Too fast. Not welcome!
The Irving Vincent team that swept to victory at the Goodwood Revival in 2014 has not been invited to compete this year. The formula for the prestigious event alternates year by year, with Pre 1953 bikes in even numbered years and Pre 1966 bikes in odd numbered years. When asked the reason for the lack of an invitation to defend their title, team owner Ken Horner replied, “About 50 seconds. That was our combined winning margin over the two legs of the race. That’s very disappointing but it is an invitationonly event so there’s nothing we can do.” In a letter to Ken Horner, Gordon Russell, who with his wife Sally coordinates the motorcycle component of the packed program, said, “We are currently sorting the 2016 50’s specification Revival invitations out. Of course your Vincent was discussed as a possible invite for this year. If you remember you and I had several conversations before your 2014 invite where I informed you that you were most welcome to come along but that if your bike proved to be substantially quicker than the fastest of the rest of the grid then a future invite would be unlikely. Inspection of the results and timing sheets show that your bike was substantially quicker than the rest of the field. Indeed even Jeremy McWilliams on a fast 60’s spec Norton could not keep with your bike. “Your Vincent is undoubtedly a superb racing machine and you and your team are to be congratulated for building and running it but is does not look particularly in keeping with a race recreating 1950’s racing. The Revival is as much about show as race but we do try very hard to make sure the racing is close and have pretty much succeeded over the years. Not only that it does a good job in recreating the sort of racing that went on in the 50’s and 60’s.
“Accordingly I have to tell you that you are not on the 2016 revival list.”
Staying home. Ken and Barry Horner with the Goodwood-winning Vincent.