Players Show - Festival of Everything

Words and Photography: Jonny Smith

Back to Goodwood once more!

We all have that one favourite show of the year. Where each year no matter what, it never disappoints and only gets better. Somehow into its 7th year already it was time for us to head back to Goodwood's Motor Circuit for Players Classic.

For me personally, this is a favorite. Somehow the weather is always fantastic and it's always great seeing cars out on the track and having a show and shine all in one, makes for a much more action-packed day and one that has been a blast to photograph.

Well now with its two-day format, it's becoming one of the best shows to attend and definitely at its greatest. No longer do I have to rush around all day trying to shoot both Track and Show in one. Now I can take a relaxed track focused Saturday and a gentle Show and Shine Sunday along with catching up with great friends from all over the world who've attended! No more of this feeling like a days work but a social gathering where the shutter on my camera clicks occasionally.

Saturday - Track Time

With us setting up the Rollhard stand on the Friday, it meant the second we arrived Saturday morning I was ready for the first session to start. Making a decision to slowly lap around the circuit throughout the day gaining different vantage points and to obtain a more varied photography set. With the sun and no clouds forecasted I also took to some much more sensible fashion ideas, a Bunnings Warehouse hat and a long sleeve tee, I was ready to rock'n'roll! Guess who wasn't a red lobster Saturday evening?!

I headed towards the main straight to start off, getting myself to grips with panning shots again. Remembering a few tips I'd learnt from inspiring photographers and just getting into the swing of it. (no pun intended) There's nothing more iconic than the clock tower and the pit wall here at Goodwood! 

Moving onto turn one, Madgwick Corner.

Inbetween each session, I would move slowly forward around the track. I'm not sure if most people know you can wander all the way around the track, it's a great idea honestly. We all know everyone drives as hard as they can through Woodcote Corner, through the final chicane and down the main straight. Here you get to see how fast they go around the rest of the lap!

 

It was entertaining to see people giving it their all down the back end of the track, how fast they dare through St Mary's Corner and how late they brake for Woodcote Corner. Overall Goodwood has some insanely fast corners which would definitely make a few people brown their pants. 

This UP GTI was definitely up there regarding a car I'd love to take around the track. Foot pinned flat for most of the track I bet with only the occasional lift off. 

Lunch swiftly came around, and this year I wasn't wandering back to the paddock to grab a bite and having to venture my way back around. No, this year I had another sensible idea. Taking a big bottle of water and food with me, I managed to set up a mini camp out at Lavant Corner and enjoyed some quiet time.  

We also like planes! 

Watching the planes come into land and also having a little wander finding some very fun viewpoints to shoot from, I even managed to play around with some slow exposure shots and the inner Larry Chen came out in me. 

I really enjoy this place. It's such an entertaining track to shoot at and something I don't get to do often as a whole. I slowly backtracked from the back end of the lap, retracing my steps towards the start/finish line ready for the Drift Demo set up by Monster. 

Ever since the first year here at Goodwood and the Players Show, with Fredric Aasbø in his GT86 and Mad Mike and the stupidly crazy RX7, drifting has always had a part in the show over the years. Honestly, nothing has ever come close to that first year, but Baggsy still did put on a great solo display!

Smoking up the Start/Finish straight like he drives a Subaru and vapes. 

With the day coming to a close and my appetite after another round of Chinese it was time to head back to the stand and look back over a great day of photography and a chance to unwind with a beer or four. 

Sundaze - Show and Shine

This is where the magic happens. Each year Players Classic seems to attract the most diverse crowd of enthusiasts from all around the country, and even Mainland Europe, to all be in one place each year. It really is a great sight to see, with the love of old classic Fords in one place, the now standard 'stance in a box' in the paddock pits area muddled in with your land yachts of old American cars and muscle/drag cars. There is seriously something for everyone to enjoy, but more importantly, a place where we can all put our differences aside and really appreciate how each different style is, and even come away with different ideas from one another. 

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Here we have the top tier of a classic Ford build, Looking over our left shoulder from our stand it wasn't hard to notice this rest modified Escort, Having a short chat with the dad of the owner the car has been in his possession for near 10 years. It wasn't till their trip to Players Classic last year they decided to get their arses in to gear and get the build rolling. With a frantic final eight weeks and finishing the car 9pm on Friday the guys deservedly picked up an award at the weekend. 

Here's a car that was a stand out throughout the weekend, Jakes S13. Only a few weeks ago was this car still in Japan and a part of Spirit Rei's demo cars, recently being showcased at Tokyo Auto Salon back in January. 

 

A beautiful car I couldn't stop gazing at. The kit is a masterpiece. 

Tom from Meguair's Renault 5 is perfection, One of our highlights from this year's event. Showing that the old school Dimma kit still has it after all these years.

Right now, Tommy and a group of 11 other cars are driving 2000 miles all the way to Romania in aid of Cancer Research. Here's the link to Donate. Any donation, even just £1 would be appreciated! <3

 Everything about it just works so well "2g4" as Ali G would say.

Like I said, something for everyone. 

Shut the front door!!

Now here is a car that fully surprised the heck out of me! All of us here at Rollhard are no strangers to Volvos, We had one and we have a deep bond and love with them. But never would I have thought I'd be seeing one sat perfectly on a set of Work VSKFs. I almost missed the car as it was towards to end of the day when I saw it, I am glad I didn't! 

They really are one of the greatest wheels around, usually bolted to something Japanese, they don't look out of place here! 

YES YES YES.

May as well stay on that Japanese wheel on a non-Japanese car theme. Without a doubt each year, sat in pretty much the same spot, Paddy's MK6 GTI is another case towards simple ideas creating maximum results. It's that perfect balance of being capable of driving hundreds of miles, from Ireland to parking up and sitting flawlessly, especially on the TE37s. A set of wheels we both agreed should be on every car, period, even those in GT Sport. 

 

Car shows are always great. It's the one time lots of people you know are all in the same place for once, making life that little bit easier to meet up. Always good to see Ben's E28 as he lives a good 6 hours away from myself. 

I'm not sure how many of you will know what these are, but from the last time I saw the BM it's now supporting these little badges of honor. These are the Vignette tags you purchase to be allowed to drive around Austria. The home to one of the greatest car events in the world Worthersee. They show a dedicated 5000 odd miles of pure driving through the UK and Europe. 

Not only had Ben brought down his E28, but also our good friend John Ludwick who'd just flown over from the US for the show along with another friend Corey! Here they are with Andy from Kean Suspension.

Two Americans and a Belgian walk into a bar... there's a joke there somewhere.

Once again the guys from Kean brought over their show stoppers and this time they brought over their new weapon in their Arsenal of show stoppers, A De Tomaso Pantera!

Their 308 GTB is so last year......

To have a read of the Ferrari click this link.

Another car wearing the Vignette badge of honor. Stefans Vento isn't bad for being static and making it all the way to Worthersee. Shame the Police there weren't as stoked as us that it made it in one piece... Next time you complain about speedbumps, remember this car. 

The Aircooled guys and girls killing it as normal. 

Land Yachts

Here's a build that has a lot of subtle changes and good amount of unseen work. Evans has pretty much overhauled the entire suspension and arms for this car, importing in parts from all over.

On the front there's a set of FIGs upper camber arms alongside the 35mm shortened knuckles. The back has FIGs upper control arms, Megan camber, toe and thrust arms with polybushed subframe using MK4 supra parts and even the rear struts spaced inwards for more wheel to strut clearance. All of this, and some great bit of maths, Evans has created one masterpiece and leads the way of VIP cars this side of the Pond. 

If all that wasn't enough the Lexus is also running a full big brake kit, Walton Motorsport 8pot 380mm fronts and 6pot 380mm rears which fill the wheels perfectly and probably means he has rear brakes bigger than most peoples fronts!

 The perfect fitment. 

Adam King is no stranger to a big body car. This time really stepping the game up with this S Class. Sat on 22s, the immersive presence the car has is ridiculous. 

Dean's Lincoln Continental probably would've won longest car. Also seeing it bought back brillant memories of cruising in Jim's Continental up and down The Strip at H2Oi.

Show and Shine continued...

The countdown to 2020. 

This year was without a doubt another fantastic show. We look forward to seeing how next year can top the 7 before! 

 

I'll leave you with my entire 2 days worth of photos below!

 

Players Classic 2019 - Track Time

 

Players Classic 2019 - Show and Shine
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