Posts Tagged ‘Derek Gardner’

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Jackie Stewart being largely ignored by most of the ‘snappers’ at Zandvoort during the Dutch Grand Prix weekend in 1971…

Rainer Schlegelmilch’s shot seems to be a portrait of his colleagues, Diana Burnett is the lady, the distinctive figure of Bernard Cahier is the chap in the blue cap and Goodyear jacket. It’s dry which makes it practice, the wet race was won by Ickx’ Ferrari with JYS 4th in Tyrrell 003 Ford.

I was first smitten by single-seaters upon spotting Jochen Rindt’s sensational ‘Gold Leaf’ Lotus 72 in the Automobile Year 18 ‘centrefold’ below.

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Rindt on his way to a joyless first GP win for the Lotus 72 Ford during the 1970 Dutch GP at Zandvoort, his close friend Piers Courage perished in a grisly, fiery accident during the race in a De Tomaso 505 Ford (Automobile Year)

The book came from the Camberwell Grammar School library, I was an inmate for 6 years and borrowed these annuals, they bought the latest each year, hundreds of times over the years. If truth be known I surgically removed many of the full page color shots from the books which somehow found their way onto my bedroom wall, I was skilful with a razor blade long before I could shave!

So, I was a devotee of Colin Chapman’s Lotus 56/72 side radiator, chisel nose aero approach rather than Derek Gardner’s chunky ‘sportscar nose’ alternative he pioneered in F1 with Tyrrell in ’71. That the alternative approaches worked equally well was proved by the results of practitioners of the ‘two schools’ of aerodynamic thought throughout the ‘70’s, visually though it was ‘no contest’!

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Derek Gardner and Ken Tyrrell outside the Ockham, Surrey factory in August 1971. Tyrrell Ford could be ‘002 or 3’, ‘bluff nose’ first raced at the 4 July ’71 French GP  (Klemantaski)

Gardner’s Tyrrell period was relatively short but wonderfully sweet, although 7 years is a pretty long stint with one team I guess. His first series of cars was the 1970-72 ‘001-004’, the second series the 1972-3 ‘005-6’. Both design series won Grands’ Prix and World Titles. His ’74-5 ‘007’ and ’76-7 ‘P34’ six-wheeler won Grands Prix only, no titles. I doubt there are too many of the F1 design greats who can claim such a record.

I’ve written a few Tyrrell articles, which are worth a look if you haven’t done so; one is on innovation; https://primotipo.com/2014/09/16/tyrrell-019-ford-1990-and-tyrrell-innovation/ , the other on aerodynamics; https://primotipo.com/tag/tyrrell-007-ford/

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The car pictured above is Jackie Stewart’s ‘004’, the last of Gardner’s first series of designs. It’s being prepared for the 1972 Monaco Grand Prix, ‘004’s race debut, the GP classic won by Jean-Pierre Beltoise’ BRM P160B, famously his first and last GP win was also BRM’s last. JPB’s delicacy in the wet was aided by some schmick Firestone wets but it was a great drive by any measure. Jackie was 4th in ‘004’, he was not feeling 100% shortly thereafter was diagnosed with a stomach ulcer. Francois Cevert non-classified further back in ‘002’.

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JYS practices ‘004’ at Monaco in 1972, the race was somewhat wetter! (unattributed)

The first Tyrrell, ‘001’ made its race debut in Stewart’s hands at Oulton Park in the ‘International Gold Cup’ on 22 August 1970, the car famously designed and to an extent constructed in secret in Gardner’s home garage in Parklands Avenue, Leamington! The ‘bath tub’ monocoque chassis was built to his design by Maurice Gomm’s Gomm Metal Developments, later chassis were built at Tyrrell’s famous woodyard, the base of his timber business in Ockham, Surrey. Other notable sub-contractors were Jack Knight Engineering who did much of the machining, Aeroplane and Motor who provided the centre lock magnesium alloy wheels, Laystall the stub axles, not to forget Cosworth Engineering, Hewland’s and others.

‘001’s championship debut was at Mont Tremblant, the Canadian GP on 20 September where Jackie plonked it on pole and was leading strongly before a stub axle broke on lap 32. The car was ‘match fit’ at the start of its dominant 1971 season having done vast amounts of Goodyear testing, Dunlop, Tyrrell’s hitherto tyre supplier having withdrawn from F1. Over the South African summer at Kyalami over 400 tyres were tested by the team.

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Tyrrell and Stewart during the Oulton Park International Cup weekend in August 1970 upon ‘001’s debut. In a meeting of contrasts JYS qualified poorly after the fuel metering unit failed, then had a stuck throttle during the race which was fixed, the Scot broke the lap record twice later in the race, the cars competitiveness clear from the start. John Surtees won the event on aggregate, he won the second heat in his Surtees TS9 Ford and Henri Pescarolo the first heat (his only F1 win?) in a March 711 Ford

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More shots of ‘001’ during the Oulton August weekend. The cars distinctive bodywork was Gardners work and was tested at 1/10th scale in the wind tunnel of the University of Surrey in Guildford (Getty)

Powered by the good ‘ole 3 litre Ford Cosworth DFV V8 and using the equally ubiquitous Hewland FG400 5 speed transaxle, the bolides were ‘kit cars’ of the period derided by Enzo Ferrari but  remarkably quick bits of kit!

Look back to the photo of ‘004’ chassis at Monaco above. The monocoque was made of 16 guage NS4 aluminium alloy and like ‘002’ and ‘003’ was 4 inches longer in the length of the tub and 1 1/2 inches longer in the wheelbase than the prototype ‘001’.

You can see the wide based lower one piece wishbone is mounted both to the tub and at its outer end the tubular suspension carrying frame which was first made up on a jig and then slipped over the top of the monocoque to which it was externally riveted. The upper suspension arm is a top link and locating link mounted to a bracket on the tub. Shocks are alloy bodied, double adjustable Koni’s again period typical. The simple steering column is clear, the rack made by Tyrrells.

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Tyrrell 002-4 cutaway drawing, all chassis the same design, this car is ‘003’. Specs as per text (Tony Hatton)

The vastly strong 360 degree roll bar encircled the the rear bulkhead and was both spigoted and bolted through into the monocoque. The DFV, stressed of course, was then bolted through this hoop. The forward radius rod pickups you can just see attached to the bar structure.

The rear was also a close to perfect expression of period paradigm; single top link, twin parallel lower links to better control toe than the inverted lower wishbone used for the decade before, two radius rods for fore and aft location and again coil spring/Koni dampers.

Brakes are Girling calipers, ventilated rotors front and solid rears of 10 1/2 inch diameter Goodyear tyres were used from the start of 1971.

‘004’ was completed at the end of the ’71 season as a spare car for Stewart, it was relatively lightly raced by the works, click on this link for a full, interesting article on the car which is still alive, well and historic raced; http://www.britishracecar.com/JohnDimmer-Tyrrell-004.htm

Gardner’s ‘005-006’ cars were low polar moment, very quick, nervous devices from which the aces for which they were designed, Stewart and Francois Cevert extracted ‘every ounce’ of performance in later 1972 and in 1973. Here is my short article about these cars; https://primotipo.com/2014/08/25/jackie-stewart-monaco-gp-1973-tyrrell-006-ford/

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Ken Tyrrell supervising the packing away of ‘003’ at the end of a Goodwood test session on 16 January 1972 prior to shipping the car to Argentina for the start of the 1972 season. There Jackie drove it to his first win of a season in which Emerson Fittipaldi prevailed in the gorgeous, chisel nosed ‘John Player Special’ Lotus 72 which I think is about where we came in…

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The ever thoughtful Derek Gardner in blue shirt watches ‘Emmo’ head out for some more practice prior to the ’72 Italian GP, Monza. The Brazilian won the race and title in his Lotus 72D Ford. Francois Cevert is behind DG, his car Tyrrell 002, DNF with engine failure (unattributed)

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’71 Dutch GP collage (Schlegelmilch)

Credits…

Rainer Schlegelmilch, Victor Blackman, Getty Images, Klemantaski Archive, Tony Hatton

Doug Nye ‘The History of The GP Car’, The GP Encyclopaedia

Tailpiece: Opening Dutch GP shot, uncropped, low res…

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(Schlegelmilch)

 

 

 

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Jean Alesi, Tyrrell 019 Ford DFR , French GP 1990 (Pinterest)

Tyrrell were an amazingly innovative small team. Jean Alesi here in the 1990 French Grand Prix driving Designer Harvey Postlethwaites’ ground breaking and trend-setting ‘highnose’ Tyrrell 019 Ford DFR…There were three distinct design regimes at Tyrrell. From 1970-1977, the Derek Gardner era, 1978-1988 when Maurice Phillippe was at the helm. Finally, from 1989-1998 Harvey Postlethwaite lead the design team until Tyrrells’ sale, the long established, family owned outfit morphing into ‘British American Racing’.

The Gardner and Postlethwaite periods were particularly aerodynamically innovative.

In 1971 Gardner introduced two important innovations to his Tyrrell 003, the first was the high airbox, which debuted at the Dutch Grand Prix, Matra similarly equipped. Chris Amons’ MS120 V12 also having a ‘snorkel’.

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Francois Cevert in Tyrrell 002 Ford showing the original aero treatment of that series of cars…Stewart ‘debut’ the Tyrrell Sports Car nose in this race the French GP 1971…Stewart first, Cevert second. ‘Pregnant-belly’ aero/fuel tank treatment apparent (Pinterest)

The primary effect was mild ‘supercharging’ of the incoming fuel/air mix, the secondary was aerodynamic, the simple snorkel quickly evolving into carefully sculptured rear bodywork which included the snorkel, and smoothed airflow to the rear wing, aiding downforce and allowing a marginally flatter wing setting to be used. In essence, less drag for the same downforce.

In the French Grand Prix, Stewarts’ 003 raced with a sports-car type nose, Gardners’ idea to partially mask and aid airflow around and over the front wheels of the car, the wheels/tyres being aerodynamically the least efficient part of an open-wheeler.

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Derek Gardners Tyrrell 003 Ford , Jackie Stewarts primary, championship winning mount of 1971. Engine ‘Snorkel and bluff ‘Tyrrell nose’ innovations of that year are clearly shown

The Lotus 56/72 set a trend with their wedge shaped, side radiator design, the 72 appearing in 1970. The other alternative aero approach at the time, ‘Pre-Tyrrell Nose’, was the ‘pregnant-belly front radiator approach’ of the BRM P153/160, Mclaren M14, Tyrrells 001-003 and others.

Gardner set the alternative aero trend of the 1970’s, until the advent of the Ground Effect Era, with his bluff sports nose. Look at the results of the two alternatives over that period from 1971 to 1979 when the needs of ground effect tunnels favoured the ‘chisel front wing and side radiator approach’ as against the ‘Tyrrell nose, front radiator approach’ cars of both designs were successful, perhaps the former ‘wedge/side rads’ was the more successful.

Examples of winning ‘chisel/side rad’ cars are the Lotus 72, McLaren M23, Ferrari 312T’s and of the ‘Tyrrell nose/front rad’ cars the Tyrrell 003-006 and Brabham BT42/44.

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Colin Chapmans’ Lotus 72 Ford, 1970-1975…once the Gardner designed ‘Tyrrell Nose’ appeared their were two distinct 1970’s pre Ground Effect Aero approaches teams took…the 72 ‘Wedge and side radiators’ the other

Gardner himself went to ‘chisel/side rads’ with the 1974/5 Tyrrell 007 driven by Jody Scheckter and Patrick Depailler, and back to the ‘Tyrrell nose’ for his stunning, outrageous P34 six-wheeler…

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Jody Scheckter and Derek Gardner with P34 in 1976…Jody was not a fan despite his Swedish GP win and left the team for Wolf Racing for 1977, and a conventional, successful car, the Wolf WR1 Ford designed by Harvey Postlethwaite (Pinterest)

Both models were Grand Prix winners, the P34 once only, in Scheckters hands in Sweden in 1976.

Gardner was recruited by Tyrrell from Ferguson Research where he worked on advanced 4wheel-drive systems used on the  Matra MS84 Ford, 4WD F1 car of 1969. That car used Ferguson componentry. The Matra, as were the other 4WD cars developed by Cosworth and Mclaren, was unsuccesful, wings and tyre polymer chemistry providing  grip more simply than 4WD technology of the day could.

But Ken Tyrrell was impressed and recruited Gardner to build the first Tyrrell 001, secretly in 1970.

By the mid-70’s the challenge of the aluminium monocoque/Ford Cosworth DFV/Hewland FG400 gearbox brigade, ‘The Garagistes’, in Enzo Ferraris’ words, was how to beat the similarly equipped opposition?

Gardners audacious approach was aerodynamic in having 4 small front wheels which could be faired behind his Tyrrell nose, creating greater straight line speed whilst losing no mechanical grip from his tiny, Goodyear shod wheels. Increased braking area provided by the four small discs was a further advantage. There were mechanical challenges making the package work but the cars were competitive in both Jody Scheckter and Patrick Depaillers’ hands in 1976, less so in 1977 when Goodyear were not so interested in developing special tyres for just one team.

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Derek Gardners outrageous, successful Tyrrell Ford P34 six-wheeler of 1976/7

Then the FIA banned 6 wheelers and that was that, March and Williams had been toying with 4 rear wheels…

Scheckter jumped ship to Walter Wolfs’ new Team in 1977 and was a race-winner in the Harvey Postlethwaite designed cars. Harvey, a Doctor of Engineering, had his motor racing start with March, modifying Lord Heskeths, James Hunt driven customer March 731. He designed the Hesketh 308 in which James Hunt won his first GP and came to Tyrrell in 1988 after two stints at Ferrari including design of the 1982 and 1983 Constructors Championship winning 126C2.

Postlethwaite was joined at Tyrrell by aerodynamicist Jean Claude Migeot, together they evolved their competitive 1989 018 into the ground-breaking 019, the car which set the aerodynamic trend until the present.

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Dr Harvey Postlethwaite during his very successful Ferrari period (L’Unita)

The car was conventional in using a carbonfibre monocoque chassis, wishbone and pushrod suspension front and rear, and Ford Cosworth 3.5 litre DFR V8 / Hewland six-speed transmission but utterly radical in its aero approach.

Contemporaray practice was to use a flat, steppped chassis undertray with a large diffuser producing downforce through the generation of low pressure under the car.

‘P and M’ realised this approach was compromised by the low nose at the front of the car, the wings diverting air sideways and upwards reducing the amount of air passing under the car. The generation of low pressure relies on increasing the speed of the air passing under the car in relation to the air passing over and around it.

In simple terms , the more air that can be drawn under the car, the faster the air will have to be moving, and the faster the air is moving the lower the pressure and greater the downforce.

By raising the nose-cone Postlethwaite increased the volume of air that was able to pass under the car…whilst keeping the wings themselves close to the ground where they work best with the distinctive, inverted V , anhedral front profile.

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The car was not that successful in terms of 1990 results, Alesi achieving sixth at San Marino and second in Monaco but a trend was set which most teams followed quickly…and principles which prevail today.

Tyrrell innovation continued with aerodynamically shaped wishbones in 1996 and the ugly but effective ‘X-Wings’ in 1997, on fast circuits two additional wings installed either side of the cockpit.

Postlethwaite stayed with the team until it was sold by Ken Tyrrell to British American Tobacco at the end of 1997 and died suddenly of a heart attack whilst testing the Postlethwaite designed, Dallara built, in house Honda at Catalunya in April 1999 aged 55.

Ken Tyrrell died in August 2001, and Derek Gardner in January 2011, his post Tyrrell career was as Director of Engineering and Research at the Borg Warner clutch company.

 


 

 

Etcetera…Tyrrell 003 1971/2

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Jackie Stewart, German GP, Nurburgring 1972. Tyrrell 003 Ford. Stewart collided with Clay Regazzoni in this race won by the Ickx Ferrari 312B2, so DNF (Pinterest)

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Etcetera…Tyrrell P34 1976/7

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Derek Gardners original schematic of the essential elements of the Project 34 dated August 1974. Dimensions of the car as raced very close to this drawing

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Patrick Depailler (2nd) in the P34 ahead of Chris Amon (DNF) and Gunnar Nilsson (DNF), Ensign N176 Ford and Lotus 77 Ford respectively. Scheckter won this race, the 1976 Swedish GP in the sister P34. The shot is a ‘compare and contrast’ with conventional (aluminium monocoque/Ford DFV/Hewland gearbox) cars of the day. Note how well faired the small 10 inch wheels are by the ‘Tyrrell Nose’ (Sutton)

 

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Scheckter second around the twists and turns of Monaco in 1976, the Lauda Ferrari 312T victorious. Depailler third in the sister car…plenty of ‘turn in’ and strong brakes on this demanding course (Pinterest)

 

Etcetera…Tyrrell 019 1990

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Wonderful 1990 Adelaide East Terrace shot of Jean Alesis’ Tyrrell 019 shows off its aerodynamic secrets…eighth in the AGP race won by Nelson Piquets Benetton Ford (Stupix)

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Jean Alesi (3rd) and Gerhard Berger (5th)Monaco 1990, the high-nose Tyrrell 019 a contrast with the orthodoxy of the day, McLaren MP4/5B Honda. Ayrton Senna won the race in the other McLaren (Pinterest)

 

Etcetera…Tyrrell Ford 025 1997

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Jos Verstappen in Postlethwaites 1997 ‘X-Wing’ Tyrrell Ford ED4 3.5 V8 025. San Marino GP 1997…evolution of Harveys ‘high-nose’ over 7 years clear…Jos was tenth in the race won by Heinz-Harald Frentzens’ Williams Renault (Pinterest)

Photo Credits…

Pinterest, Sutton Archive, Bruno Betti P34 cutaway, Stupix, L ‘Unita,

Finito…