Even though it attracts some of the world's most amazing machinery every year, it took 20 for the quickest Goodwood Festival of Speed hillclimb time to be beaten. Nick Heidfeld's 41.6-second run in a McLaren MP4/13 Formula 1 car was beaten by Romain Dumas and the all-electric Volkswagen ID.R. You really should watch the video of the run.
Dumas actually beat Heidfeld's 41.6 seconds in a Friday practice run, setting a 41.18 up the famous hill. The next day, Dumas did even better, becoming the first person to go under 40 seconds at the Festival of Speed with a stunning 39.9 rip.
Heidfeld's record still stands, though. The timed Sunday shootout, where Dumas had the chance to set an official record, was marred by a damp track. Dumas easily won the day with a 42.32 second run, but since he only beat Heidfeld in Friday and Saturday exhibition runs, the 1999 record still stands.
The VW ID.R is just about the perfect car to set a blistering time at the Goodwood hillclimb. Its instant all-electric torque means its quick off the line and on corner exit, while four-wheel drive, slicks and real downforce mean traction is immense. This wild prototype is the quickest car to run up Pikes Peak and the quickest EV to lap the Nürburgring, so it's no real surprise to see it excel at Goodwood.
That doesn't mean it's not fun to watch, though. It looks like it's running up the hill in fast-forward.
It's worth noting that the Goodwood Festival of Speed Record has been held so long because after Heidfeld's run, from setting times. Given the speeds these cars are capable of achieving, and the tiny margin for error at the Festival of Speed, this is understandable.
And for fun, check out a side-by-side comparison of Dumas's 41.8-second Friday run and Heidfeld's record. Two very different machines producing similar speed.