood Festival of Speed 2017 – Thursday

Billed as the greatest motoring garden party on Earth, Goodwood Festival of Speed promoted Thursday as the initial opening day harder this year than any previous year with promises of more hill climb action, smaller crowds and paddocks full of cars on display. I have been along on a Thursday for several years now, possibly even since Thursday opening was first introduced and those earlier years concentrated on the moving motor show, an opportunity for car manufacturers to promote and sell their latest models. A few years back there was little to see apart from this and some of the early classic car arrivals, often a lot of what was on offer was under cover or not open yet so it was good to see a real effort made to make Thursday this year the first ‘real’ day of this event.

A damp start is never the best weather to attend any outdoor event and it certainly takes the gloss off photographing outdoors, even so there was plenty to look around from classic to modern super cars parked up in the paddocks, the stunning Cartier collection and the ever present supporting motor manufacturer and trade stands, some hoping to help empty your wallet of a few pounds with that must have piece of motoring memorabilia.

Often repeated but no less true is that there is no way to see and experience the whole of the Festival of Speed in just one day. Even those I know who attend the entire weekend of this tyre squealing, burnout smoking, celebrity packed event, tell me they still missed key moments along the way and knowing I was back again on Sunday I decided to just take a general walk around on the Thursday and enjoy the slightly more relaxed atmosphere that comes with smaller crowds.

The opportunities for static car photography are too numerous to count and everywhere you turn there is a smartphone, tablet or top of the range DSLR being pointed at something, so it goes without saying that in this digital age there is little that goes unsnapped at an event like this. I hope the selection I have made goes some way towards giving a feel for what you can find on a Thursday at the Festival of Speed before the real high octane action takes place on the main hill climb over the rest of the weekend.