Brock’s 1982 Commodore crashes at Goodwood

Peter Brock' 1982 Bathurst winning Commodore after crashi at Goodwood over the weeknd. Photo courtesy of Steve Pizzati

Peter Brock' 1982 Bathurst winning Commodore after crash at Goodwood over the weeknd. Photo courtesy of Steve Pizzati

It might have gone the distance at Bathurst in 1982 and 1983, but Peter Brock’s Marlboro Holden Dealer Team VH Commodore was looking second rate after owner Peter Champion crashed it at the Goodwood Festival of Speed over the weekend in the UK.

The 05 Commodore ran wide on one bend, slid on the grass and collided with some hay bales. The famous Holden sustained panel damage and broken steering.

“The brakes don’t get hot enough to work so I was relying on second gear to slow me down,” said Champion.

“Only problem was – I went for second and got fourth!”

Having brought the Commodore all the way from his own museum, Champion’s Brock Experience in Yeppoon, the Queenslander spent Saturday night working on the car. He even found a replacement steering rack from a 1982 Vauxhall Carlton in Chichester. Between runs Champion touched-up the paintwork, although the car completed the event with a cardboard insert on the right-front headlight.

Champion was pleased to complete the weekend and when asked how the car was driving on Sunday?

“As good as new, although, of course, not as good as it did yesterday!”

Not only did Champion get the car back out on Sunday he was awarded the “Spirit of Goodwood” trophy – ironically the only other Australian to win the trophy was Brock himself in 2006 when he drove a 48-215 Holden at the Revival meeting.

“It was an incredible event to be a part of,” Champion told Speedcafe from England this afternoon.

“I did not feel too bad after (Emerson) Fittipaldi stuck in the Camel Formula 1 car on the same corner.

“We were out there sliding around and having a heap of fun and I think the fans and the organisers appreciated it. To win the Spirit of Goodwood trophy was certainly something to be proud of.

“It would be great to head back there with a couple of our other cars in future years.”

Champion has spent 18 year collecting and restoring Brock’s race, rally and road cars including the 1956 Austin A30, Toranas, Group C and Group A Commodores, Ford Sierra and V8 Supercar Commodores.

The Goodwood Festival of Speed is an annual hill climb featuring historic motor racing vehicles that is held in the grounds of Goodwood House, West Sussex, England. It was started in 1993 by the present Earl of March in order to bring motor racing back to the Goodwood estate – a location steeped in British motor racing history.

Lord March wanted to bring back motor racing to the Goodwood Circuit, but did not have the necessary permit to host a race there. Therefore he instead hosted it on his own grounds.

Since 1993 the event has hosted many of the world’s greatest drivers and cars, along with an annual crowd of around 150,000 over three days.

The Festival of Speed’s sister event, the Goodwood Revival Meeting will be held 17-19 September. That event relives the glory days of the Goodwood Motor Racing Circuit and is viewed by many enthusiasts as the perfect complement to the Festival of Speed.

Brock drove a 48-215 Holden at the Revival Meeting in 2006, just a week before losing his life in the Targa West outside Perth.

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