THE driver who thrilled the crowds at the Goodwood Festival of Speed when he drove Jaguar's new F-PACE SUV up the famous hill climb on two wheels has told how he went about planning the daring stunt.
Terry Grant and fellow stunt man Lee Bowers teamed up to take on the 1.16-mile challenge and wow spectactors - with the all-wheel-drive Jaguar not only travelling almost on its side but with Lee balancing on top of the vehicle.
Terry, who hails from Knebworth in Hertfordshire, is no stranger to world class stunts with Jaguar as he was behind the world's biggest loop-the-loop at the car's launch last year so he is very familiar with its capabilities.
But even he admitted being nervous before taking on the Goodwood Festival of Speed challenge as he explained just minutes before they set off for the start line.
"I've always done crazy stuff since I was a kid, and professionally since about early 2000. With JLR I set the Guinness World Record in the very same F-PACE completing the largest loop-the-loop in the world in Frankfurt. It was the idea of the PR director's daughter who was playing in the kitchen with some toy cars and was a mega thing to do.
"For the hill climb stunt we are again using the 2.0-litre diesel powertrain as it is the lightest engine for the loop - it's also really cool to do something like this in a diesel-powered car. We have a ramp at the start line, so I go up the ramp and get it balanced over to two wheels and then ‘convince' my friend Lee to climb out the window," he explained.
Asked how he persuaded Lee that such a dangerous stunt was feasible, he joked: "I kind of took him round the back of the bike sheds and roughed him up a little bit! In reality I've been helping Lee in his career since he came on the scene - we do a lot of stuff together and he trusts me a million per cent. I know how agile and talented he is so I suggested this.
"The hardest part for me is that I've got someone else's head on the line. Normally I just look after me, but I need to take care of Lee too and if I take a few knocks and bangs along the way that's cool because I've signed up for that - it's what I do, but I have to make sure Lee is safe. That's my biggest concern.
"If, for example, something goes wrong like a blow-out on a tyre as we are only on two inches of the tyre with no tread then I need to react to protect him. The wind, the sun, camber, potholes - they're all factors to consider and they could really change the outcome."
And Lee Bowers, from Enfield, was certainly pumped up for the stunt as he explained the complexities of the performance.
"Usually I ride motorcycles and do stunts like headstands and the likes, but never on a car before. It's really hard to get a car that's stable for this sort of stunt, but the F-PACE is ideal so we thought it was time to push the boat out and try new stuff.
"I have excellent balance but it was a case of trying to find somewhere on the car to make this all work. Terry uses the ramp to get on two wheels at about 15mph and he creeps up to 20-25mph, slowing down at corners and increasing speed on the straight.
"It's on the straight that I climb out the passenger window, stand on the door and go into a headstand position wedging my head in the window. It's quite tight to get through the window with all gear and helmet on, but in theory that's how it all works."
And with that, the daring duo were off to take on what Lee admitted was one of his craziest stunts to date.
But thankfully the thousands of onlooking fans were treated to a flawless performance and one that was repeated daily at the Goodwood festival.
And as well as Lee's antics, Terry managed to complete the entire length of the hill climb route on just two wheels, ensuring spectators were fully aware of the car itself with the letters ‘F-PACE' emblazoned on both the roof and underside of the car.
After the successfully accomplished stunt, a relieved Terry added: "When Jaguar gave me the opportunity to reunite with the F-PACE used to break the world's largest loop record, I couldn't say no. Its light, stiff aluminium body and precise controls make it the perfect wheelie vehicle, and it was great to have Lee Bowers along for company - even if he did climb out halfway through!"