Stars of F1 at Goodwood

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RACING driver Lewis Hamilton found himself surrounded by fans today as he got behind the wheel at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.

Just a week before the British Grand Prix, the Formula One megastar went up the world-famous hillclimb course near Chichester in two McLarens - the car with which he won the world championship in 2008 and John Watson’s 1984 machine.

3/7/2011 (ST) ''Goodwood Festival of Speed took place from Friday 1st-Sunday 3rd July 2011.''Pictured is: Lewis Hamilton preparing for his race in the Formula 1 paddock.''Picture: Chris Winsor (112379-9716)''(PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU CREDIT CHRIS WINSOR)

3/7/2011 (ST) ''Goodwood Festival of Speed took place from Friday 1st-Sunday 3rd July 2011.''Pictured is: Lewis Hamilton preparing for his race in the Formula 1 paddock.''Picture: Chris Winsor (112379-9716)''(PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU CREDIT CHRIS WINSOR)

Hamilton signed hundreds of autographs and happily posed for pictures in between his driving duties as excited British motorsport enthusiasts got the rare chance to get up close to their hero. He got warm applause from the big crowds lining the track as he took it easy, waving and blipping the throttle as he passed the grandstands.

F1 fans are in heaven today as other stars driving at the festival include Nico Rosberg, Vitaly Petrov, Karun Chandhok and Ayrton Senna’s nephew Bruno Senna, plus ace Red Bull designer Adrian Newey. Meanwhile there are also legends from the past such as Damon Hill, Nigel Mansell, Sir Stirling Moss and Emerson Fittipaldi.

Yesterday Hamilton’s MacLaren teammate and fellow world champion Jenson Button was also besieged by petrolheads young and old as he too took to the festival track.

The festival programme was put back by about an hour after one of the drivers in the Supercar run that kicked off the day had a crash at Molecomb. Goodwood owner Lord March said that the driver had been taken to St Richard’s Hospital but was not seriously injured.

3/7/2011 (ST) ''Goodwood Festival of Speed took place from Friday 1st-Sunday 3rd July 2011.''Pictured is: Lewis Hamilton driving one of the McLaren supercars during the supercars display.''Picture: Sarah Standing (112379-3178)

3/7/2011 (ST) ''Goodwood Festival of Speed took place from Friday 1st-Sunday 3rd July 2011.''Pictured is: Lewis Hamilton driving one of the McLaren supercars during the supercars display.''Picture: Sarah Standing (112379-3178)

Over three days an estimated 175,000 people have soaked up the sunshine and the sights, sounds and smells of the world’s biggest celebration of motorsports history.

Don’t miss Monday’s News for a full report and a selection of pictures from the Festival of Speed.

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