When the Father of Goodwood Designed a Sports Car

The year was 1934, and the car became known as the AC 16/80 Prototype.

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Frederick Charles Gordon-Lennox was the 9th Duke of Richmond, the 9th Duke of Lennox, the 9th Duke of Aubigny, and the 4th Duke of Gordon. But more importantly, the chap who built the Goodwood Circuit in 1948, only to close it for racing in 1966 for safety reasons. However, testing could continue for a while, and Bruce McLaren died on the circuit doing just that four years later.

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Freddie March inherited the Dukedoms in 1935, along with the Goodwood Estate and the racecourse. By that time, he'd been involved with motor racing for seven years, gradually moving towards the organizational side.

The Duke in the early thirties.
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AC Cars had huge financial problems in the late twenties, but by 1932, the company restructured itself, launching a new chassis. Low-volume production continued until the war, with AC using its ancient 2-liter engine, paired with a modern four-speed transaxle.

At a young age, Freddie March had an internship at Bentley Motors, only to progress to designing aircrafts. In his spare time, he also penned cars, and in 1934, the result was known as the AC 16/80 prototype.

Lord March brought the car back to the Estate around fifteen years ago, parking it by , Lancias, and numerous motorbikes. Of course his grandfather never owned it.

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