Archive for October, 2015

stew m10b

Jackie Stewart tests AJ Foyt’s Mclaren M10B Chev F5000 during Questor GP qualifying, perhaps the only time the Scot drove an F5000 car?…

The Questor Grand Prix was an intensely interesting experiment, a shame the Ontario circuit didn’t repeat it in subsequent years.

The event took place in March 1971 at the newly completed Ontario Motor Speedway. Promoted as the ‘Battle of Two-Worlds’, the USA and its Formula A/5000 cars against the best of European F1.

In 1971 there were only 11 championship F1 events so it was relatively easy for the teams to fit the event in, it gave them an extra race test without championship points at stake early in the season, and the prize money was $US278K or in 2015 $ terms, $M1.6, so it was well worth the effort!

questor tickets

For the Ontario Speedway promoters it was an ideal way to promote their new venue, the owners had aspirations of having a second US GP there, running of an event successfully provided the essential credentials to advance that goal. The event was well promoted with over 65000 punters rocking up on raceday.

The course itself comprised the start/finish straight, the first banked corner of the oval layout and a twisty infield section.

questor promo

The Grid…

The American entry included Peter Revson’s Surtees TS8 Chev, Mark Donohue Lola T192 Chev, George Follmer Lotus 70B Ford, AJ Foyt in a McLaren M10B Chev, Bob Bondurant’s Lola T192 Chev and Al and Bobby Unser, both in Lola T190/2 Chevs, Swede Savage was Eagle Mk5 Plymouth mounted and Tony Adamowicz raced a Lola T192 Chev.

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Mark Donohue’s Lola T192 Chev 14th, Derek Bell March 701 Ford 15th.

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Tony Adamowicz’ Lola T192 Chev 17th, Graham Hill.

3 litre GP entrants included Ferrari with 2 1970 spec 312B’s (Mario Andretti and Jackie Ickx), Lotus (Emerson Fittipaldi and Reine Wisell in 72 Ford’s), BRM (Jo Siffert and Pedro Rodriquez P160, Howden Ganley P153 V12), Brabham (Graham Hill BT34 Ford ‘Lobster Claw’ and Tim Schenken BT33), Matra (Chris Amon MS120B V12), March (711 for Ronnie Peterson), Tyrrell (Jackie Stewart in 001), McLaren (M19A’s for Denny Hulme and Peter Gethin), and two privateer March 701’s entered by Frank Williams (Henri Pescarolo and Derek Bell).

seppi

Siffert in his ‘brand spankers’ BRM P160, Reine Wisell and friend, McLaren’s Hulme & Gethin.

denny

Attractive young maiden and Hulme poring over the innards of his McLaren M19A.

We may never see such a star studded battle ever again.  All the heavy hitters from each side of the Atlantic were there.  A race fans dream which some saw as a repeat of Monza’s ‘Race of Two Worlds’ held in 1957 and 1958.

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Denny Hulme, McLaren M19A Ford 3rd and Ronnie Peterson, March 711 Ford 13th.

jys

L>R top to bottom. Hill in his Brabham, #29 Ron Grable Lola T190/2 Chev #8 Denny Hulme McLaren M19A Ford, #28 Stewart McLaren M10 B Chev, Peterson March 711 Ford, Howden Ganley BRM P153.

Racing…

stew grid

Stewart, Tyrrell 001 Ford, Siffert BRM P160 and Ickx Ferrari 312B on the grid. (unattributed)

The race was run in two 100-mile heats because the F5000’s didn’t have the fuel capacity for a 200 mile race, a GP’s normal duration.

Mario Andretti, having just taken his first GP win in the season opener at Kyalami, South Africa, had an accident in qualifying on Friday and missed most of the session.  He also had an Indy race on Saturday at the Phoenix Oval. He started in 12th place, standing on his Friday time.

With AJ Foyt racing at Phoenix Jackie Stewart did some laps in his McLaren M10B doing a time good enough for 11th on the grid. Foyt was uncomfortable with the Scots setup and reverted to his own.

Jackie Stewart was on pole in his Tyrrell from Amon, Ickx, Hulme, Rodriguez and Hill with Donohue’s Lola the best of the F5000’s, then Siffert, Fittipaldi and Follmer’s Lotus 70.

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Hill, Brabham BT34 Ford 26th, Siffert.

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Hill and Ickx, Ferrari 312B 11th.

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L>R top to bottom. Fittipaldi, Andretti, Amon Matra MS120B 4th from Ickx Ferrari and Hulme’s McLaren M19A..

In the first heat Andretti worked his way to the front, caught and passed Jackie Stewart under braking for the first turn and won pulling away, much to the delight of the American crowd.

Initially Ickx used his Ferrari’s power to take the lead from Stewart, Amon, Hulme, Hill and Siffert . Spins for Siffert and Hulme dropped them back, while Stewart battled to get past Ickx, outbraking him and moving ahead. There was a high attrition rate, Foyt retired early with handling issues and Follmer with an oil fire in his Lotus, Hill was the first F1 car to drop out as he felt his Cosworth engine tighten, Savage crashed his Eagle heavily into a concrete wall off the infield section of the course suffering severe leg and head injuries. Their were other Chevrolet failures amongst the Formula A contenders, both the F1 and 5 litre cars engines were suffering as a consequence of the long straight and therefore long period at maximum revs.

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Hulme on row 2 McLaren M19A, Ickx Ferrari 312B behind, nose in shot is the Brabham BT33 of Tim Schenken. (The Cahier Archive)

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Reine Wisell, Lotus 72 Ford, ret’d.

Andretti was moving up, Donohue, defended strongly in his Lotus before Andretti passed him for third, which became second when Amon pitted with a puncture.

Together with three laps remaining, Andretti moved ahead to the delight of the crowd, taking the win from Stewart, Donohue was forced to pit from third with fuel injection dramas allowed Siffert into 3rd with his BRM.

Retirements included both Marchs; Pescarolo with a cracked chassis member and Peterson going off after a shock absorber failure, both Lotus 72s retired, Fittipaldi with an injection issue.

andretti

Mark Donohue’s FA Lola T192 Chev 14th ahead of Andetti’s Ferrari 312B 1st. (unattributed)

In the 2nd heat outside front row starter Jackie Stewart got the jump on Andretti and led.  Andretti stalked Stewart for a handful of laps then repeated his first turn, first heat overtaking manouevre on Stewart to take the lead and the win.

Twenty-two cars gridded for heat two 45-minutes after the first. Foyt was persuaded to venture out in his McLaren Chevy and Peterson rejoinined after repairs but only once a large part of the race had been run.

Andretti was on pole but lost out to Stewart on the opening lap. Behind, Siffert led Ickx, Hulme, Amon and Donohue, that order changed when Ickx tried to dive past Siffert at the end of one of the short straights, Ickx spun and took Siffert with him.  Whilst Seppi continued Ickx pitted with a puncture.

stew

Stewart, Tyrrell 001 Ford 2nd.

Luckless Donohue pitted from third with injection dramas after a fine run, easily the quickest of the Formula A’s in his Penske Lola T192, Amon took over third in his Matra.

At the front, Andretti was closing in again on Stewart, the Tyrrell suffering a broken rear anti-roll bar which was causing issues on the banking, Stewart elected to yield as Andretti made his move.

The tough nature of the circuit again took its toll. Even Andretti was impacted, his Ferrari not revving cleanly and puffing smoke. He held on to win though with Stewart second from Amon. Rodriguez benefited from Siffert slowing after losing a suspension bolt to take fourth ahead of Hulme, Schenken and Ron Grable the first FA car home in seventh.

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John Cannon in an STP sponsored March 701 Ford 12th. (unattributed)

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Andretti’s victorious Ferrari 312B in essentially 1970 spec. (The Cahier Archive)

In terms of overall results the complex points structure meant that a car with a high finish in one race could outscore a car that had finished both, gave Andretti the win he deserved, Stewart was second from Hulme, Amon and Grable heading the US-runners in seventh.

The race was popular with the crowd, the American racers felt their cars had been uncompetitive and the European’s, other than those who had extensive sportscar experience of Daytona, were not fond of the banking!

The Questor Group, builder/owners of the circuit encountered financial problems shortly after the event so it was not repeated, leaving it a ‘great might have been’.

Certainly as F5000’s became more sophisticated into the 1970’s, the Lola T330/2 famously as quick as many F1 cars at Mosport and Watkins Glen, circuits upon which they both raced, would have made such an event much closer, perhaps, than the Questor GP was in 1971?

Overall Results: 1 Andretti; 2 Stewart; 3 Hulme; 4 Amon; 5 Schenken; 6 Siffert; 7 Grable; 8 Gethin; 9 Ganley; 10 Rodriguez. Fastest Lap: Rodriguez, 1m42.777s (111.49mph).

winners

L>R top to bottom. Hill/Schenken/Peterson and friend, happy winner Andretti, Jo Siffert

Etcetera…

ickx

Ickx doing a few laps in Andretti’s chassis during practice, Ferrari 312B. (unattributed)

gethin

L>R top to bottom. #7 Gethin McLaren M19A Ford 8th, #14 Siffert BRM P160 6th, #2 Fittipaldi Lotus 72 Ford 21st, John Cannon March 701 Ford 12th.

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Tim Schenken Brabham BT33 Ford, 5th.

YouTube Footage…

Etecetera…

swede savage

Dan Gurney’s protege Swede Savage deserved a more competitive car than the ’69 Eagle Mk5 Plymouth, the oldest car in the race. He crashed heavily and didn’t return to racing for 6 months after severe leg injuries and a ‘bruise to his brain stem’. (unattributed)

al

Al Unser in his ‘Kastner Brophy Racing’ Lola T192 Chev, #38 behind in the colour shot is brother Bobby’s similar ‘Charlie Hayes Racing’ T192. (unattributed)

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Ontario lap 1 Questor GP vista (unattributed)

ickx

Andretti’s Ferrari 312B, lines of that 1970/71 series of Ferrari’s about as good as it gets?, #18 Henri Pescarolo’s Frank Williams March 711 Ford (unattributed)

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1971 Questor GP entry (unattributed)

jys

Reine Wisell top left and Jackie Stewart, Foyt F5000 McLaren M10B mounted, engineeer familiarising JYS with the dash and rev limits ‘7500 not 10500 pleeease Jackie…’

Bibliography…

The Nostalgia Forum, oldracingcars.com, HistoricRacingNews.com

Photo Credits…

Getty Images-all images by Getty unless otherwise stated, The Cahier Archive

exhibition
‘Motorclassica’ is now 5 years old, although its the first time i have been, its a bit too road car oriented to pique my interest, but it was great. The assembly of Bugatti’s worth the effort alone, the highlight of that display the first public appearance in over 60 years of the T37A Bill Thomson drove to two AGP wins in 1930 and 1932…
The event comprises a motor show, themed each year, a Concours d’Elegance which is
one of only two Australian events nominated in the prestigious International Historic
Motoring Awards. There is also a tour through the city streets for Concours entrants, an auction and over 400 enthusiast owned cars on display in the Royal Exhibition Building’s surrounds.
The venue is in Melbourne’s CBD fringe, The Royal Exhibition Building erected in the Carlton Gardens for the Melbourne International Exhibition in 1880 showed the cars to great effect, a terrific backdrop with a sense of grandeur that is apt.
reb
Themes this year were celebrations of 50 Years of the Supercar, (defined as the build date of the Lambo Miura), the Shelby Mustang, the Ferrari Dino, the Bugatti Club Australia and 70 years of MV Agusta.
This post is largely pictorial with the exception of a tangent about the dual AGP winning Bugatti T37A and its driver Bill Thomson, which ‘broke cover’ at Motorclassica. I have not gone overboard with captions to ‘state the obvious’ only providing information where it may be of use…
porkers
ballot 1

Ballot 2LS

ballot 2

Ballot 2LS

ballot info
ballot steering

Ballot 2LS

art

(Artist; Martin de Lang)

miura 1
miura 3
 mv 1
mv 2
mv 3

1971 MV 150RSs: ‘Rapido Super Sport’ 4 stroke single cylinder pushrod OHV.

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MV 150 RSs

mv 5

1946 MV Agusta 98

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mv 6

MV 98

merc
 bentley 1
 bentley 2
 panorama
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bug 2

Bugs x 2: Nose of a T43 and front of T57

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Supercharged Bug 4 cylinder engine, maybe one of you can help me with the correct model, a Tourer.

Dual Australian Grand Prix Winner: Ex Bill Thomson Bugatti Type 37A Chassis ‘37358’…

37 1

Bugatti T37A ‘37358’ in all its part restored glory. This T37 victorious in 1930 and 1932 is the veteran of more Australian Grands Prix than most.

37 2

T37A ‘37358’37 3

As the owners summary of the car makes clear the cars attendance in Melbourne is the first time this significant Bugatti has ‘seen the light of day’ in public for over 60 years.

In Bob King’s ‘Australian Bugatti Register’ ‘37358’ is said to be ‘…possibly the most famous of all Australian racing Bugattis’. The following short history of the car is from John Blanden’s ‘Historic Racing Cars in Australia’ is in addition to the short description above.

For the 1930 AGP the car was specially prepared with wire wheels and separate brake drums in place of the integral alloy equipment because of the roughness of Phillip Island’s gravel roads. After early plug trouble Bill Thomson was a comfortable winner in 3 hours 6 minutes, an average of 64mph in front of 6000 spectators, the ‘Island in those days a long way from Melbourne.

thommo island

Bill Thomson and car owner/riding mechanic Prof Arthur Burkitt, during their successful 1930 AGP win. Phillip Island. Bugatti T37A ‘37358’. (Bob King Collection)

In 1931 Hope Bartlett bought and raced the T37 but blew up with less than 7 miles to go whilst in the lead. Carl Junker won in a Bugatti T39.

For 1932 Thompson again raced the car which by this stage was owned by the Woolworth Tyre Company. It was off scratch giving 4 minutes to Carl Junker. Thomson won by 4 minutes having come through the field.

thommo

Bill Thomson before the off, AGP 1930, Phillip Island. Thomson won 3 AGP’s 1930 and 1932 in ‘37358’ and 1933 in a Riley Brooklands. Period experts rate Thomson and Alf Barrett as Australia’s greatest pre-War drivers, noting Alf raced post-war as well. Thomson certainly the more successful in terms of results. Thomson perished during the war in a Consolidated Coronado flying boat accident in the Marshall Islands enroute to Hawaii. A shot biography of Thomson is included as an addendum to this article. (Bob King Collection)

In October 1932 at the Mt Victoria Pass Hillclimb, in Sydney’s Blue Mountains, the car crashed heavily ‘as a result there have been suggestions that a replacement chassis was required, obtained and fitted but this has never been absolutely confirmed’.

Offered for sale but unsold, in May 1935 Thomson took the Australian Record for the Mile at 112.5 in the annual speed record attempts held near Canberra.

John Sherwood won the Australian 5 Mile Championship at Penrith Speedway in it, in Sydney’s outer west in 1936.

Tom Peters acquired it and raced it in the 1936 Australian Grand Prix (or 1937 Australian GP as has become the custom to call this event) at Victor Harbour, South Australia in December, retiring on lap 7.

‘37358’ was sold to New South Wales driver Ron Mackellar, shortly thereafter the cars engine blew and was replaced by a side-valve Ford V8, the car called the ‘Mackellar Special’. Raced at the 1938 AGP at Bathurst it finished 4 minutes behind Peter Whitehead’s victorious ERA R10B.

Wally James was driving the car during a qualifying heat of the Australian Speedway Championships at Penrith on Anzac Day, 25 April 1939 when he lost control and plunged into a group of spectators at over 90mph, killing 3 and injuring 39. James was shattered and never raced again, although a later enquiry showed the crowd sitting in front of safety fences.

Driven by Ken Laing for a while post war, the car was sold to ‘Gelignite Jack Murray’, a real character of the sport and so named for his antics with explosives in the Round Australia Trials of the period. Murray was successful in the now very old car, it contested the 1947 AGP at Bathurst, retiring with piston failure. Bill Murray won the race, Formula Libre and handicapped in those days in an MG TC.

mac spl

Bill MacLachlan in ‘37358’, by that stage the ‘Mackellar Spl’ at Bathurst , Easter 1949 just before its wild ride thru the bush due to a broken track rod. (Bob King Collection)

The car then passed through John Crouch’s and Bill MacLachlan’s hands, Bill had a lucky escape in the car upon his debut in it at Bathurst, Easter 1949. A broken track rod approaching Quarry Bend caused a wild ride down ‘the roadside bank missing solid trees by inches before it came to rest in a small clearing’.

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MacLachlan in T37A ‘37358’ Mackellar Spl Ford V8, Bathurst 1950. (Max Stahl Collection)

Little damage was done, the old war horse continued on racing, Ettore made em’ tough! through 1950 when it was timed over the flying quarter mile at Bathurst at 113.21mph. Into 1951 ‘37358’ continued to race including contesting the 1952 AGP at Bathurst finishing 13th in the race won by Doug Whiteford’s Lago Talbot T26C.

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Bill MacLachlan at Quarry Bend Bathurst 1952. T37A ‘37358’ Mackellar Spl. (Byron Gunther)

In 1954 the car was sold to Ralph  Snodgrass in Queensland, he used it briefly before acquiring Whiteford’s Lago, rolled the Lago and then kept both cars for decades.

‘While the car remained with Snodgrass in 2000, many of the original Bugatti components have been emerging over the years as various restorations evolve. Tom Roberts was suggested to have the ‘original’ chassis and some other ‘bits and pieces’ with Kent Patrick having other chassis and engine parts in a replica T37A he constructed in the 1980’s’ Blanden said.

Clearly ‘37358’ is in sympathetic hands with Michael Miller’s ownership, Buggatiste’ globally will follow with interest the restoration of this fabulous car and revealing its history in ‘definitive form’.

37 4

T37A ‘37358’

bug 8

T35TC/51 chassis  ‘4847’ GP: DOHC supercharged straight 8

outside
posters
mustangs
bristol

Bristol Zagato

pano 2
bmw
bentley
shell
pano 3
Tailpiece: A dogs life…
dogs
Bill Thomson: Triple Australian GP Winner Biography…
The following biography of Bill Thomson is by the late, great Australian Motor Racing Historian Graham Howard and is from ‘The Australian Dictionary of Biography’.
‘William Bethel Thompson (1906-1945), racing motorist, was born on 28 December 1906 at Summer Hill, Sydney, second child of William Ernest Thompson, customs clerk, and his wife Gladys Macdonald, née Bethel, both native-born. On completing his education at Sydney Grammar School in 1923, William worked in the motor trade. He married Jean Mavis Anderson at St Stephen’s Presbyterian Church, Sydney, on 26 September 1929.

Of moderate means, he was helped by Arthur Burkitt, professor of anatomy at the University of Sydney, who owned several of the cars that Thompson raced. He retired from his first Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island, Victoria, in 1929, but won the 1930 race in a new, supercharged Type 37A Bugatti owned by Burkitt who travelled as riding mechanic. Starting from scratch, Thompson won again in the same car in 1932 and won for a third time in a Brooklands Riley in 1933. He finished second (by 14 seconds) driving a supercharged MG Magnette in 1934 and was again second (by 27 seconds) in 1935.

Despite his youth, Thompson approached his driving with a thoroughness that was uncommon in Australian motor racing, then in its infancy. Observers commented on the clean and efficient presentation of his cars, and on the lack of last-minute work they needed. Behind the wheel he was very fast and exceptionally consistent; his lap times on the 6.569-mile (10.571 km) rectangle of rough and dusty Phillip Island roads often varied by no more than a second. An outstanding finishing record was an essential part of his success. While he made occasional driving errors, he took exceptional care of his cars. He did some of his own mechanical work, but had expert helpers, among them the skilled engineer Bill Balgarnie who was often his riding mechanic.

Strongly built and about 5 ft 11 ins (180 cm) tall, Thompson parted his dark hair in the centre. Contemporaries recall him as well-tailored, confident—almost calculating—but also impulsive and given to practical joking at post-race parties. His Riley and MG drives were for Melbourne motor traders and he moved to that city in 1934 to head the MG department of Lane’s Motors Pty Ltd; he later transferred to the Shell Co. of Australia Ltd. He was briefly involved with midget speedcars in Melbourne and Sydney in 1934-35, but from 1936 his racing career faded. Divorced in 1938, Thompson married Millicent Francklyn Ironside, née King, a widow with two children, on 10 June 1942 at the government statist’s office, Melbourne.

Joining the Royal Australian Air Force as flying officer in 1940, Thompson was based in Melbourne from 1941 where he organized the manufacture and supply of engine spares for rescue boats. He held the rank of squadron leader when he was drowned in an aircraft accident on 12 February 1945 in the Marshall Islands, Pacific Ocean. His wife survived him, as did the two sons of his first marriage’.

Bibliography and Photo Credits…
John Blanden ‘Historic Racing Cars in Australia’, Graham Howard ‘History of The AGP’, Graham Howard ‘The Australian Dictionary of Biography, Bob King Collection, Max Stahl Collection, Byron Gunther

beltoise brm

All drivers have a day of greatness, surely!? Jean Pierre-Beltoise’ was his great wet weather drive at Monaco in 1972 when he won the race in a drive of controlled speed and aggression in the toughest of conditions in his BRM P160B V12…

Even ‘Rainmaster’ Jacky Ickx finished second to the Frenchman in his Ferrari 312B2 that day with Emerson Fittipaldi’s Lotus 72D Ford in third.

JPB started from row 2, his task made a little easier on lap 5 when Clay Regazzoni went up the escape road at the chicane taking Fittipaldi and Ickx with him, they had been braking when Clay did…

But it was a great drive, JPB’s first and last GP win and BRM’s last, sadly.

Click here for an article on JPB i wrote a while back… https://primotipo.com/2015/01/15/r-i-p-jpb/

image

Beltoise with Chris Amon’s Matra MS120C alongside and Brian Redman’s McLaren M19A Ford chasing (Michael Turner)

Monaco GP ’72 footage…

 

stew laguna

Jackie Stewart and his ‘Cowcatcher Winged’ Lola T260 Chev, Laguna Seca 1971. (Pete Biro)

It was always going to be tough to beat the dominant McLaren team but the combination of World Champion Jackie Stewart and Lola, who had a strong Can Am track record looked a good combination to give them a run for their money in 1971…

team meeting

JYS convening a team engineering and set-up meeting in the Road America paddock, August 1971. Bob Marston in red shirt, JYS and in the green hat George Woodward. (Jim Buell)

Part 1: Lola and the CanAm Championship…

john and bruce

John Surtees, Lola T70 Mk2 Chev leads Bruce McLaren’s McLaren M1B Chev at St Jovite, Mont Tremblant, 11 September 1966, they finished in this order. (unattributed)

The CanAm Championship morphed out of a series of professional level sports car races which had taken place for over a decade. In 1965 this comprised 4 events, 3 won by the Chaparral 2 and 1 by a Lola T70.

surteees monterey

John Surtees, Lola T70 Mk2 Chev at The Corkscrew, Laguna Seca, 1966. (Dave Friedman Collection)

The first CanAm series held in 1966 was won by John Surtees in a quasi-works Lola T70; ‘Big John’ won 3 races, Dan Gurney and Mark Donohue 1 apiece in Lola T70’s as well with Phil Hill taking a race in a Chaparral 2E.

Whilst Colin Chapman designed the first ‘modern monocoque’ single-seater, the Lotus 25, which made its debut at Zandvoort in 1962, it was Eric Broadley who first applied the new construction technique to a sports-racer with his 1963 Lola Mk6 Ford.

lola mk 6

Augie Pabst’s Mecom owned Lola Mk6 Ford, Road America 500 1964 DNF. (unattributed)

Chapman was convinced the backbone chassis which worked so well in his Elan road would migrate to sports-racing success but the Lotus 30/40 chassis were as floppy as a centenarians todger with results reflecting same. Even Jim Clark could not make those cars sing.

So impressed were Ford with Eric’s Mk6 he was famously contracted to lead the design team of its GT40, a car with a steel tub.

monterey vista

‘Monterey Grand Prix’, Laguna Seca, 16 October 1966. Phil Hill won in a Chaparral 2E Chev. Bottom left is Dan Gurney with his Ford powered Lola T70.(Dave Friedman Collection)

surtees

#7 John Surtees Lola T70 Mk2 Chev 12th and #30 Dan Gurney Lola T70 Ford DNF, Laguna Seca, October 1966. (Dave Friedman Collection)

The aluminium tubbed T70 was one of his first designs after his ‘Ford sabbatical’, that design process useful in terms of evolving the car Eric thought Ford should have built in the first place!

In all it’s variants the T70 remained a ‘competitive tool’ in both Group 7 (CanAm) and Group 5 World Sports Car Championship events into the dawn of the 1970’s, Teddy Pilette qualified his Team VDS Mk3B 19th at Le Mans in 1971, not bad for an old car with a pushrod OHV V8 against the might of the 5 litre, 12 cylinder Porsche 917 and Ferrari 512!

In endurance racing the T70 was really only held back by a suitable engine, the 12/24 hour longevity or lack thereof of the Chev engines usually chosen to power it. The small block Chev not having the benefit of factory investment in its development in the same way Ford’s Le Mans winning small block ‘Windsor’ V8 did.

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Roger Penske’s Donohue/Parsons Daytona winning Lola T70 Mk#B Chev at Sebring in 1969. Here DNF driven by Ronnie Bucknum and Mark Donohue. (unattributed)

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‘Top Guns’ interviewed for the TV, Las Vegas 1966: McLaren, Parnelli Jones and John Surtees. (Dave Friedman Collection)

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‘Stardust Grand Prix’ 13 November 1966, Las Vegas 1966 start. #7 Surtees Lola T70 Mk2 Chev 1st, #65/66 Phil Hill 7th, Jim Hall DNF both Chaparral 2E Chev, #5 Chris Amon McLaren M1B Chev DNF. (Dave Friedman Collection)

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Surtees from Jim Hall’s Chap 2E Chev early in the race. Vegas 1966. (Dave Friedman Collection)

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Las Vegas 1966. (Dave Friedman Collection)

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Surtees from Jim Hall’s Chaparral 2E Chev, 1st and DNF. Las Vegas 1966. (Dave Friedman Collection)

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Surtees, Lola T70 Mk2 Chev, Las Vegas 1966. (Dave Friedman Collection)

surtees happy

Happy Chappy. Surtees after his race and CanAm series win, Las Vegas, November 1966. (Dave Friedman Collection)

Things would get tougher for Lola, Chaparral and the rest of the grid for the 1967 CanAm.

surtees bridge

Surtees Lola T70 Mk3B Chev in the Bridghampton pitlane, September 1967. 4th. (Dave Friedman Collection)

Jim Hall made it tough for himself  in ’66/7 by chasing championships in both Europe and the US, Chaparral sought titles in both the World Sporscar Championship and the CanAm. They were always a threat with their unique blend of factory Chev engines and stunning chassis and aerodynamic innovation and quasi General Motors support.

Click here for an article on his 2F and it’s 1967 endurance campaign;

https://primotipo.com/2014/06/26/67-spa-1000km-chaparral-2f/

But Bruce McLaren was the ‘dark horse’ challenger.

McLaren had been racing in US sportscar events since his Cooper days, he became more serious with the acquisition of Roger Penske’s Cooper/Zerex Special, click here for an article on that car;

https://primotipo.com/2015/03/19/roger-penske-zerex-special/

The Zerex became a test-bed for his own cars, the M1 which he raced in both the UK and US through until 1966. These spaceframe cars handled well and were very light but the aluminium Oldsmobile V8’s which provided the cars weight advantage and balance were also limited by their power; the blocks ‘maxxed out’ at about 4.5 litres so the cars gave away plenty of mumbo to those running 6 litre engines.

McLaren and Chris Amon ran Chevs in their factory M1B’s in 1966 so Bruce had clarity about the big engine and its packaging needs, the Kiwi had a clear fix on what was needed to win in the CanAm. He couldn’t match Jim Hall in terms of innovation but he could with sound design, engineering and construction of a monocoque car with a 6 litre Chev engine and simple aerodynamics, all key elements the T70 possessed and which also needed to be improved.

In essence this was the design brief McLaren gave to Robin Herd, the M6 McLaren the ’67 factory car the result. M6 started the ‘Bruce and Denny Show’ with 5 wins and Bruce deservedly taking the championship.

las vegas

Class of ’67 at Las Vegas, 12 November ; Jim Hall’s Chaparral 2G Chev from #4 McLaren’s McLaren M6A Chev, #21 Parnelli Jones’ Lola T70 Ford…all DNF, the race won by Surtees Lola T70 Mk3B. (unattributed)

The dominance of the McLaren was a function of several elements. The design and execution of simple well engineered cars which arrived for the CanAm having been shaken down in the UK by Bruce and were race-ready when the short season began was key. The team comprised 2 cars and world class drivers every year. The team had a US base in Livonia, Detroit and it’s own engine program,  it’s 6 litre Chevs built by George Bartz and tuned and assembled in-house under Gary Knutsen’s supervision. Finally the team had adequate sponsorship to do things properly.

The 1968 McLaren M8 was a ‘clean sheet’ design built from the learnings of the M6; the M8B, M8D and M8F works cars of 1969/70/71 evolutions of the M8A with sufficient change to ‘stay ahead of the pack’.

The dominance of McLaren was enhanced by ex-works cars passing into the hands of the best drivers at the end of each season and customer cars available to whoever wanted one; last years works-car became this years customer car, such bolides built by Trojan Industries so the works team didn’t have to worry about pesky customers! By the end of 1968 at least, Lola’s dominance in terms of grid numbers was over.

Such was the challenge Lola, Chaparral, John Surtees, Dan Gurney and the other best team owners faced.

Eric Broadley updated the T70 into the Mk3B for 1967, Surtees and Donohue were 3rd and 4th in the Championship with John taking a win at Las Vegas at the seasons end.

bridge start

Bridghampton September 1967 start; the McLaren M6A’s of McLaren and Hulme are in front of this group headed by #7 Surtees and #52 Revson both in Lola T70 Mk3B Chevs, #11 Motchenbacher’s T70 Chev, Jim Halls winged Chaparral 2G Chev clear. Hulme won. (Dave Friedman Collection)

lola ts

John Surtees much developed Lola T160/TS Chev at Bridghampton, September 1968. DNF having qualified 10th. (unattributed)

The T160, Lola’s new car for 1968 was in essence a development of the T70. Surtees only raced in several rounds of the championship. Sam Posey was the best placed Lola T160 driver, finishing 9th in the drivers championship.

la times 1

Surtees in his modified Lola T160/TS Chev. ‘LA Times GP’, Riverside, 27 October 1968. DNF water pump in the race won by McLaren’s M8A Chev. (Dave Friedman Collection)

For Surtees it was time to do his own thing, his first customer car was the Surtees  TS5 F5000 car for 1969, in terms of the Can Am he jumped ‘out of the fat and into the flames’ Jim Hall’s 1969 Chaparral 2H not his best car. Surtees did get a taste of the M8 McLaren when Hall realised he had built a ‘clunker’ and bought an M12 customer car for John to drive whilst the team sorted the 2H, Surtees revelling in the car on the few occasions he raced it!

la times 2

Surtees T160 at Riverside from the rear. Top left Surtees in the pits, right Mark Donohue talking with his crew. (Dave Friedman Collection)

Commercially for Broadley the appointment of Carl Haas as the Lola importer in 1967 was an astute move and provided the base for both firms success for decades with Haas having some of the attributes above to take on the papaya McLarens in the short term.

chuck

Chuck Parsons in Carl Haas ‘factory’ Lola T163 Chev at Bridghampton on 14 September 1969. 7th in the race won by Hulme’s McLaren M8B Chev. (unattributed)

In 1969 Chuck Parsons proved the Lola T163 was not too bad a car, he finished 3rd in the points chase that year whilst the Chaparral was not a threat Porsche first appeared with the 917PA, the CanAm variant of its dominant in 1970 and 1971 endurance racer.

chap 2 j

Painting depicting Vic Elford’s Chaparral 2J Chev leading Peter Revson’s Lola T220/2 during 1970. (unattributed)

1970 was one of the great years of the CanAm, the sound conservative engineering of the McLaren M8D juxtaposed by Jim Halls outrageous Chaparral 2J Chev, one of the most stunning, original, innovative, epic racing cars ever built. The 2 stroke engines which created the vacuum for its ground effects were its weak link and the cause of too many retirements but the car was stunningly fast whilst it lasted in Jackie Stewart’s and Vic Elfords hands.

‘The Establishment’ had it banned at the end of the season of course; ‘movable aerodynamic devices illegal’ but the CanAm lost its soul and it’s ‘unlimited nature’ in making that decision, Hall telling the organisers to ‘go jam it’ and with it the CanAm lost its biggest draw if not its most successful team.

revson

Peter Revson destroyed his Lola T220 Chev after a 180mph tyre blowout at Road Atlanta in 1970. He raced a new 10 inch longer wheelbase car, 98 inches, the T222 for the rest of the season. Here at Watkins Glen he was 3rd. (Automobile Year)

Haas convinced Eric Broadley to design a new Lola for the 1970 season and signed Peter Revson, just peaking as a world class driver, to get the best from it.

The gorgeous, swoopy T220 was the result. The car had a very short 88 inch wheelbase which made it difficult to drive, a tyre failure at 180mph at Road Atlanta destroyed the car, but fortunately not Revson. It was a blessing in disguise as the replacement T222 had an additional 10 inches added to its wheelbase and made it a much more competitive car.

t220

Revson’s T220 at Road Atlanta and destroyed that weekend. ‘Fence’ an addition from original body spec. (Jim Hayes)

Having said that the T220 was fast if unreliable; Revvie qualified it 2nd at Road America, 3rd at Mid Ohio and 4th at Watkins Glen and Mosport, his best finish 2nd to Hulme at Mid Ohio.

With the longer wheelbase T222 he immediately banged the car on pole at Donnybrooke, finishing 3rd behind the 2 McLarens and qualified 3rd at both Laguna Seca and the final Riverside round for a 3rd and DNF respectively.

So, by the end of the year the Lola car/driver combination was close to the McLarens, Hulme took the 1970 title, Revson finished 6th.

Revson was off to McLaren for 1971, all Lola/Haas had to build was a better car, building on the base of the T222 and hire a driver of the required calibre.

Part 2: The Lola T260…

t260 cutaway

Lola T260 Chev cutaway. (Tom Strongman)

Having had a taste of the Can Am in 1970 and earlier years Jackie Stewart was keen to return, the professionalism of the Carl Haas team and Lola, a marque familiar to him having raced a T90 successfully at Indy together with Graham Hill in 1966 had appeal. He could fit the series into his 1971 F1 program with Tyrrell, or so he thought. Click here for an article on the Lola T90 and the 1966 Indy 500;

https://primotipo.com/2015/06/12/graham-hills-american-red-ball-spl-lola-t90-ford-indy-winner-1966-2/

Lola’s mount for Stewart was designated the the T260, the car was designed by Bob Marston with Eric Broadley’s guidance.

Lola Heritage; ‘The chassis was a…Lola full monocoque in L72 and NS4 light alloys bonded and riveted together with the fuel bags in either side of the tub with a total capacity of 60 gallons. The oil tank was contained in the rear of the left-hand fuel section. The rear of the monocoque extended to the back of the engine which was sandwiched between two bulkheads, a bell-housing supported the gearbox and absorbed suspension loads.

Cooling was via two brass-finned Serck radiators mounted behind the driver’s shoulder level and fed by two large NACA ducts on the top of the bodywork, the radiators vented through large louvres in the rear bodywork. Two oil coolers were mounted behind the water radiators and used the same ducts, an additional transmission cooler lay flat over the gearbox.

The bodywork was evolved following extensive tests in the Specialised Mouldings wind tunnel and featured a short, bluff nosecone with gauze-covered holes on the top to equalise pressure. At the base of the nose were two air ducts to feed air to the front discs, at the rear two ram pipes on the top of the rear body section collected the cooling air for the rear discs’.

Pete Lyons described the cars aerodynamic approach ‘The T260…was built to an aerodynamic theory already embodied in a few small-bore sports cars of the day. The intent was a shape that would bullet through the air on the straights and also remain stable as the car’s pitch attitude, ride height and positioning behind other cars changed everywhere else. In particular…a more conventional downforce-producing wedge nose, such as McLaren’s…could abruptly change from downforce to lift under certain conditions…’

t 260 aero

CAD sketch showing the T260 aero treatment. (unattributed)

The front suspension on the T260 comprised unequal length wishbones, the upper ones were triangulated to form bell-cranks that operated Bilstein dampers and coil springs which lay almost horizontally across the front of the tub. The unusual spring-medium location freed space for the front brakes to be mounted inboard. Eric Broadley’s intention was to reduce the unsprung weight of the front wheels by moving the brakes inboard from their conventional hub location. This would have permitted the lighter wheel assemblies to ride better over the often bumpy CanAm circuits. Jackie Stewart was adamantly opposed to inboard brakes after the death of his close friend Jochen Rindt due to the failure of an inboard-brake driveshaft on his GP Lotus 72 at Monza in September 1970. Conventional outboard brake mountings were used on the finalized T260 instead.

A tangent is the fact that later JYS was comfortable enough with Engineer Derek Gardner’s approach to inboard front brakes, his 1973 Championship winning Tyrrell 006 being so equipped.

front

T260, Stewart up, Road America. Shot included to show the unusual location, for the time, of the spring/shocks referred to in the text. Graviner fire extinguished ‘bomb clear in shot. Chassis aluminium full monocoque. (Jim Buell)

Rack and pinion steering was ahead of the front suspension.

Lola Heritage; ‘At the rear there was a short top link and a long radius arm attaching to the front engine bulkhead, a lower member extended rearwards to a cross-member bolted to the rear face of the gearbox. The springs and dampers fixed to the lower member and transmitted their load to tubular outriggers on the gearbox bell-housing.

Lola-made centre-lock, peg-drive magnesium wheels were fitted, their diameter 15 inches with 10.5 inch front and 17 inch wide rear Goodyears’. The battery was mounted in the nose and a Graviner onboard fire extinguisher was fitted behind the dashboard’.

Two cars were built for Haas, chassis ‘HU1’ was Stewart’s race chassis, ‘HU2’ was an unused spare  in 1971.

The engine was a 496 cu in (8.1 litres) V8 Chevrolet tuned by George Foltz, it produced circa 700 bhp and 618 lb-ft of torque, Lucas fuel injection was fitted with a Scintilla Vertex magneto and a Hewland LG600 4-speed gearbox transmitted the power.

engine

Aluminium block 8 litre engine of the T260 at Mosport. June 1971. (Jerry Bendl Collection/The Roaring Season)

lola t260

(Werner Buhrer)

gardenr back

Frank Gardner testing the Lola T260 at Silverstone, note how far forward the rear wing is in relation to shots later in 1971. (LAT)

When completed the car was tested by Lola racer/tester/development engineer Frank Gardner who was also turning his mind and skills into getting more speed from Lola’s F5000 T190/2, no doubt the F5000 was a ‘kiddy car’ compared to its 8 litre big brother!

Stewart drove the car in a rain soaked run at Silverstone prior to the cars shipping to canada for the season opening CanAm round at Mosport, Canada.

gardner side

Gardner in ‘HU1’ at Silverstone, the shortness of the car and different to anything else in the CanAm aero-treatment clear in this shot. (unattributed)

stewart sikverstone

Ropey shot of Stewart sheltering from the Silverstone weather during his brief drive of the T260 prior to shipment to North America, June 1971. (Sutton Images)

Other 1971 CanAm Contenders…

hulme and stewart

Denny Hume and Jackie Stewart at Mid Ohio 1971. Stewart in his T260 office. (Ron Laymon)

road mclaren

Denny Hulme, McLaren M8F Chev, Road America, August 1971. DNF engine. Engine 494cid Reynolds aluminium block Chev, circa 740bhp@6400rpm. (Jim Buell)

In reality the likely outright contenders in 1971 were the factory McLaren M8F’s, Stewart’s Lola T260, Jackie Oliver’s Shadow Mk2 Chev was a contender, designer Peter Bryant had plenty of experience by 1971.

road shadow

Jackie Olivers Shadow Mk2 Chev, Road America 1971. 12th in the race. (Jim Buell)

Jo Siffert’s Porsche 917/10 was gathering valuable data for a serious tilt in 1972, in exceptional circumstances (the wet) it was a contender as were a number of the best privateers in either ex-works or carefully developed M8’s; Lothar Motschenbacher, Vic Elford and Tony Adamowicz the most likely.

road pors

Siffert’s Porsche 917/10, Road America 1971. Spaceframe chassis, 5 litre Flat 12. (Jim Buell)

road revvie

Peter Revson, Jackie Oliver in the helmet and front suspension detail of a McLaren M8F in the Road America paddock, August 1971. (Jim Buell)

The detailed specification of the McLaren M8F i wrote about a while back; click on this link to read the short article; https://primotipo.com/2015/03/08/peter-revson-mclaren-m8f-chev-1971/

watkins grid

1971 Mid Ohio rolling grid. #5 Hulme, #7 Revson, #1 Stewart, #2 Jo Siffert,Porsche 917/10, #51 Dave Causey Lola T222 Chev, #54 Tony Adamowicz, McLaren M8B Chev, #88 Hiroshi Kazato ,Lola T222. (Ron Laymon)

Part 3: Racing: The 1971 CanAm Round by Round…

mosport 1

Mosport 1971 vibe, looks fantastic! (Jerry Bendl Collection/The Roaring Season)

Round 1: Mosport, Ontario Canada 13 June 1971
Stewart grabbed pole position from the works McLaren M8F’s of Denny Hulme and Peter Revson and then led the race from Hulme, an oil leak from the LG600 Hewland ‘box resulted in its seizure on lap 18.

Hulme won from Revson and Lothar Motschenbacher in one the 1970 ex-works McLaren M8D’s.

mosport 2

Pan of Stewart at Mosport shows the cars original aero treatment before ongoing modifications and experiments. Rear wing far forward and nose devoid of appendages. (Jerry Bendl Collection/The Roaring Season)

Rounds 2 and 3: St Jovite, Quebec Canada 27 June and Road Atlanta, Georgia, 11 July
The second round was at St Jovite. Stewart put the T260 on the front row next to pole sitter Hulme’s McLaren M8F. Denny led from the start but Stewart sat in second until lap 52 when Hulme, tiring from a stomach bug had to slow due to exhaustion. Stewart won the race from Denny and Revson.

st jovite

Stewart a race winner at St Jovite, here beside Hulme with Revson just behind. (Lola Heritage)

Stewart recalled in an interview with Gordon Kirby ‘St Jovite was a good win because with that car, that track was hard work! The other race where we did quite well was at Road Atlanta. We led the race then had a puncture and a whole series of other problems but still turned the fastest lap of the race, quicker than Hulme’s pole time’.  Revson won the race from Hulme and Motschenbacher.

road atlanta

Stewart had great pace at Road Atlanta, wonderful high speed shot of the short, squat, original T260. (unattributed)

watkins glen

Stewart ahead of Revson, Mario Cabral Porsche 917K and Hulme in the distance, Watkins Glen, 1971. (unattributed)

Round 4: Watkins Glen, New York, 25 July
The T260’s speed was not in doubt, it was back on pole again with Hulme and Revson right behind. Stewart got the drop putting the T260 into the lead from Revson, the Lola and McLaren diced until Stewart pitted with another puncture losing a lap while the wheel was changed.

Stewart returned to the race and began to fly setting the fastest lap but on the 56th he retired the car after detecting vibrations which proved to be a failing transmission. Revson won from Hulme and Jo Siffert in the factory Porsche 917/10.

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JYS at Watkins Glen, site of the US GP in upstate New York, it was a circuit he knew well. (LAT)

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Stewart loaded up and all ready to go in the Mid Ohio pitlane. (Terry Capps)

Round 5: Mid Ohio, 22 August
Stewart, famously a successful campaigner for better circuit safety was unhappy with the track; its surface excessively bumpy and the presence of trees and telegraph poles surrounding the course meant mistakes would be punished severely.

Much overnight work was carried out to remove some of the trees and poles and add straw bales where possible but after looking at the result Stewart declared he would ‘run but he wouldn’t race’. Stewart’s position could be appreciated after the bumpy track caused 3 rear suspension failures to the T260 during qualifying.

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Bucolic Mid Ohio paddock. Team busy this meeting, several suspension failures over the bumpy circuit. ‘Standard aero’ at this point. (Terry Capps)

Stewart qualified 3rd and was 2nd behind Revson at the end of lap 1 but the McLaren drew away as Stewart drove well within himself. On lap 72 Revson’s driveshaft universal joint failed (the same problem had sidelined Denny Hulme) and Stewart took the lead and race win from Siffert’s Porsche and Tony Adamowicz’ ’69 ex-works McLaren M8B Chev.

back

Mid Ohio paddock this time a butt shot. Neat brackets to support beefy exhausts and lights, black ducts are cooling for inboard discs located beside the Hewland ‘box. Note also ducts/louvres on the rear of the bodywork to exhaust hot air. (Terry Capps)

From this point on the continual development of the McLarens told whilst the Lola effort didn’t improve enough. McLaren were a well drilled team and both drivers were  experienced campaigners with whatever changes needing to be made could be done quickly in their Livonia, Detroit workshop or back at Colnbrook if necessary.

Whilst the T260 was effectively a works effort run by the marques US importer, Lola were at their core a manufacturer of customer racing cars with many customers, not a race team with only one focus.

stew m10b

Included in JYS program for 1971 was the Questor Grand Prix at Ontario Speedway in March. He was 2nd in his Tyrrell to Mario Andretti’s Ferrari 312B…but here Jackie is putting in a few laps in AJ Foyts McLaren M10B Chev. His only F5000 drive?? (Getty Images)

Jackie Stewart on driving the T26o and stresses of two major campaigns, F1 with Tyrrell and the CanAm Lola in 1971…

Stewart related to Gordon Kirby and Adam Cooper in separate MotorSport magazine interview’s; ‘There were no wind tunnels in those days and Eric (Broadley) would suddenly arrive and under his arm was a new front wing. There was one we called ‘the cowcatcher’. It was hung out front of the car and what it was doing i just don’t know’

‘The car was very short wheelbase and very difficult to drive. In comparison to the McLarens, (Stewart was approached to drive for them in 1972 and actually signed to do so but withdrew when the extent of his health problems were clear) the car was just a monster to drive and we were just trying to keep up’.

‘I tested the McLaren and it was just like a passenger car compared to the incredibly nervous, pointy, short wheelbase Lola where you were a millisecond from an accident all the time.’

Stewart said the Lola T260 was the most physically demanding car he raced in his career ‘On the very fast circuits like Riverside it was awfully tricky because you never knew where you were going’. In order to make up for its shortcomings ‘I sweated more. It was just a difficult car to drive. There are some cars which are easy to drive and others not and that was one of the ones that was not’.

In a contest for the worst car he ever drove; ‘The Lola T260 CanAm car would probably make that one…the H16 BRM runs it a close second’.

The main problem was dire understeer in addition to ultimate twitchiness at speed. The Lola’s blunt nose was dotted with mesh covered holes through which the underbody air could pass. In theory this helped provide some downforce. In its initial guise the shape of the front didn’t seem to have any obvious way of providing grip. Broadley deliberately opted not to have a fashionable chisel nose. But the lack of downforce at the front was borne out by the position of the giant rear , which was usually far forward, just behind the injection trumpets  in an attempt to achieve some sort of balance.

A combination of racing around the world in 2 series and lots of promotional work gave Stewart mononucleosis. ‘I was flying back and forth from Europe to do F1, i won the world championship that year and 2 CanAm races, but i also got mononucleosis (glandular fever), a really debilitating disease that took your energy away. You couldn’t sleep and yet you were overly tired. So it was a tough year, a really exhausting year’.

stew montjuic

Stewart racing his Tyrrell 001 Ford to victory in the Spanish GP, Montjuic Park, Barcelona on 18 April. He took 6 wins in 1971 and his second drivers title. (unattributed)

Its interesting to reflect on Jackie’s comments on the differences between the two cars; in fact both the T260, which retained the same wheelbase as the T222 and the ’71 McLaren M8F had 98 inch wheelbases.

The front/rear track of the Lola was 58 inches, of the M8F 60/57.75 inches. The overall length of the Lola was 139 inches compared with the much longer M8F’s 167 inches.

The aero treatment was radically different of course, a lack of downforce something the team chased progressively throughout the season.

road america

Stewart in the T260 at Road America and trying a different aero configuration comprising; a new profile ‘clip’ on the lower nose at the cars front and ‘McLarenesque’ wing and integrated mounts, wing now much further back than the original. (Jim Buell)

Round 6: Road America, Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, 29 August
Stewart was third fastest in qualifying but his engine, also used at Mid-Ohio was tired.

A new engine was fitted for the race but high temperatures during warm-up were hoped to be vapour lock in the cooling system.

road am 1

Stewart ‘ready to rock’ at Road America and a close-up of the configuration pictured above. (Jim Buell)

Stewart ran second early on but after 10 laps the engine was smoking, Stewart parked it. Later examination showed a dropped cylinder liner was responsible for the high engine temperatures.

Revson won from Siffert and Vic Elford’s McLaren M8E Chev.

stew road am

Stewart T260 Road America, note that in this shot he is running the ‘original’ nose and rear wing setup. (Carl Knopp)

Round 7: Donnybrooke, Minnesota
T260 had revised rear suspension but the McLarens were continually being developed as well, Stewart’s 3rd fastest time 2 seconds adrift of the factory M8F’s.

Stewart got away well and led for 2 laps until Revson found a way past, Hulme was unable to pass Jackie as the McLaren was losing grip in the Lola’s slipstream. The positions remained until lap 22 when Stewart felt something amiss and pitted, nothing could be found, he resumed in 10th a lap and a half down.

The Scot raced the T260 back to 4th but another puncture saw Stewart back in the pits, the T260 finished 6th, two laps down. Revson again won from Hulme and Gregg Young’s McLaren M8D/E Chev 3rd.

edmonton

Stewart about to load up on the wet Edmonton grid, September 1971. #11 is Motchenbacher’s McLaren M8D . See another variation of the T260 nose, the front ‘clip on’ less bluff than the original and more ‘scooped’. Rear wing mounted back. (Jerry Bendl Collection/The Roaring Season)

Round 8: Edmonton, Alberta Canada, 26 September
The T260 featured a revised nose shape designed to give more downforce, the rear wing was moved back to balance the new nose.

Stewart qualified 3rd again. Jackie had a great start on the wet track and led. The T260 was handling well in the rain, the Scot extended his lead over Jackie Oliver’s Shadow and Hulme’s McLaren. Stewart was still leading at half distance but a trip onto the grass when lapping Motschenbacher’s M8D lost the Lola’s handling balance.

Gradually Hulme closed the gap and he suddenly found himself in the lead with 13 laps remaining, the deteriorating handling caught Stewart out and he spun. The T260 resumed in second but with it’s competitiveness lost Stewart settled for a safe 2nd. Jackie Oliver finally got the Shadow Mk2 into the points in 3rd.

cow catcher

Stewart runs the ‘cow catcher’ set up at Laguna Seca. In search of downforce or what! Far forward wing and much larger rear wing to balance things up. (Tony Ferrari)

Round 9: Laguna Seca, California, 17 October
At Laguna Seca the T260 had lost its high downforce nose from Edmonton and now featured a huge, front ‘cow-catcher’ wing projecting out in front of the nosecone.

Stewart managed 4th on the grid behind the McLarens and David Hobbs in the Ti22 Chev.

Stewart soon passed Hobbs, David raced the Carl Haas ‘factory’ Lola T310 in 1972, and after 10 laps passed Hulme who had some broken valve springs.

Revson seemed secure 25 seconds ahead of Stewart but a collision with a backmarker required a pit stop to secure a loose door. Stewart was now 9 seconds behind. Revson started to pull away again but with 20 laps to go Revvies engine lost power, he nursed it over the remaining laps but with 2 to go the M8F was puffing blue smoke.

He drove the last two laps cautiously to win and but Stewart who took the chequered flag as Revson had been shown a black flag, Revson claimed he hadn’t seen it.

The Carl Haas team protested Revson and the results were pending for some hours but eventually Revson got the win but received a $250 fine. Hulme was 3rd.

corkscrew

Stewart ahead of David Hobbs Ti22 Chev, Jackie Oliver Shadow Mk2 Chev, another unidentified car with Jo Siffert Porsche 917/10 at rear. Corkscrew, Laguna. (Hal Amarantes)

riverside

riverside 2

Stewart at Riverside, again with the ‘cow-catcher’ aero setup. Side on profile shot gives an idea of just how far forward the front wing was and how big the rear one was! Lola T260 Chev. (MP Hewitt)

Round 10: Riverside, California, 31 October
The series final round was at Riverside on October 30, only 3 1/2 short months since the series commenced in mid-June.

Stewart again qualified 3rd, the T260 now having bigger sideplates on its rear wing.

Hulme took the lead at the start but Stewart got up to 2nd as Revson, looking for points to clinch the Championship didn’t make it difficult. Unable to challenge Hulme Stewart was running happily in second until a piston failed in the big aluminium Chevy on lap 27.

Hulme won from Revson and Howden Ganley in the BRM P167 Chev.

The end of the 1971 Can-Am Championship resulted in Peter Revson as champion with 5 wins to Revsons 3, Stewart finished an honourable third to the two McLarens…

As Lola Heritage puts it ‘He had been their only consistent competitor over the ten rounds and there was a certain ‘what may have been’ feeling over the whole series, if only reliability had been better and punctures had been less’.

In addition to that its a shame the car hadn’t been finished earlier and tested extensively at Goodwood and Silverstone prior to crossing the Atlantic, but it wasn’t and the dominant McLaren’s reaped the rewards.

t310 front

David Hobbs in the Watkins Glen pits 1972. Lola T310 Chev. (unattributed)

For 1972 Lola again contested the championship with a new car, the T310, McLaren built a new car, the M20 Chev to take on the pride of Stuttgart, but the mighty Porsche 917/10 was battle ready in the hands of the Penske Team and Mark Donohue in a way the 1971 Lola/Carl Haas/Stewart combination were not…

t 310 watkins

David Hobbs lola T310 Chev 4th ahead of Jackie Olivers Shadow Mk3 Chev DNF and the dominant Porsche 917/10 turbo of George Follmer 4th. Hulme won this round in an M20 McLaren. Watkins Glen 1972. (unattributed)

1971 CanAm Season Footage…

Etcetera…

dimensions

Bibliography…

Lola Heritage, ‘MotorSport’ October 2000 article by Adam Cooper and December 2013 article by Gordon Kirby, Automobile Year 19, ‘CanAm’ Pete Lyons

Photo Credits…

Lola Heritage, Ron Laymon, Getty Images, LAT, Jerry Bendl Collection/The Roaring Season, Automobile Year, Jim Hayes, Tom Strongman cutaway drawing, Carl Knopp, Jim Buell, Terry Capps, Hal Amarantes, Tony Ferrari, MP Hewitt

Tailpiece…

Turn in Biiitch!

bitch

Stewart Lola T260, Road America 1971. (Jim Buell)

Finito…

 

 

taffy

(Archie Smith)

Taffy von Trips settles himself into his F2 Ferrari Dino 156 ‘0008’ on the grid of the 1960 Italian Grand Prix, Monza, September 6…

The cars designer, Carlo Chiti looks on. Click on the link below to my article, i have converted a 100 word ‘quickie’ on a vista of Monaco in 1960 into a feature on a significant Ferrari thanks to a tangent introduced by reader Grant Perkins for reasons which are clear in the text.

https://primotipo.com/2015/10/04/monaco-panorama-1958/

This car, Ferrari Dino 246P/156 ‘0008’ is the Scuderia’s first mid-engined car.

severi

Ferrari factory test driver Martino Severi drives the brand new, mid-engined 246P ‘0008’ on 22 May 1960 at Modena. Ginther and Hill also drove the car that day. Its a week before its Monaco GP debut. Not as gorgeous as it became in Fantuzzi bodied 1961 156 form but luvverly all the same. (unattributed)

Dino 246P ‘0008’s evolution from 2.5 litre mid-engined GP prototype in Ginther’s hands at Monaco 1960 to 1.5 litre Dino 156 Syracuse 1961 GP winner for Giancarlo Baghetti within 12 months is an interesting story…

richie

Richie Ginther at Monaco 1960 for his, and Ferrari Dino 246P ‘0008’s Grand Prix debut. (unattributed)

Photo Credits…

Archie Smith

clark

Rod MacKenzie’s moody, foreboding, evocative image of Jim Clark’s Lotus 49 at Longford in 1968 is one of my favourites…

Clark is exiting Newry Corner on the run towards the ‘Flying Mile’. He started from pole, winning 100 bottles of champagne in the process and the Sunday race in beautiful weather but the clouds opened on Monday morning for the Tasman Championship event, ‘The South Pacific Trophy’.

Star of the show was Piers Courage who drove a gutsy, skilful race in the most challenging, treacherous conditions to win the event in his little F2 McLaren M4A FVA ahead of the big Tasman 2.5’s of his close competitors. Pier’s car was self run, his performances in it that summer reignited his career.

courage

Piers Courage in his McLaren M4A F2 car, Newry Corner, Longford 1968. Power was not all on this fast circuit in such wet conditions, but the plucky Brit was giving away at least 130bhp to his 2.5 litre V8 powered opponents. (Rod MacKenzie)

Pedro Rodriguez and Frank Gardner were second and third in BRM P261 2.1 V8 and Brabham BT23D Alfa 2.5 V8 respectively. Clark was fifth in his Ford Cosworth DFW engined Lotus 49, the 2.5 litre variant of the epochal 3 litre DFV GP engine.

The conditions were so bad various drivers with unsuitable tyres elected not to start having driven some ‘sighting laps’, Keven Bartlett recounted his experience in the Alec Mildren Racing Brabham BT11A Climax; ‘I did two exploratory laps and the old BT11 couldn’t find traction anywhere. I had an absolutely terrifying 4th gear 720 degree spin across the Short Bridge, the one after the Viaduct, missing all the obstacles at the tracks edge. After exiting Pub and in a straight line i did a 360 degree loop. She nearly escaped me over the rail line on the way to Long Bridge. Out of Newry and up the hill to the straight slithering along with no touch felt between me and the bitumen, so i suppose at that moment to do another lap at a very reduced speed then pit’.

long

‘What are we going to do boys?!’ Drivers considering their options before the race, the pouring rain exacerabated by drains beside the track which couldn’t cope with the deluge; Clark facing us, Hill’s distinctive helmet clear. Courage with his back to us in helmet, Gardner’s lanky frame partly in shot to the right. Amon in the ‘Firestone’ suit, Harvey? at left with head down (oldracephotos.com)

‘Once back in the tent Alec, Frank (Gardner) Denny (Hulme Brabham BT23 FVA F2) and i had a talk about the tyres that Denny and i had and after trying to come up with a better tread pattern, such as the ones fitted to Franks car (Brabham BT23D Alfa) but with no result. It was agreed that Denny and i shouldn’t risk a start. I was happy with the call and Leo (Geoghegan Lotus 39 Repco) followed suit. Most of the top guys had the latest Firestone, Dunlop or Goodyear wets but none were available to suit the BT11’s. I consoled myself with the fact that if the new world champion (Hulme) didn’t like the risk i certainly shouldn’t!’

I’ll get around to writing about that weekend soon in full, in the meantime enjoy these images of that difficult race on the most dangerous and majestic of Australian circuits.

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A very happy but cold and soggy Piers Courage, with wife Sally after his Longford ’68 win. It was a might fine drive which is still remembered by those fortunate enough to see it. (oldracephotos.com)

Photo and Other Credits…

Roderick MacKenzie Collection;  http://www.racephotoaustralia.com/

oldracephotos.com;  http://www.oldracephotos.com/content/home/

The Nostalgia Forum/Ellis French/Rod MacKenzie and Kevin Bartlett

 

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(Terry Marshall/The Roaring Season)

Terry Marshall’s shots capture the zesty, attacking style which made Keke Rosberg a crowd favourite throughout his career. Here in his Chevron B39 Ford at Pukekohe during the New Zealand Grand Prix on January 7 1978…

The Kiwi’s changed their national formula from F5000 to Formula Atlantic/Pacific from the 1977 International Series whilst we Aussies persevered with the big V8’s.

Rosberg won the 1977 Series in a Fred Opert Chevron B34 from American Tom Gloy in a Tui BH2 and Aussie Grovewood Award Winner, Bruce Allison’s Ralt RT1.

He returned again in an Opert Chevron B39 in 1978 and took that championship as well; 6 wins of 10 races, 1 at Bay Park, both NZ GP rounds at Pukekohe and 1 apiece at Manfield, Teretonga and Wigram.

Aussie ex-F1 driver Larry Perkins was 2nd in a ‘Scuderia Veloce’ Ralt RT1, Bobby Rahal was 3rd in the other Opert Chevron entry and Danny Sullivan 4th in a ‘March Cars’ March 77B.

The fields were of great depth and included Kiwi Internationals Ken Smith March 76B, Brett Riley March 77B, Steve Millen Chevron B42 and David McMillan Ralt RT1.

Later in 1978 Rosberg contested many European F2 rounds in another Opert Chevron, a B42 Hart 420R 2 litre and critically his Grand Prix career commenced…

His first race was the South African Grand Prix in a Theodore TR01 Ford on March 4, he qualified 24th of 30 entrants and retired with a range of maladies.

The car was a clunker (an F2 Ralt acquired by Yip into which a Ford Cosworth DFV was bolted) with many non-prequalifications to follow later in the season, but things came together nicely a fortnight after Kyalami for his first F1 win, a stunning wet weather drive in the non-championship ‘BRDC International Trophy’ at Silverstone on 19 March.

Whilst many fell off in the streaming conditions Keke drove a fast, consistent race to win from from Emerson Fittipaldi in one of his own Fittipaldi F5A Ford’s and Tony Trimmer, McLaren M23 Ford. The field included Peterson, Andretti, Ickx, Hunt, Regazzoni, Lauda, Depailler, Mass and Arnoux.

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Rosberg winning the ‘International trophy’ at Silverstone in March 1978. Theodore TR01 Ford. (unattributed)

Later in the season he had some drives in Wolfs’ WR3 and WR4 acquired by Teddy Yip given the lack of pace of their own Theodore. 10th in the German GP at Hockenheim in one of these cars was his best result of the year.

He also drove an ATS Ford in 5 events and whilst still not a competitive car he showed what he could do, and the rest as they say is history, Keke achieved ‘ a toehold in F1’ with Fittipaldi in 1980!

For sure his Antipodean Formula Pacific wins against strong competition enhanced his reputation by beating his peers in equivalent cars and made him ‘race fit’ by the time he returned to Europe.

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Rosberg on the Wigram grid, 29 January 1978. Chevron B39. (Terry Marshall/The Roaring Season)

Terry Marshall said of this shot; ‘Keke Rosberg what a star, always goofing around. Here on the grid at Wigram. He had just pulled me down into the cockpit to tell me if i came to Germany with him he would jack me up a job as a magazine photographer there. I had a lovely wife and two kids, so i had to say no.’

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Rosberg, Chevron B39 Ford, Bay Park, NZ. 2 January 1978. 1st place. (Terry Marshall/ The Roaring Season)

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Rosberg relaxing in the Teretonga paddock, 22 January 1978. ‘Motoring News’ maybe?! Beautiful all enveloping body of the B39 helped it slip thru the air nicely. (Kevin Thomson Collection/The Roaring Season)

Chevron B39 Ford and Formula Atlantic/Pacific…

The Chevron B39 was Derek Bennett’s 1977 Formula Atlantic car, 11 were built, Keke’s Fred Opert Racing (the US importer of the cars) chassis was # ’39-77-08′.

Typical of the period, we are just before the ‘ground effects’ era remember, the car used an aluminium monocoque chassis, independent front suspension with upper and lower wishbones and coil spring/Koni shocks. Adjustable roll bars were fitted front and rear. Rear suspension comprised a single upper link, two lower links, two radius rods for lateral location, and coil spring/Koni shocks.

Steering was rack and pinion and brakes disc all round, inboard at the rear beside the ubiquitous Hewland 5 speed FT200 transaxle.

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Rosberg’s B39 being prepared for the Bay Park round of the series on January 2 1978. (Mike Feisst Collection/The Roaring Season)

The engine was the Ford Cosworth BDA, originally homologated for rally use in Ford’s Escort RS1600 to replace the ageing Lotus Twin Cam, which was also based on a Ford block. Other engines were eligible for Formula Atlantic, the class ‘morphed’ out of the SCCA’s 1600 Formula B which commenced in 1965, but the BDA soon became the engine of choice. Formula Atlantic/Pacific soon became a truly global class which was contested in North America, UK, Australasia and South Africa.

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Ford Cosworth BDA engine cutaway. Engine designed by Mike Hall, the original 1969 variant spawned engines successful in Rallies, F2, F Atlantic/Pacific and much more. (unattributed)

The ‘BDA’ had many variants, all were successful, the Formula Atlantic kit was called the ‘BDD’ and like many of the ‘BDA’s was based on the Ford Cortina/Formula Ford ‘711M’, 5 bearing cast iron block.

The head was DOHC the 4 valves per cylinder driven by a toothed rubber belt, one of the the first race engines to do so and one of the first production engines so specified as well. The engine was fed, as mandated by the class rules, by carburettors, usually 48DCOE Webers. The 1590cc BDD developed a reliable 205bhp plus @9000 rpm, one of lifes true pleasures is to drive one of these cars powered by this engine.

Rosberg’s performances were meritorius as, arguably, the B39 was not quite as quick a car as the contemporary Ralt RT1 or March 76/77B, but the dude behind the wheel more than made up for whatever the chassis gave away.

Credits…

Terry Marshall, Kevin Thomson, Mike Feisst/The Roaring Season. Click on this link to take you into TRS, all three collections are well worth trawling through for all sots of cars.

http://www.theroaringseason.com/showthread.php?863-Photos-The-Terry-Marshall-Collection

oldracingcars.com