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|Honda to Participate in the 2006 Goodwood Festival of Speed|
| June 23, 2006– Honda Motor Co., Ltd. has announced that it will participate in the 2006 Goodwood Festival of Speed, to be held in Goodwood, West Sussex, England from Friday July 7 to Sunday July 9, 2006. Since 1993 when Lord March first opened up his grand estate to motorsports fans, Goodwood has been one of the world’s greatest historic motorsports events. The title of this year’s event is “A Century of Grand Prix”.
Honda began participating in the event at the invitation of Lord March, and last year in its seventh year of participation became the first Japanese manufacturer to act as the event’s main sponsor. This year again, Honda will enter drivers and riders on famous cars and bikes both classic and modern in the time trials to be carried out on the 1.16-mile hill climb.
Following is a summary of the riders, drivers, and machines that Honda will be entering in the time trials.
Riders (in alphabetical order)
Born October 16, 1985 in Australia.
Entered Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix in 2001, and was ranked 2nd in the 2005 season with five wins in the 250cc class. In 2006 entered MotoGP racing with Honda LCR—currently ranked 6th. Became the second-youngest rider in history to earn the pole position in the Dakar GP, the second race since his debut, and racked up a 2nd-place finish in the Turkish GP. Currently in the spotlight as one of the sport’s most promising young riders.
Born October 5, 1980 in England
Originally a trials competitor, started road racing at the age of 12. Ranks third overall in the 1997 British Supersport Championship, moving up to the World Supersport Championship the next year and the World Superbike Championship in 2002. Joined the Winston Ten Kate Honda team in 2006, taking the victory in the season opener. Is ranked 4th in the championship standings.
Born November 8, 1931 in England.
After first riding Honda in the 1960 Dutch TT Race, Redman played a central role on the Honda team until his retirement seven years later. Won six world championships (the most by any Honda rider), including the 250cc & 350cc class in 1962, the 250cc & 350cc class in 1963, the 350cc class in 1964, and the 350cc class in 1965, with 46 wins in all. He was also the rider who recorded Honda’s first win in the 500cc class—an historic event for the company—on May 22, 1966 in the second race of the season at the West German GP.
Born September 19, 1929 in Switzerland.
Was active in every world championship motorcycle racing class from 50cc to 500cc during his 13-year racing career, even participating as a passenger in the sidecar class. Moved to Honda in 1961, taking the world championship in the 125cc class in 1962, 1964, and 1966.
Born March 7, 1942 in Northern Ireland.
Debuted in 1959, and won races in both 350cc and 500cc classes in the 1963 Irish championships. Signed on with Honda in 1964, competing in the 50cc and 125cc classes in world championship motorcycle racing. Won the 50cc-class world championship the following year in 1965 riding an RC115. In the 125cc class, came in 5th in 1964, 8th in 1965, and 3rd in 1966, earning a reputation as a small-displacement class specialist.
Born in England.
Started racing at 15, amassing more than a 30-year career as an active rider. Took second place in the 1979 Suzuka 8 Hours race in Japan. Joined the World Grand Prix circuit in 1977, competing in the 500cc class from 1983 to 1990. Became known as ‘Rocket Ron’ for his bursts of speed off the starting line. In eight years, he placed in the top ten 61 times, including nine trips to the podium. Worked as a rider on the ELF Project from 1986~1988, ranking 4th in 1987 on an NSR500-engined ELF4.
Born January 9, 1942 in England.
Son of Leslie Graham, who won the 500cc class of world championship races four times between 1949 and 1952 and was killed in a crash at the Isle of Man TT Races in 1953. Raced motorcycles from 1961 to 1970, finishing in the points three times in the 500cc class of the Motorcycle World Championship in 1966. Later moved to auto racing in 1973.
Born in Northern Ireland.
First entered the Isle of Man TT Races in 1958, where he raced for Honda in 1962 and took 2nd in the 125cc class. Came in 3rd in 500cc class world championship races three times between 1970 and 1971.
Drivers (in alphabetical order)
Born April 18, 1979 in England.
Battled with Takuma Sato for the British Formula 3 championship in 2001. Joined B•A•R Honda (now Honda Racing F1 Team) in 2001, and worked in machine development for the following three years as a test driver. Rented out from Honda to the Minardi team in 2002, where he gained some F1 experience. Continues to play a supporting role in 2006 as the team’s third driver.
Gil de Ferran
Born November 11, 1967 in Brazil.
Won the British F3 Championship in 1992, and entered CART racing in 1995, winning one race that year on his way to being named Rookie of the Year. Joined Marlboro Team Penske in 2000, becoming only the fifth driver in CART history to win the Driver’s Champion title two years in a row, in 2000 and 2001. Signed on with B•A•R Honda (now Honda Racing F1 Team) as its Sporting Director in 2005.
Born January 19, 1980 in England.
Won the British Formula Ford Championship in 1998 before moving up to British F3 competition the following year, where he won Rookie of the Year. His race career continued to progress favorably, and he made his F1 debut with Williams in 2000. Joined Honda in 2003. Placed 3rd in the drivers’ ranking in 2004, with 10 trips to the podium including four second places. Placed 9th in the drivers’ ranking in 2005, and continues to race in 2006.
Born February 11, 1934 in England.
After dominating motorcycle racing as a seven-time world champion, Surtees made his F1 debut in the 1960 Monaco GP, winning the world championship in 1964. Joined Honda in 1967, driving the RA300 to victory in its debut race at the Italian GP to earn Honda’s second F1 win. As the only person ever to hold titles in both motorcycle and auto racing, he is referred to as the Master of Motorsport.
Born December 20, 1966 in England.
First entered the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) in 1993. Counts 24 victories and 56 podiums to his name. Ranked 3rd overall in 2003 and 5th overall in 2004 at the wheel of a Civic Type-R before winning the title outright in 2005 at the wheel of an Integra Type-R. Is defending his title this year and presently ranks top in the season’s standings.
Two years after Honda’s first victory in Formula 1, Britain’s John Surtees steered the RA300 racer to first place in the 1967 Italian Grand Prix. This was the second season into the F1 regulations that demanded 3.0-litre engine displacement.
John Surtees will be reunited with his old charger at this year’s Goodwood Festival.
The 301 was an upgraded version of the RA300. It participated in the 1968 USA Grand Prix, the 11th round of the Formula 1 World Championship. Qualifying for the ninth slot on the starting grid, it finally finished third. This car also competed in the last race of the Formula 1 season in 1968, the Mexican Grand Prix. At the controls for the year was John Surtees. It was the last time a Honda would appear in Formula 1 until 1983.
Driving this car at Goodwood in 2006 are three star Honda employees: Jenson Button, Anthony Davidson and Gil de Ferran.
This machine's victory in the 250cc class at the 1961 West German Grand Prix was the first GP win for a Japanese rider, with Kunimitsu Takahashi at the helm. The machine dominated its class, winning all ten events it entered.
At Goodwood, the RC162 will be ridden by Luigi Taveri, Tommy Robb and Jim Redman
Winner of seven out of eight races in the 1967 World Championship Series, the RC174, equipped with a DOHC 6-cylinder engine, took the Manufacturers' and Riders' Championships in the 350cc class. It also won the Isle of Man TT with Mike Hailwood in the hot seat.
This year at Goodwood, RC174 will be fired up the hill by Ralph Bryans and Stuart Graham.