(Press release by DaimlerChrysler)
Over the weekend of July 7, the Dodge brand will bring together one of the world’s legendary motor racing personalities — American racing ace Richard Petty — and one of its most celebrated race cars — Petty’s 1972 Dodge Charger — at the largest historic motor sports event in the world, the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
As part of the activities to mark the introduction of the Dodge brand to markets outside North America, NASCAR* racing’s most successful driver, Richard Petty, now aged 69, will be reunited with his restored 1972 Dodge Charger race car. He will compete in the Charger on the famous 1.16-mile hillclimb course in the grounds of the historic Goodwood House in West Sussex, England, the ancestral home of the Earl and Countess of March, who host this annual motor sport celebration.
Known in U.S. racing circles as ‘The King,’ Petty scored a record number of career victories (200) and notched up seven Winston Cup championships in his illustrious NASCAR campaigns. The 1972 Dodge Charger Petty will be driving is the same vehicle which carried him to eight race wins, 25 Top 5 and 28 Top10 finishes in 1972 on the way to securing his fourth championship crown.
“The Goodwood Festival of Speed is more than just a hillclimb — it is a celebration of motorsports, cars and drivers, showcasing the legacy of automotive greats,” said Joe Eberhardt, Executive Vice President – Global Sales, Marketing and Service, Chrysler Group. “I am sure that Richard and his classic Charger and Jochen in his NASCAR Charger will both fit in perfectly.”
Looking ahead to his Goodwood debut, Richard Petty commented: “It’s an honour to be asked to be part of the famous Festival of Speed. It’s such a prestigious event and one that is hugely popular worldwide. The names that have been a part of this Festival throughout the years are true auto racing champions and it’s always special when you’re invited to be a part of something as big as this.
“We’ve put a lot of time and effort into restoring our Charger. We want to make sure it’s at its best for Lord March and the thousands of visitors to the Festival. Dodge has been a huge partner throughout my career and I’m really looking forward to getting back behind the wheel during this prestigious event.”
Petty will drive the 1972 Dodge Charger on all three days over the festival weekend.
“To have Richard Petty at the Festival is a dream come true,” enthused Lord March. “It’s always a great honour when a legendary driver agrees to visit Goodwood, and I know his many fans in the UK will give him and his Charger a very special welcome.”
Peter Lambert, Managing Director of Chrysler Group UK, said: “We jumped at the chance to invite Richard Petty over for this great event, as the new Dodge brand, and the new Dodge Caliber are launched in our dealerships across the UK during July. I’m certain that Richard and his Dodge will be enthusiastically received.”