Posts Tagged ‘Ferrari 250LM’

(R Kaleda)

Kevin Bartlett awaits the start of the Country Club GT Trophy at Warwick Farm on 18 September 1966…

Magic shot from the collection of the late racer Ray Kaleda- that’s Glenn Abbey with the hand on the roof and Bob Jane’s Jaguar E Type Lightweight to the left, with Spencer Martin at the wheel- thanks to Glenn Moulds for identifying the meeting date and the race itself. I wrote an article a while back about the development of the Alfa TZ1/2; https://primotipo.com/2014/11/04/alfa-romeo-tz2-sebring-12-hour-1966/

Niel Allen’s Lotus Elan 26R entering the Farm’s Pit Straight but its a different meeting- Fred Gibson is at the wheel

 

(G Moulds)

 

(R Kaleda)

The front row- Niel Allen, on pole from Martin and Bartlett, the splash of red behind is Andy Buchanan’s Ferrari 250LM. That’s John Sawyer, Bob Jane Racing Team Manager in the blue trousers and shirt keeping an eye on Spencer. Click here for a piece on the Jag Lwt and Elan 26R; https://primotipo.com/2018/04/15/perk-and-pert/

(B Caldersmith)

First time down Hume Straight it’s Martin, Allen, Bartlett and Buchanan almost side by side, the Fred Gibson Lotus Elan and Brian Foley in the first of the Cooper S’.

Andy Buchanan in the Ferrari 250LM vacated by Spencer Martin at the end of 1965 and looking pretty as a picture as always. Car #3 is Ron Thorp’s AC Cobra. Piece on the Scuderia Veloce/David McKay LM here; https://primotipo.com/2014/07/03/pete-geoghegan-ferrari-250lm-6321-bathurst-easter-68/

(B Caldersmith)

Martin with a touch of the opposites out of Creek Corner ahead of Allen, the pair finished first and second followed by Kevin Bartlett’s TZ2, Andy Buchanan, 250LM Brian Foley’s Cooper S Lwt and Ron Thorp in his wonderful AC Cobra.

 

(B Caldersmith)

All concentration, Spencer was busy that weekend, he also raced the Jane Lotus Cortina but the Tasman Brabham BT11A Climax was left back in Brunswick.

Here he is on the exit of Polo sandwiched between Shepparton’s finest- Bryan Thompson in his ex-Beechey Mustang and Bob Beasley’s Cooper S. This Touring Car feature was won by Pete Geoghegan’s Mustang from Brian Foley’s Cooper S, Thompson, Beasley and Martin.

(unattributed)

 

(B Caldersmith)

Martin and Allen continue their race-long dice whilst lapping Noel Riley’s Honda S600- Noel Riley was a race and rally driver of some note as well as a handy race and rally engineer inclusive of a stint with Frank Matich during the F5000 years in his CV- not to forget the business he had with Colin Bond for a bit.

Etcetera…

Peter Manton’s Neptune Racing Morris Cooper S is not in this race but in the same batch of shots- too good a shot to waste in any event. Story about him here; https://primotipo.com/2017/11/29/mini-king-peter-manton/

Credits…

Ray Kaleda Collection, Peter Windsor, Glenn Moulds Collection, Rob Bartholomaeus

Tailpiece…

(P Windsor)

Kevin Bartlett chews the fat circa with Glen Abbey? 1966 in Alec Mildren’s Warwick Farm compound- TZ2 and the Brabham BT11A Climax whilst a grinning Fred Gibson in jeans and polo shirt wanders past. Magic.

Finito…

(unattributed)

The Frank Matich/Glynn Scott Matich SR3 Repco (DNF) homes in on the Phil West/George Reynolds Scuderia Veloce Ferrari 275 GTB Competizione Clienti during the 1 September 1968 Surfers Paradise 6 Hour…

As usual, the race was won by the SV Ferrari 250LM, that year driven by the brothers Geoghegan, click on this link for an article about that car inclusive of Surfers wins; https://primotipo.com/2014/07/03/pete-geoghegan-ferrari-250lm-6321-bathurst-easter-68/

In a race a bit light on entries- and reduced from twelve to six hours, the Geoghegans won having covered 249 laps from the Bill Gates/Jim Bertram Lotus Elan, 237 and Doug Whiteford/John Roxburgh/Frank Coad Datsun 2000 on 230. Other than David McKay’s ‘Old Red Lady’ 250LM the other fancied sports-racers all retired- the Matich/Scott Matich SR3 Repco, Palmer/Brown Ferrari P4/Can-Am350 and O’Sullivan/Baltzer/Bassett Lola T70 Chev.

I hadn’t realised the significance of this Ferrari 275 GTB as one of three RHD ‘Competizione Clienti’ specification 275’s of a total 1965 production run of ten. The addition to the nose of the car appears to be a camera- I would love to see the footage if it exists?

Chassis #07545, the seventh of the ten cars, was ordered by Britain’s Maranello Concessionaires, it was intended as their Le Mans reserve car- their entries that year comprised a P2 raced by Jo Bonnier and David Piper and a 250LM steered by Mauro Bianchi and Mike Salmon, both cars failed to finish.

The GTB wasn’t completed in time for the 24 hour classic but starred as an exhibit at the 42nd International IAA Motor Show in Frankfurt that September. Maranello sold it in October 1965 to Paddy McNally, then a respected journalist later to make a motza as an equity-holder in Allsport Ltd along with Bernie The Unbelievable (Ecclestone).

SV 250LM goes under its stablemate at Surfers (unattributed)

 

Frank Gardner circa 1966, probably in Australia during the Tasman. Where folks? (Repco Collection)

The GTB featured in an Autosport feature, McNally waxed lyrical about driving the car on the fast uncluttered roads of Europe inclusive of the Col des Mosses in Switzerland. ‘Even at close to 6000 pounds…the Ferrari represents excellent value and it is quite the best car that i have ever driven.’ McNally’s enthusiasm for these machines was genuine, he later acquired #09027 and raced it at Montlhery in the Paris 1000km.

Ford race team boss Alan Mann was the next owner two years hence, along the way he returned it to the factory where the bumpers were removed and big fog-lights installed and then sold it to one of his stars- Frank Gardner.

FG used the car to commute to his race commitments across the UK and Europe- these were many and varied inclusive of Touring Cars, World Manufacturers Championship Prototypes and Sportscars, F2 and the occasional F1 event. It would be intiguing to know just how many km’s the ultra fast GT did in Frank’s short ownership.

The Australian International then brought the car to Australia in the summer of 1967/8 to take up his usual Tasman drive with Alec Mildren, that year he raced the Brabham BT23D Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 2.5 V8. He sold it to Gallaher International, a British cigarette company- sponsor of the 500 mile Bathurst enduro in 1966 and 1967, who used it as a promotional tool.

Scuderia Veloce team driver Bill Brown bought it next, it was during his ownership that Phil West/George Reynolds raced it to eighth outright and first in class (the only car in the class) at Surfers in 1968. It seems this was the machines only race in period.

Melbourne motor racing entrepreneur/hill-climber Jim Abbott was the next owner, I dare say he gave it a run up Lakeland once or twice on the way to its garage at home- after his death it passed to Daryl Rigg and then to Ray Delaney who owned it for seven or so years using the car extensively. So too did Max Lane including contesting Targa Tasmania in 1993- the car left Australia many years ago as the global investment grade commodity it is.

#07545 in recent years (Talacrest)

Competizione 275 GTB’s…

The competition variants of one of Ferrari’s most sought after Grand Turismo’s was born of Enzo’s swifty in attempting to homologate his 1963 250P sports-prototype ‘in drag’- the 250LM as a GT car to replace the revered GTO. The FIA could see  the 3.3 litre LM- a larger capacity 250P with a roof for what it was and refused to homologate it.

Even as a GT the 250LM won Le Mans of course. Masten Gregory and Jochen Rindt flogged their NART entry to death- but not quite and won in 1965 after the more fancied Ferrari P2 and Ford GT40 Mk2 prototypes fell by the wayside with all manner of problems.

As a consequence, needing a GT racer, Ferrari set to modifying the just released in 1964 GTB whose baseline specifications included a sophisticated ‘Tipo 563’ chassis, independent suspension front and rear, aerodynamic bodywork, four-wheel disc brakes, five-speed rear mounted transaxle and the well proven ‘Tipo 213’ Colombo V12- in this car SOHC, two-valve and 3.3 litres (3286cc- 77 x 58.8mm bore and stroke) in capacity.

275GTB prototype and first car built #06003 during the 1966 Monte Carlo Rally crewed by Giorgio Pianta and Roberto Lippi, DNF driveline (unattributed)

Depending upon your source there are either three or four distinct series or phases of build of competition 275’s.

The first are the relatively mild modifications to chassis #06003 and #06021.

#06003 is the prototype, very first 275GTB built in 1964, it was retained by the factory for testing purposes throughout 1965, then modified and entered in the 1966 Monte Carlo Rally. #06021- is ‘the third GTB built and the prototype for the 1965 customer competition cars’ according to Peter Sachs who owned it twice. Its first custodian was a Roman, Antonio Maglione who contested at least four Hillclimb events in it in June/July 1965 having acquired it that April.

The second group of three works cars (plus a fourth built to this spec in 1966) designated ‘Competition Speciale’ were extensively modified by a team led by Mauro Forghieri with lightweight tube frames based on the standard Tipo 563 chassis.

The motors were six-Weber carb, dry-sumped Tipo 213 engines to 250LM spec giving 290-305 bhp and had 330 LM Berlinetta style noses with an air-scoop atop the long bonnets.

Other modifications included holes in interior panels, plexiglass windows and the use of magnesium castings for some engine and transmission parts. These cars, also designated 275 GTB/C Speciale, the bodies of which were of course designed by Pininfarina and built by Scaglietti are said by some to be the most direct successors to the 250GTO.

After a DNF at Targa and third in class at the Nürburgring 1000km #06885 was sold by Scuderia Ferrari to Ecurie Francorchamps who raced it at Le Mans in 1965 achieving first in class and third outright- stunning for a GT. The reputation of these ‘275 GTB/C’s was underway.

Ferrari 275 GTB cutaway, specifications as per text (unattributed)

 

Scuderia Veloce line up before the 1968 Surfers 6 hour with Pete Geoghegan’s stout frame back to us. The #17 Ferrari Can-Am 350 DNF in the hands of Jim Palmer and Bill Brown. The West/Reynolds GTB is alongside and victorious Leo and Pete Geoghegan 250LM to the left (Rod MacKenzie)

Gardner’s #07545 was one of ten cars designated 275 ‘Competizione Clienti’ or ‘GTB/C Series 1′, which were built as dual purpose customer road/racers between May and August 1965- they were constructed in parallel with the works cars mentioned above and delivered only to privateers.

The specifications of this batch, very close to production cars included short nose bodies and six Weber DCN3 carbs, rather than the standard three, feeding essentially a standard wet sump Tipo 213 engine. The fuel tank was 140 litres rather than the standard 94 litre jobbie, the spare sat vertically aft of the tank. A higher rear shelf is a visual difference with three air vents in each rear guard a signal of menace. No two cars were identical but most had lightweight alloy bodies.

The final run of twelve cars, the ‘9000 series chassis’ were super-trick, schmick jiggers and are variously described as ‘275 GTB Berlinetta Competizione’ or ‘275 GTB/C’.

They have lightweight long-nose bodies built by Scaglietti which were half the thickness of the 250GTO’s and a specially designed steel and aluminium Tipo 590A chassis which was lighter and stiffer than the standard unit. The suspension and hubs were reinforced, clutch upgraded and a different steering box fitted.

The dry sumped Tipo 213 V12- which allowed the engine to be mounted lower in the frame, was tuned to 250LM specifications with some Electron components incorporated- sump, cam cover, timing chain casing and bell-housing- power was circa 275-282bhp @ 7700rpm. The three big Weber 40 DF13 carbs were a design unique to the car and fitted due to a clerical stuff up by Ferrari who had not homologated the six-carb Weber option.

Out and out racers, these were the only cars referred to by the factory as 275 GTB/C and were the last competition GT’s fettled in Maranello- the Daytona GTB/4 racers were modified in Modena.

Le Mans Esses 1967. The second placed Ferrari P4 of Scarfiotti/Parkes ahead of eleventh placed and first in class Filipinetti Ferrari 275GTB/C #09079 driven by Steinemann/Spoerry (LAT)

 

Ray Delaney in GTB #07545 at Amaroo Park, Sydney in 1981

Credits…

Jaguar Magazine, Repco Collection via Nigel Tait, Rod MacKenzie, Ray Delaney, Talacrest, barchetta.cc, LAT, Stephen Dalton

Tailpiece: 1968 Surfers 6 Hour…

(unattributed)

Borrani’s at the front and Campagnolo’s up the back, ain’t she sweet…

Finito…

(unattributed)

Frank Matich ahead of the Australian sportscar pack at Warwick Farm in 1968- the car is his Matich SR3 Repco ‘720’ 4.4 V8, 5 May …

The chasing pack comprises the ex-works Scuderia Veloce Ferrari 350 Can-Am driven by Bill Brown- filling Chris Amon’s shoes after he departed back to Europe, Niel Allen’s white Elfin 400 Chev, Bob Jane’s #2 Elfin 400 Repco 4.4 driven by Ian Cook and then the #5 Scuderia Veloce Ferrari 250LM of Pete Geoghegan.

Pete and Leo G shared the car to win the Surfers 6 Hour enduro later that year, both had a drive or three of the ‘Old Red Lady’ as David McKay referred to his favourite car, in preparation for the race.

The #16 car is Tony Osbourne’s Argo Chev driven by Peter Macrow- then the twin-dark striped Lotus 23B Ford of Bob Muir another obscured Lotus 23- that of Glynn Scott, then the distinctive shape of a mid-dark coloured Elfin Mallala Ford driven by Ray Strong in front of Doug MacArthur, Lotus 26R and then, finally, John Leffler’s Cooper S Lightweight at the rear. His ‘Sports-Racing Closed’ Mini is somewhat of a fish outta-water amongst this lot.

Of the ‘big bangers’ racing in Australia at the time, the Lionel Ayers MRC Oldsmobile is absent as is the Noel Hurd driven, Globe Products owned Elfin 400 Ford. Oh, there is no sign of Alan Hamilton’s Porsche 906 or was he in between 906’s at the time perhaps?

There was no Australian Sportscar Championship in 1968- but the order of this race, in its first lap and just after the start is pretty much indicative of the state of competitive play at the time.

For the sake of completeness, the one race Australian Tourist Trophy, a prestigious event, was run at Mallala in January 1968 and won by Matich at a canter from Geoff Vercoe’s Cicada Ford, three laps adrift of FM’s SR3. Of the cars in the opening photograph, only the Jane Elfin 400 made the trip to South Australia.

Perhaps the timing of the ATT was sub-optimal as most of the top guns ran in the Tasman Series sportscar support races- at Surfers, Warwick Farm, Sandown and Longford over four weeks from 11 February to 4 March. The Adelaide race was tempting fate so close to the start of the Tasman and logistically Adelaide and the Gold Coast are a long way apart regardless of a team home base in Melbourne or Sydney.

Happy chappy. FM sits in his brand new Matich SR4 Repco 4.8 ‘760’ during the cars press launch at the ‘Rothmans Theatre’, Sydney Showgrounds on 26 November 1968. Car made its race debut the following weekend at Warwick Farm on 1 December

The ball-game changed into 1969 off course, Matich’s SR4 4.8 litre Repco 760- four cam ‘Sledge Hammer’ first raced at Warwick Farm on 1 December 1968. Then Bob Jane’s McLaren M6B Repco ‘740’ 5 litre and Niel Allen’s Chev F5000 engined Elfin ME5 joined the grids during 1969.

But Matich blew the grid apart with the SR4 all the same, and then, thankfully for all of us, jumped back into single-seaters (F5000) where he belonged.

But Lordy, didn’t he provide some fizz, fire and sparkle to sportscar racing for a decade or so? Just ask Chris Amon how quick FM was in a sporty during that Tasman Summer of Sixty-Eight…

Photo and Other Credits…

Snapper of the opening photograph unknown- i’d like to attribute it as it is a beaut shot if any of you can assist, Getty Images, Dick Simpson, Mike Feisst, Dave Friedman and Brian Caldersmith Collections.

‘Australia’s Top Sports Cars’ article by Graham Howard in Racing Car News May 1967. Thanks to Dale Harvey and Neil Stratton for assisting with car identification and the event date of the opening photograph.

Frank Matich and the SR3 Oldsmobile during the Warwick Farm Tasman meeting in 1967- the car’s race debut. That’s Ted Proctor’s Proctor Climax behind. Traco tuned ally Olsmobile V8, ZF 5 speed box and chassis all but identical to the Elfin 400 which preceded this car with some tubes added (D Simpson)

SR3 Etcetera…

I’ve not quite gotten to the Matich SR3’s yet, in terms of an article but click on the SR4 piece referenced below- there is a bit at the end of it about the SR3 and a complete Matich chassis list which will tell you what is what.

The 1967-1968 period is an interesting one from a technological racing history perspective.

Huge advances were made in tyres thanks to the application of vast wads of polymer chemistry research dollars to create products which were grippier than those which went before with consequent reduction in lap times.

Then of course their was the exponential progress in aerodynamics pioneered by Jim Hall and his boys at Chaparral in Midland, Texas well before their adoption by Ferrari and Brabham in F1 first, in 1968.

Sandown Tasman meeting the week after Warwick Farm, Peters Corner. This series of SR3’s were beautiful racing cars in all and whatever form. Note that the rear spoiler is bigger than that used the week before (B Caldersmith)

Of interest perhaps, is that it seems Matich and his crew have changed the roll-bar section of the chassis between its debut at Warwick Farm, see the colour photo above, and Sandown. Look how high it is in Sydney, and how low in Melbourne the week later whilst FM appears to be sitting in the same spot.

The car ran in as finished and completely unsorted state at the Farm with FM treating the whole weekend inclusive of races as a test and development exercise- Niel Allen won the feature race at that meeting in the ex-Matich Elfin 400 Traco Olds.

(M Feisst)

Peter Mabey prepares to alight the new SR3 he helped build, in the Sandown paddock. The gorgeous dark green machine with its neat gold ‘Frank Matich Pty Ltd’ and ‘SR3’ sign-writing and striping is about to be scrutineered.

The body, to Matich design, was built by Wal Hadley Pty. Ltd. at Smithfield in Sydney’s outer west, no doubt Wal and his crew enjoyed working on a racer rather than the hearses which were and still are their mainstream business!

The chassis was constructed by Bob Britton’s Rennmax Engineering in Croydon Park, also to Sydney’s west but closer in. Various independent sources have it, including Britton, that the spaceframe is pretty much tube-for-tube Elfin 400 with a few additional sections added to assist torsional rigidity.

Graham Howard credits the wheel design as Britton’s, said items of beauty were cast by the Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation at Fishermans Bend, Melbourne- also suppliers to Garrie Cooper.

Peter Mabey did the Can-Am tour with FM in 1967, I wonder where he is these days, his story of the Matich years would be interesting?

FM beside the SR3 Repco 4.4 V8 at Road America on 3 September 1967. Note the front spoiler, car still fitted with ZF tranny. The plan was to return to the US with the SR4 in 1968. If the team had done that, fitted with a reliable 5 litre 560 bhp V8 it is conceivable FM could have taken a Can-Am round whilst noting the 7 litre 1968 McLaren M8A Chev’s were almighty cars. If, if, if… (D Friedman)

So, the delicate looking Matich SR3 Oldsmobile which made its race debut at the Warwick Farm Tasman round in 1967 is ‘effete’ in comparison to the fire-breathing 4.4 litre Repco RB720 V8 engined car- blooded in battle during several Can-Am rounds in 1967, which took on, and slayed Chris Amon’s Scuderia Veloce Ferrari 350 Can-Am in the three 1968 Tasman sportscar races Matich contested that summer.

For whatever reason, I am intrigued to know why, FM did not contest the final round at Longford- the last ever race meeting at the late, lamented road circuit. To have seen Frank and Chris duking it out on that circuit, in those damp conditions, on that day- Amon took the all-time lap record in the Ferrari remember, would really have been something!

(B Caldersmith)

The two shots from Brian Caldersmith’s Collection above and below were taken during the 1968 Warwick Farm Tasman- Chis and Frank had some great dices with the hometown boy coming out on top.

In similar fashion to Matich, Amon didn’t do the whole Can-Am in 1967, he joined the series after two of the P4’s which he and his teammates had raced in the manufacturers championship were ‘sliced and diced’ into Can-Am 350 lightweight Group 7 form. But Chris had seen enough of the SR3 stateside to know his Australian summer would not be a cakewalk.

This SR3 is considerably lower with much wider tyres of a diminished aspect ratio compared with twelve months before- at this stage FM was the Australian Firestone Racing Tyre importer/distributor and doing plenty of test miles.

No high wing was fitted to the car yet- despite FM looking closely at what Chaparral were up to in the US, but that would come of course.

(B Caldersmith)

Further Reading…

Ferrari P4/Can-Am 350; https://primotipo.com/2015/04/02/ferrari-p4canam-350-0858/

Elfin 400/Traco Olds; https://primotipo.com/2015/05/28/elfin-400traco-olds-frank-matich-niel-allen-and-garrie-cooper/

Matich SR4 with some SR3 bits; https://primotipo.com/2016/07/15/matich-sr4-repco-by-nigel-tait-and-mark-bisset/

Longford with plenty of 350 Can-Am; https://primotipo.com/2018/07/05/longford-lap/

Matich, SR3 (RCN-Dickson)

Tailpiece: O’Sullivan, Matich SR3 Repco from Niel Allen, Elfin 400 Chev, Warwick Farm early 1969…

(D Simpson)

Roll on another twelve months to Warwick Farm 1969 and Matich is up front in the distance aboard the all-conquering SR4 Repco 760 4.8 V8 with Perth businessman-racer Don O’Sullivan racing the now winged SR3 Repco 720 4.4 V8.

The car following O’Sullivan through the ‘Farm’s Esses is the Elfin 400 Chev aka ‘Traco Olds’ raced by Matich in 1966- sweeping all before him that year before building the first SR3 and selling the Elfin to Niel Allen. Niel and Peter Molloy modified the car in several ways, most notably replacing the Olds/ZF combination with a 5 litre Chev and Hewland DG300 gearbox- but not really troubling Matich with the modified, faster car.

Lets not forget the role Garrie Cooper played in contributing to the design of the SR3- it is all but a direct copy of the Elfin 400 chassis- that story told in the Elfin 400 article link above.

Superb ‘Racing Car News’ cover by David Atkinson of Matich in the SR3 ahead of Alan Hamilton’s Porsche 906 Spyder.

The 1967 Australian Tourist Trophy was won by Matich from Hamilton and Glynn Scott’s Lotus 23B Ford on 21 May 1967 at Surfers Paradise.

The scene depicted has a bit of creative licence in terms of the earth banks on the right, if indeed it is meant to be Surfers?

Finito…

(P Maslen)

Paul Hawkins appears reasonably fleet of foot, first dude on the left…

And so he should too- the Australian international had far more experience than the locals at Le Mans run and jump starts. What great panoramic, colourful, atmospheric photographs these are.

The first few cars lined up in the 3 September 1967 twelve hour enduro are the Hawkins/Jackie Epstein Lola Mk3 Chev, Alan Hamilton/Glynn Scott Porsche 906, Bill Brown/Greg Cusack Ferrari 250LM, Bill Gates/Jim Bertram Lotus Elan and then the white Kevin Bartlett/Doug Chivas Alfa Romeo GTA.

Whilst Paul was quick to the car, the task of affixing his Willans six-pointer was tricky when getting his Heavy Chevy started even in the calmness of a paddock, let alone with a schrieking 2 litre Porsche flat-6 blasting past and reinforcing his tardiness. Not that the notion of outrunning the Porsche over twelve hours should have been an issue- the Gates Lotus is also fast away whilst at far right is the red John Keran Volvo P1800S.

(P Maslen)

 

Hamilton from Hawkins, 5 litres of Chev V8 is hard to deny!, end of lap 1, he will grab the lead before the fast right hand swoop under Dunlop Bridge (P Maslen)

The last Le Mans 24 Hours with a running start was the 1969 event when Jacky Ickx famously walked to his John Wyer Ford GT40 before carefully fitting his belt- and winning the following day with Jackie Oliver.

The tragic irony of Ickx’ protest was that the ‘unbelted’ John Woolfe died in his Porsche 917 in a first lap accident- safety and seatbelts were the end of that bit of racing spectacle, fair enough too.

Lone ranger, Ickx, Le Mans 1969 (unattributed)

David McKay’s Scuderia Veloce 250LM was almost ‘rusted to this race’. It was never the fastest thing entered but it won in 1966- crewed by Jackie Stewart and Andy Buchanan, in 1967 with McKay’s regular team drivers of the day, Bill Brown and Greg Cusack at the wheel and in 1968 piloted by the brothers Geoghegan- Leo and Pete.

In second place behind the Brown/Cusack 250LM in 1967 was the Lola with 468 laps and third the Hamilton/Scott Porsche 906 with 460- the winners covered 490 laps of reliable, fast Ferrari motoring.

Surfers Paradise International Raceway was opened in 1966 with a bang- ‘Speed Week’ well and truly put Keith William’s circuit on the map in terms of both the motor racing community and the Queensland populace.

I wrote an article about that meeting a while back, check it out here; https://primotipo.com/2015/02/13/jackie-stewart-at-surfers-paradise-speed-week-1966-brabham-bt11a-climax-and-ferrari-250lm/

‘Speed Week’ in 1967 included the Gold Star race won by Spencer Martin from Paul Bolton, both aboard Brabham Climax’ the Sunday before, the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix on Saturday 2 September and the Rothmans 12 Hour the following day- the race started at 10am, Des White’s ‘Racing Car News’ account of the race sets the scene, ‘Sunday dawned just perfect, sunshine, a cool breeze, and the circuit looked great after a massive clean up following Saturday’s AGP for Motor Cycles’.

‘The garbage trucks removed the rubbish, several ambulances had removed all the leather clad bodies that had been lying around under Dunlop Bridge, and some six police cars had removed many of the exuberant but unfriendly Ned Kelly types from Repco Hill.’ This article is for the most part a truncated variant of Des’ great work in the September 1967 issue of ‘Racing Car News’.

Thirty-seven cars entered the meeting with a somewhat disappointing nineteen fronting for practice- notable absentees were Australia’s large population of Lotus 23’s and local clones thereof, the three Elfin 400’s of Bob Jane, Noel Hurd and Niel Allen. Frank Matich was taking in some Can-Am rounds in his Matich SR3 Repco at the time- all of the cars mentioned were/are ‘sprinters’ rather than purpose built endurance machines so perhaps the lessons of the previous year in terms of the longevity required had been heeded and the driver/entrants therefore stayed away.

The ninth placed Ron Thorp/Ray Strong AC Cobra ahead of the Scuderia Veloce Greg Cusack/Bill Brown Ferrari 250LM, the pair completed 416 laps compared with the winners 490 (B Williamson)

In 1966 there were five ‘outright contenders’ entered- the Stewart/Buchanan and Epstein/Hawkins Ferrari 250LM, Piper/Attwood Ferrari 365P2, Sutcliffe/Matich Ford GT40 and Hamilton/Reed Porsche 906 whereas in 1967 there were only three, the Scuderia Veloce 250LM, Porsche Cars Australia 906 and Hawkins/Epstein Lola T70 Mk3 Chev- unfortunately the Scott-Davies/Harvey/Tuckey Lola T70 Chev Spyder failed to take the grid after terminal engine failure in practice. The car suffered piston and rod failure and after replacements flown in from the US were fitted on Saturday night the car dropped a valve during a practice session before the start ending a rather unpleasant weekend for the crew.

Fastest in practice was the Hawkins Lola T70 on 1:16.3 from the Hamilton 906, 1:18.7, then the SV 250LM on 1:20.6 before getting into the ‘class cars’- the Gates/Bertram Lotus Elan 1:27.0 then the Mildren Alfa GTA on 1:28.7 and Macarthur brothers Lotus Elan on 1:29.30- also under the 1:30 mark was the Bob Holden/Don Holland Cooper S Lwt on 1:29.7 seconds.

The Hawkins/Epstein Lola (chassis number SL73/112) had not long prior led the Reims 12 Hour for 3 1/2 hours but its Hewland LG500 gearbox cried ‘enough’ but not before setting a lap record on this very fast circuit of ‘147mph, done at 1 o’clock in the morning with full tanks, and included a speed of 200mph on the straight’ Des White observed. That race was won by the Guy Ligier/Jo Schlesser Ford GT Mk2B. The big Lola was clearly the quickest car in the Surfers race but over the ensuing years the success of these wonderful machines in endurance racing was hampered by the brittle nature of the Chev engines most entrants used and the Hewland box.

Scuderia Veloce Ferrari 250LM (C Anderson)

 

(Mixed bag here, again on the main straight- the #37 Charlie Smith/Noel Hall MGB, #18 Daimler SP250 shared by Peter Whitelaw/Ian Jenkins/Peter Ganderton and the only Holden entered- the Max de Jersey/Bill Birmingham 48-215 (P Maslen)

 

Its got a touch of Sebring about it in terms of variety: Calvert Holden 48-215, Ron Thorp AC Cobra, Charles Smith MGB and Phil Barnes, Morris Cooper S during the contests early laps (oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

Alan Hamilton made a great start at the flags drop- 10am, his 906 jumping sideways as he applied all of the 2 litre engines flat-6 power to the very abrasive Surfers tarmac- KB also got away well in the Mildren GTA as did the Gate’s Elan but the Porsche succumbed to the big Lola at the end of the first lap.

Bartlett slipped under Bill Gates as the 250LM eased into third place during lap 5, a dice developed between the John French driven BMC Australia MG Midget and the Elans whilst the Harry Gapps Renault 8 Gordini engine blew after 24 minutes of racing and was the first retirement.

At 10.30 the Lola led from the Porsche and Ferrari then Bartlett in the GTA, the Holden/Holland Mini Lwt and Doug Macarthur in the family’ Lotus Elan. The first of many pitstops for the Hawkins Lola took place at 10.45am when 3 pints of oil were sloshed into the oil tank- a poorly fitted rocker cover was leaking badly.

Hamilton’s leading Porsche had completed 43 laps in the first hour, a lap clear of the Cusack/SV Ferrari and Hawkins Lola on the same lap as the Italian V12. Bartlett was 4 laps back in fourth, then Holden on the same lap as KB with Ron Thorp’s AC Cobra a lap in arrears.

The T70 pitted again at 11.16am for 8 pints of oil and a replacement rocker cover gasket- the stop took 12 minutes 54 seconds. The Whitelaw Daimler SP250 pitted with lots of steam and leaking brakes whilst the class leading Thorp Cobra came in for a front end check.

(C Anderson)

 

The batch of three photographs above and below are of the John Keran entered Volvo P1800S crewed by John, Colin Bond and Max Winkless. On circuit the car is driven by Keran- the two pitlane shots show John staring down the camera and he and Col Bond discussing the progress of the car.
The rally men, mind you Bond was racing on all kinds of surfaces then in tourers, sporties and his Rennmax Peugeot s/c single-seater, did well- fourth in the Improved Production under 2 litre class won by the Datsun Racing Team Datsun 1600 Sports with the Victorian pair of John Roxburgh and thrice Australian Grand Prix winner, Dog Whiteford behind the wheel (P Maslen)

 

(J Keran)

 

Keran, Bond and who is it in that Team Total shirt to the right? (J Keran)

At 11.30am the Hamilton Porsche led with 65 laps completed from the Ferrari and Bartlett Alfa GTA with the Holden Mini in fourth as the Lola hung around the pits. The John Roxburgh Datsun was in sixth on the same lap as the Thorp Cobra with the two Datsuns seemingly having a good grip on the 2 litre Improved Production class as the Barry Tapsall/Henk Woelders car headed John Keran’s Volvo P1800S.

At 11.45 Kevin Bartlett pitted for fuel and oil and handover to Doug Chivas but the little, lightweight Alfa would not answer the starter- pushed behind the pit counter for closer attention there the machine stayed, ‘the engine tighter than tight’.

Hamilton took his first pitstop bang on noon- four tyres went on and 22 gallons of fuel and Glynn Scott went in, the stop took 3 minutes 24 seconds, at that stage the 906 had done 87 laps, the Ferrari 86, then Bob Holden, Paul Hawkins, John French, John Roxburgh and Ron Thorp followed.

The Thorp Cobra pitted again with brake problems and at 12.16 Greg Cusack handed the SV 250LM over to Bill Brown after the Ferrari was filled with 32 gallons of fuel, 6 pints of oil and four, fresh Firestones, the slick stop taking two minutes.

Around the same time the Harry Cape Triumph GT6 pitted to have its rear light taped after a bingle and the Holden Mini Lwt had its rocker-post replaced- the Hindmarsh Elfin retired over at Firestone- the field was falling away whilst Doug Whiteford took over the class leading Datsun 1600 from John Roxburgh at 1pm together with 20 gallons of fuel and 4 tyres.

Barry Ferguson/Max Stahl ‘Racing Car News’ entered MGB, Max being the much loved racer/editor/proprietor of RCN (C Anderson)

 

Peter Maslen, the enthusiast who captured these wonderful images images wrote of the photograph above as ‘One of the finest drives I ever saw. When Alan Hamilton dropped the Porsche into a ditch around the back of the circuit, he was encouraged to recover it- Glynn Scott took over and they came in third. This picture now holds pride of place on my study wall’. It is a marvellous shot of the Porsche 906- he has managed to capture the determined set of Scott’s jaw, local open-wheeler and sportscar ace rather nicely (P Maslen)

 

I suspect its the first of the pit-stops for the Hawkins Lola with the 1:21.2 being given to Alan Hamilton in the now leading Porker 906 (oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

Des White records that the Lola T70’s first ‘scheduled’ stop was made just on 1pm when 45 gallons of avgas and 4 pints of oil were taken onboard in 3 minutes 15 seconds- Paul remained at the wheel and set off at undiminished pace after the Ferrari and Porsche which was about 10 laps in front up the road.

Glynn Scott took the Porsche 906 to a 3 lap lead after three hours of racing at 1pm having completed 129 laps- he was a lap ahead of the Ferrari and ten laps ahead of the Lola on 119 laps. The works MG Midget of John French and Brian Foley was fourth on 115 laps, and doing amazingly well given its recent build and therefore hasty preparation, 3 laps clear of the Volvo Coupe now just 1 lap clear of the Whiteford Datsun 1600 after its pitstop, the Macarthur Elan was still in the race and running well.

Epstein Enterprises Lola T70 Mk3 (C Anderson)

 

The Bartlett/Doug Chivas Alfa Romeo GTA ‘RHD’- the second of Alec Mildren’s two GTA’s (P Maslen)

 

Ross Bond’s legendary Austin Healey 3000 in its more formative specifications in a long, successful race career and the John Keran Volvo P1800S (oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

Alan Hamilton took over the 906 at 2.03pm for a top up of fluids and driver change, losing 3 minutes 10 seconds and in so doing allowed the Ferrari 250LM into the lead- then Bill Brown pitted the Ferrari to change over to Greg Cusack, that stop took 2 minutes 45 seconds, in the process re-entering the race a lap and a half behind Hamilton- both cars were well clear of the Lola which was in Jackie Epstein’s hands after a 7 minute stop.

Alan Hamilton niggled Cusack in the 250LM for several laps looking for a way past to increase his advantage finally getting alongside on the outside of Lukey- Greg held his line, the Porsche left the road, shot over a low mound and hit the Armco. The Victorian regained the circuit after 30 seconds but as the car entered Shell Straight the rear fibreglass body panel blew open and was ‘dragged along like some weird insect in the middle of a mating dance’ as White poetically put it!

The flustered pilot pulled off at Firestone, his race seemingly run but he was pursuaded to return the car to the pits for repairs- the team made good the rear panel with a combination of rivetted aluminium, race-tape and wire, they lost 17 minutes in the process with Glynn Scott determined to make up the lost time (in one of his photo captions White wrote that the 906 lost a total of 1 1/4 hours in the pits in total- not sure what is correct).

250LM at rest (C Anderson)

 

The Lotus Elan 26R crewed by disc-jockey Bill Gates and Jim Bertram (P Maslen)

 

Mroom-waaahhhrr. Scotty on the hop 906- where on circuit folks? (oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

By this stage the ever reliable ‘Old Red Lady’ as David McKay referred to his adored car was in a lead which was all but impossible to peg back.

By 3pm the LM had completed 212 laps and had a 22 lap lead over the French/Foley MG Midget which was in a stunning second place from the Hawkins/Epstein Lola- which had also been back to the pits during the 906 time standing still. The Roxburgh/Whiteford Datsun 1600 still led its class and was fifth outright at a time the Porsche was back in ninth after going back to the pits for a further 49 seconds of repairs.

The French/Foley Midget pitted near 4pm with a broken scavenge pump whereupon the crew worked to convert the gallant little car from a dry to wet sump- this marvellous effort was in vain when the oil pump shaft broke at 4.20pm.

Scott pushed the robust 906 along very quickly- lapping in the regular 1:20’s, by 5pm he was back in sixth with 251 laps on the board, he was in sparkling form no doubt buoyed by his victory in the NSW ANF1.5 Championship aboard his old Lotus 27 Ford at Catalina Park in mid-August over Max Stewart and Phil West amongst others- Tapsall’s Datsun had completed 253 laps and Keran’s Volvo 255. With five hours to run even the third placed Roxburgh Datsun 1600 Sports looked likely to be caught by the flying Porsche.

The Tapsall Datsun pitted at 5.10pm for fuel and tyres but refused to start and was taken behind the pit wall where the battery and starter motor were replaced. Hamilton jumped back into the 906 at 5.38 pm having taken on 20 gallons of fuel and was after the third placed car- now only 4 laps away- a quick, high speed spin under the Dunlop Bridge at 6.50pm did not diminish his intent.

Not too hard to tell which car was artist Colin Anderson’s favourite! The winning 250LM (C Anderson)

 

A routine fuel and tyre stop for the victorious 250LM and below that the rumbling Lola in the Repco Hill to Castol corner section of the circuit prior to ‘Rothmans Straight’- the main straight(P Maslen)

 

Hard to tell but I think its Doug Chivas in the Mildren Alfa GTA, therefore practice, perhaps KB can advise (oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

By 7 pm the Cusack/Brown Ferrari 250LM led the Hawkins/Epstein Lola T70 by over 25 laps having completed 374 circuits of the challenging Nerang layout- by then the speedy 906 was only a lap adrift of the leading Datsun and gaining fast. The Holden/Holland Cooper S Lwt followed on 326 laps, a lap clear of the Volvo.

Henk Woelder’s, later Australian F2 Champion aboard Bill Patterson’s Elfin 600E Ford, exited his Datsun after again replacing the car’s battery and starter motor- only fifteen cars remained in the battle at this point.

Glynn Scott took over the 906 again at 8pm after a 3 minute 49 seconds stop for fuel- his first flying lap in the dark was a 1:21.2, about 5 seconds quicker than the Ferrari and 10 seconds better than the big rumbling Lola- both of these machines being stroked along to the finish in ‘secure’ positions of course- Scotty had a big spin under Repco after 3 laps but kept on pushing all the same.

Woelders’ Datsun re-entered the fray but was black-flagged for running without rear tail-lights- Whiteford’s similar car (#28 rather than Woelders’ #29) was shown the flag- ‘a nasty scene was avoided’ as ‘Dicer Doug’ was not a man to be trifled with, and the Woelders machine was put away for the rest of the night.

MGB pitstop, probably Max Stahl (C Anderson)

 

The rumbling Lola in the Repco Hill to Castol corner section of the circuit prior to ‘Rothmans Straight’- the main straight (P Maslen)

 

From right- #7 works, new French/Foley MG Midget which is extant, de Jersey/Birmingham Holden FJ, #14 Hallam/Pare Ford Anglia, #15 Lister/Seldon Volvo 122S, #28 Roxburgh/Whiteford Datsun 1600 Sports, #4 250LM, #8 Holden/Holland Morris Cooper S Lwt (oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

By 9 pm with one hour left to run the Ferrari had completed 448 laps, 20 laps ahead of Paul Hawkins who was at the wheel for the final stint, Glynn Scott was still lapping in the low 1 min 21’s in his series of inspiring stints and was by then up to third outright with 417 laps- 11 adrift of the curvaceous Lola.

Hawkins pitted for the last time at 9.25pm, the two and a bit minutes stop handed Glynn another 2 laps with Hawkins circulating in the 1:26’s to go easy on the car, Des White finished his wonderful article on the race with ‘The race finished in the cold dampness of 10pm and the Ferrari coasted into the presentation area, quickly joined by the Porsche which received and rightly deserved all the ovation it received followed by the big mean, green machine, the Lola.’

‘The results were just about what one must expect in an endurance event, the Ferrari taking out its second Rothmans 12 Hour, while both Hawkins and Hamilton vowed to be back next year with the same teams, for as Hawkins stated- ‘Its time we won this thing.’

Alan Hamilton was and is a tall fella so lopping the lid off Porsche 906 ‘007’ made sense especially in an Australian sprint racing context- the bulk of our sportscar races were short. Here looking all pristine in practice entering ze pits, she looked a bit more grungy and used post-event (oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

 

Three Minis were entered in the Sports Racing under 2 litre class, this one is the Phil Barnes/Jeff Leighton Morris Cooper S- they completed 238 laps and placed seventh in the class won by the Hamilton/Scott 906, the best placed Cooper S was the BMC works entry raced by Bob Holden and Don Holland to fifth with 437 laps completed (P Maslen)

 

250LM and 906 early in the contest, main straight (oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

 

(P Maslen)

The results of the race, to the first three finishers in each class are as follows; (source RCN)

Outright

Greg Cusack/Bill Brown Ferrari 250LM, Paul Hawkins/Jackie Epstein Lola T70 Mk3 Chev, Alan Hamilton/Glynn Scott Porsche 906

Sports Racing over 2 litres

250LM, T70, Max de Jersey/A Shaw Holden FJ

Sports Racing under 2 litres

906, Bob Holden/Don Holland Morris Cooper S Lwt, David Seldon/Gerry Lister Volvo 122S

Improved Production over 2 litres

Ron Thorp/Ray Strong AC Cobra, Peter Whitelaw/Kevan Woolf/P Ganderton Daimler SP250

Improved Production under 2 litres

John Roxburgh/Doug Whiteford Datsun 1600 Sports, Chris Smith/Noel Hall MGB, Ray Kearns/Brian Lawler/Col Wear Volvo 122S

Ron Thorp on the hop, AC Cobra (Bowden Collection)

Afterthoughts…

Surfers Paradise owner/promoter Keith Williams tried very hard to establish this race, first over twelve hours duration in 1966/7 and then six hours in 1968/9 as fixtures on the Australian racing calendar.

Forty cars raced in 1966, 27 in 1967, 29 in 1968 and 23 in 1969, in the latter years Australian ‘Pony’ cars swelled the numbers and of course endurance events in Australia quickly evolved as Series Production/Group E Touring Car events in the late sixties with huge entries. ‘Sports prototype or racing sportscar’ numbers in each of the SPIR events were 8, 3, 4 and 7 from 1966 to 1969, which I understand on one level in the sense that the local population of such cars in Australia were sprinters rather than endurance racers. Having said that one could have run your twin-cam or Olds or Chev with a softer cam and used less revs for this event- all of which assumes the funds to do so of course.

The entry of cars from Europe was problematic given the distance involved without payment of generous subsidies and why would the Americans bother given the size of the Can-Am purses?

Sportscar construction spiked a bit in Oz in 1970/71 with the release of 2.5 litre Repco Brabham V8’s as the Tasman 2.5 Formula ended but so engined Rennmax’ and Elfins were fitted with motors which struggled over 100 miles let alone six hours- and so it was that Williams’ valiant attempts withered on the vine.

A pity.

Credits and References…

Peter Maslen, oldracephotos.com/Phillips, John Keran Collection, Bowden Collection, September 1967 Racing Car News

Superb drawings by Colin Anderson scanned from RCN

Tailpieces: Paul Hawkins T70 Mk3 Chev, Surfers…

(oldracephotos.com/Phillips)

An all time Top Ten Racing Cars pick for me- been on the list for forty years too so its unlikely to slip off it. A big arsed but oh so curvaceous, busty, buxom, broad- it oozes sex if you get my drift.

Twiggy it ain’t.

(unattributed)

Funnily enough Paul had a sprint win in the car before leaving Australia.

He contested the 34 lap, 76 mile ‘Gallaher GT Trophy’ race at Warwick Farm the weekend after Surfers on 10 September and had a terrific weekend, winning the race and a couple of five lappers as well. Niel Allen’s Elfin 400 Chev was 3 seconds a lap quicker in practice than Paul- and Glynn Scott’s Lotus 23B Ford twin-cam was half a chance too but come raceday Allen lost a tooth off the crown wheel relinquishing the lead to happy Hawkins.

Paul shortly thereafter bought the Lola from Epstein and had some club successes in it back in the UK before having a very successful Springbok tour with it that November/December 1967.

At this stage of his career Hawkins was both a sportscar ace for hire- Porsche, Ferrari and John Wyer spring to mind, and did good business racing modified GT40’s and Lolas out of his own workshops in Finchley, North London.

As most of you will be aware the gifted Australian lost his life in a semi-works T70 Mk3B Chev whilst contesting the very wet Tourist Trophy at Oulton Park on 26 May 1969- he left the track and hit a tree at Island Bend.

Finito…

image001

Looks of wonderment and amazement at the voluptuous lines of the Aston’s Frank Feeley penned body.  The ‘Wow Factor’ of contemporary racing cars never changes whatever the era does it?!…

Here it’s a Melbourne crowd on February 28 1958. Its the end of the long hot Australian summer but the crowd are well rugged up, Melbourne is notoriously ‘four seasons in one day’ sometimes and Fishermans Bend is an exposed windswept place at the best of times. At the wheel of the road-registered, ex-works Aston Martin DB3S chassis DB3S/9 is a youthful David McKay.

McKay aboard DB3S/9 at Fishermans Bend in February 1958. Nose of the car showing minor scars of battle, perspex headlight covers fitted to this car from its birth. First race the ’56 Rouen GP in May, then 2nd @ Le Mans ’56 driven by Moss/Collins, Salvadori was 2nd at Goodwood in September- car retained by Astons into 1957, the DBR1 the front line weapon that year with Brooks racing DBS3/9 at Easter Goodwood for 3rd. It was then used by the works for the last occasions as a practice car at Silverstone for the British Empire Trophy and for the Nurburgring 1000Km before sold by John Wyer to McKay with funds provided by Ampol (Westaway)

At the time he was ascending the driving ranks having cut his racing teeth in MG’s. He made it into the elite group too- let’s not forget were it not for a ropey jumped start call he would have won the 1961 Australian Grand Prix at Mallala aboard a Cooper T51 Climax. David would soon be known as much as a journalist, successful businessman and entrant-entrepreneur via his business ‘Scuderia Veloce’ as a driver though.

McKay raced this car to wins in the sportscar races that Fishermans Bend weekend, and was very successful in it throughout the country, taking 8 wins from 9 starts.

His only defeat, 2nd place was at the hands of Doug Whiteford’s ex-works Maser 300S in the Tasmanian Tourist Trophy at Longford in early 1958 during the Gold Star meeting.

McKay and passenger, Baskerville 1958 (HRCCT)

After Longford McKay and his crew took the car south to Hobart racing it at the new Baskerville circuit (above) in April and taking a comfortable win, and setting a new outright circuit record from Lyn Archer’s Cooper 1100 but churning through more of his diminishing stock of racing Avons due to the abrasive nature of the surface.

An amusing side-story is that the officer in charge of the old SS Taroona ship between Devonport and Port Melbourne took exception to the oversized trailer and refused to load it until David made representations to the Captain who graciously allowed the equipe aboard ensuring that important commitments to sponsors could be met.

db 3 s engine

Engine of the ex-works/McKay DB3S/9, raced at Albert Park, November 1958 by Stan Jones. 6 cylinder 2922cc DOHC 2 valve, twin plug all alloy engine fed by 45DCO Weber carburettors. Circa 225bhp @ 6000 rpm (Kevin Drage)

His last race in the car was successful, he took an Australian Tourist Trophy victory at Mount Panorama, Bathurst in October 1958 in what McKay described as ‘the faithful old ex-works Aston’s…greatest Antipodean win’.

The race was not an easy one. Initially Bill Pitt’s Jaguar XKD led and then Doug Whiteford, the formidable, forceful three-time AGP winner took the lead from McKay with Pitt 3rd. On lap 10 Doug had an enormous accident when the Maser was caught by a sudden gust of wind after coming over the second Conrod Straight hump threw the car out of control with the Maser spinning and hitting the right hand fence three times. Whiteford was almost flung from the car as it skidded backwards down the escape road and into another fence. Fortunately the St Kilda racer was only bruised by the wild ride.

McKay then led with an intermittent engine miss from Derek Jolly’s Lotus 15 Climax, a light rain shower adding to the degree of difficulty towards the end of the race. McKay won from Jolly, Ron Phillips and Frank Matich- Aston DB3S, Lotus 15 Climax, Cooper Jaguar and Jaguar XKC.

The weekend was a brilliant one for the Sydneysider as his new Jaguar Mk1 3.4, just imported for him by Ampol trounced the hitherto dominant Repco headed Holden sedans of John French and Leo Geoghegan in the sedan car handicap, to start the ‘Jaguar Era’ of Australian Touring Car racing.

After the Tourist Trophy win Stan Jones bought the racer but wasn’t really happy with it. The wonderful Le Mans second placed 1956 car then passed into Ray Barfield’s hands in Western Australia where its contemporary racing history ended in the early sixties. A summary of the cars history is in this article, rather than repeat myself;

https://primotipo.com/2017/03/23/bunbury-flying-50-allan-tomlinson-ferrari-500-et-al/

McKay’s first Aston, a production DB3S chassis #102 in the Carrathool paddock during its Australian LSR record breaking weekend in February 1957. Interesting to know who crafted the aero pod beneath which McKay sat and cooked! (Jek)

McKay was a very dab hand at the wheel of Aston’s by the time he bought his ex-Moss car…

He was part of the trio of privately run DB3S,  ‘Kangaroo Stable’ of cars raced by Australians Tony Gaze, Jack Brabham, Les Cosh, Dick Cobden, Tom Sulman and McKay in Europe in 1955.

McKays car, initially delivered to Tony Gaze, chassis DB3S/102 took the best result of the tour cut short by the cancellation of many sportscar races in Europe after the Le Mans disaster- McKay and Gaze were second in the 29 May Hyeres 12 Hour behind the winning Ferrari 750 Monza driven by Canonica/Munaron

At the end of the European Safari which included Oporto (Gaze 8th) and Goodwood (McKay/Gaze DNF distributor drive) David shipped the car straight to New Zealand for a number of races there including the Formula Libre NZ GP in January 1956,he retired from the Ardmore event won convincingly by Stirling Moss in a Maserati 250F.

The engine of the car was shipped back to the UK for a rebuild after a major failure during a race at Invercargill. From May 1956 production DB3S’ were fitted with twin-plug 210 bhp engines, it was in this form the engine was rebuilt and delivered from Feltham back to Sydney. The beautiful car was again race ready by early 1957.

Tony Gaze about to rejoin the May 1955 Hyeres 12 Hour, he shared the car with David McKay- car #20 behind is the Graham and Peter Whitehead DB3S DNF (CAMS)

The stunning colour photographs were taken of ‘102’ in February 1957 at Carrathool a tiny village 680 Km west of Sydney between Narrandera and Hay in New South Wale western Riverina.

The main automotive attribute of the town was a long, straight stretch of road between Carrathool and Gunbar which was ideal for record setting, and so it was that various Ampol sponsored cars sought to break some Australian speed records. The then current Australian LSR was the 136.4 mph set by Jack Saywell’s 2.9 litre Alfa Romeo Tipo B/P3 at South Australia’s Coorong in 1939.

After plenty of careful preparation inclusive of incorporating the beautifully made perspex fairing onto his Aston, McKay broke the record setting a time over the Flying Kilometre of 143.19 mph on the morning of 19 February 1957. The ‘Canberra Times’ reported that McKay made two full speed runs on the course, ‘during one run he skidded on a patch of loose dirt at 140 mph’.

This speed was soon eclipsed by other cars but the DB3S held the class record for some years.

David McKay at speed during the Ampol sponsored record-breaking weekend in early 1957. Carrathool a tiny hamlet with now around 300 inhabitants. A straight, flat road with a decent surface a long way from major population centres was ideal record breaking territory! (Jek)

The car was first raced in Australia at Easter Bathurst in April 1957, he was 2nd in the sportscar handicap and won the sedan and sportcar handicap from Paul England’s Repco headed Ausca, passing the very fast special built at Repco Research by England ‘running up to 139.3 mph to do so and clocking fastest quater mile time for the day’.

But the car saw little further use as the quicker ex-works machine arrived in Sydney in September 1957. DBS/9’s first race was the October 1957 13 lap NSW Sportscar Championship at Bathurst, an event the combination won comfortably with McKay taking the lap record despite using only 5200 of the Aston’s available 6000 rpm. Bill Pitt’s Jaguar D Type was timed at 144 mph on Conrod Straight with McKay at 136 mph using his self imposed rev limit.

Both of these extremely valuable cars still exist but sadly left Australia many years ago. Those of you with collections of Australian ‘Sports Car World’ magazine should have a fossick through them as McKay wrote two sensational articles about the ownership of his two Aston’s in the seventies, or maybe the eighties!..

Technical specifications as per text (Tony Matthews)

Aston DB3S Technical Specifications…

The Aston Martin DB3S was built from 1953 to 1957, 32 were constructed excluding the single-seater variant ‘DP155/1′ raced by Reg Parnell in New Zealand in 1956.

Fundamentally Willie Watson’s design was a shorter, lighter and stiffer car than Eberan Eborhorst’s Aston DB3. The car evolved over just four months making its debut in Reg Parnell’s hands at Charterhall on 23 May 1953.

The cars were designed around a period typical ladder frame chassis which was 7 feet 3 inches long- 6 inches shorter than DB3. The frame comprised twin tubular members of 4 inch 16 gauge chrome molybdenum steel and three 14 gauge four, and five inch cross-members. The shorter chassis made the car nimbler than its predecessor if somewhat skittish on bumpy surfaces. The track was reduced from 4′ 3″ to 4’ 1″.

Frank Feeley designed the very stylish body, as sexy as the DB3 was dowdy. More than a nod had been given in the direction of the contemporary Maserati A6GCS it seemed. Overall the car was shorter, narrower and lighter than the DB3 and importantly it ‘looked right’ straight out of the box.

Front suspension was independent by trailing links, torsion bars, piston type dampers and a roll bar. A De-Dion rear axle was used sprung by a torsion bar and located by trailing links and a Panhard rod, again with piston type shocks.

Naturally a David Brown gearbox was fitted, the S430 ‘box a 4 speeder with reverse, final drive was by spiral bevel in a light alloy casing with a ZF slippery diff usually fitted. Brakes initially were two-leading shoe Alfin drums- 13 inches in diameter at the front and 12 inches at the rear. From 1955 Girling disc bakes were specified, the rotors were 11.5 inches in diameter front and rear. Precise rack and pinion steering was fitted, two turns were required lock to lock.

A 2922cc all alloy DOHC, 2 valve, 6 cylinder engine provided the cars heart. It had 4 main bearings and wet cylinder liners with the valves disposed at an included angle of 60 degrees. Initially fitted with 35DCO Weber carburettors the engine gave 182 bhp @ 5500 rpm and 182 lb/ft of torque at 3800 rpm on a compression ration of 8.5:1.

The cars were of course developed extensively throughout their racing life with the works cars fitted with twin-plug heads and 45DCO Webers from May 1954 giving 225bhp @ 6000 rpm.

The ‘Kangaroo Stable Cars’ (DB3S/102 Gaze-McKay, DB3S/103 Sulman, DB3S/104 Cosh) delivered in early 1955 all had the 200 bhp Weber 40 DCO engine- when announced at Earls Court in October 1954 the production cars had a feeble and uncompetitive 180 bhp on triple SU’s.

For the sake of completeness special works engines included a supercharged 240 bhp car raced at Le Mans in 1954 and a 2992cc normally aspirated variant raced at Dundrod in 1955.

In an era of unlimited sportscars the production based 3 litre DB3S was rarely an outright contender, the big guns, depending upon the year were the Benz 300SLR, XKD Jags and Ferrari V12’s of varying capacity. But with a change to 3 litres for the manufacturers championship and a more uncompromising approach the DB3S’ younger brother triumphed at Le Mans in 1959 and won the manufacturers title to boot. The path to that success was in part via the DB3S journey…

David McKay and passenger doing some camera work at the then new Baskerville circuit, Tasmania in early 1958 (HRCCT)

Etcetera…

(unattributed)

McKay on the left and Doug Whiteford, Maserati 300S with Bill Patterson’s Cooper Climax Bobtail behind?

Its Longford before the startline was moved from here- towards the end of The Flying Mile, before Mountford Corner to what became Pit Straight- the stretch after Mountford.

(unattributed)

Perhaps an Ampol publicity shot- ‘Rice’ trailer? Nice rig.

Bibliography…

‘Historic Racing Cars in Australia’ John Blanden, ‘David McKay’s Scuderia Veloce’ David McKay, ‘Aston Martin: A Racing History’ Anthony Pritchard, ‘Bathurst: Cradle of Australian Motor Racing’ John Medley, ‘The Canberra Times’ 20 February 1957

Photo Credits…

Don Westaway, Kevin Drage, Ampol, Sharaz Jek, Tony Matthews, HRCCT- Historic Racing Car Club of Tasmania, CAMS

Tailpiece: McKay at high speed in DB3S/102 during a practice run at Carrathool, in New South Wales western Riverina in April 1957…

(Ampol)

Finito…

 

image

(Gasking/Repco)

‘Scuds’ was the nickname of David McKay’s Ferrari, Porsche and Volvo dealership on Sydney’s North Shore…

Here is the team with its Brabham BT23A Repco ‘740’ 2.5 V8 at Warwick Farm in 1967’ish. Not sure of the exact date, but it looks warm and Cusack carried #7 in the Hordern Trophy on 3 December 1967 so my tip is that weekend. He finished behind Frank Gardner’s Alec Mildren owned Brabham BT23D Alfa Tipo 33 V8, its race debut and John Harvey’s Brabham BT11A Climax.

Mind you, Cusack carried the same number in the 18 February ’68 Tasman Round won by Jim Clark’s Lotus 49 Ford DFW, Greg was out on lap 4 with brake problems. Upon a closer look, the car in the shot below, during the Tasman round does not have the green band at its noses tip, so let’s go for the shot above as pre Hordern Trophy.

From the left is the beautifully liveried Holden HR Station Wagon tow car.

It’s probably toting the big 186cid 3 litre ‘six’ and ‘three on the tree’ manual tranny. Mechanic Bob Atkin, later a Director of SV, then El Supremo McKay and driver Greg Cusack. Greg was a very successful Ford dealer himself in Canberra. He was said to have been as quick as anyone on his day but ‘those days’ didn’t happen often enough! The trailer is a ‘Rice’ rated then and eagerly sought after now.

Top period shots, luvvem!

image

Cusack at the Farm during the ’68 Tasman round in the SV BT23A (oldracephotos.com)

Chris Amon did some laps in the car that 1968 Warwick Farm 100 weekend too. I wonder if David McKay was keen to see just how fast the car could go- Chris was one of the fastest guys on the planet at the time after all, or perhaps he was helping with car setup.

That Tasman he was racing a works Ferrari Dino 246T his own team were running, and SV’s Ferrari P4/350 Can Am.

(D Grant)

The colour shot below is of Cusack on the same weekend- he was out of the championship race on lap 4 with brake problems whereas Chis was fourth in his Ferrari, Jim Clark won in a Lotus 49 Ford DFW.

(P Houston)

Credits…

Michael Gasking Collection/Repco, oldracephotos.com, oldracingcars.com, Perry Drury, Doug Grant, Peter Houston

Tailpiece

(P Drury)

Denny behind Jack’s BT23A in the Longford paddock in March 1967, Brabham won the Monday Tasman race taking the one and only Repco engined Tasman win, using a ‘640 Series’ 2.5 V8.

Finito...

martin 250 lm wf 1965

(John Ellacott)

Spencer Martin tips his Ferrari 250LM into the fast ‘Homestead Corner’ at Warwick Farm before unleashing the cars 3.3 litre V12 on the long Hume Straight, what a sound it must have made! August 1965…

Spencer Martin was one of Australia’s champion drivers of the 1960’s winning the Gold Star, the Australian Drivers Championship in 1966 and 1967 in a Brabham BT11A Climax.

His career could be summarised thus; he saw, he came, he conquered from 1960-1966, retired to marry and have a family, focus on business and then returned many years later…

martin portrait

Spencer Martin in his racing heyday, Lakeside 1965. (Bruce Wells)

I don’t cover Spencer’s career in detail but rather introduce an interesting article i discovered in a rally guide for an event held in memory of David McKay. Martin outlines his experiences as a driver/mechanic with McKay and Scuderia Veloce, if not the first, then certainly one of the first of Australia’s professional racing teams formed in 1959…

A brief background of McKay and SV is contained in these articles i posted a while back. One is predominantly about McKay’s Ferrari 250LM, one of the most evocative cars ever raced in Australia, https://primotipo.com/2014/07/03/pete-geoghegan-ferrari-250lm-6321-bathurst-easter-68/ , the other about his Ferrari P4/Can Am 350, an equally stunning car https://primotipo.com/2015/04/02/ferrari-p4canam-350-0858/  .

Martin commenced racing at Gnoo Blas, Orange NSW in 1960 in a Nota, he built from a kit himself, then progressed through the Prad Holden, a very successful sportscar and into ‘Appendix J’ sedans. He beat some of the heroes of the day in his ’48-215′ or FX Holden and was  approached by McKay to join SV. Martin picks up the story…

martin 48 215

Spencer in the ‘Boomerang Service Station’ Holden FX, Catalina Park, Katoomba 1963. It was consistent ‘giant killing’ performances against Norm Beechey and the like which attracted McKay to Martin. (Autopics.com.au Collection)

‘Work on the racing cars was carried out in a garage at the rear of his (McKay) house in Wahroonga on Sydney’s upper North Shore. We later moved to new premises beneath the Shell Service Station on the Pacific Highway at Wahroonga.

At this time I was driving the ‘Boomerang Service Station Holden’ for Joel Wakely and was keeping Norm Beechey very busy around Catalina Park, Warwick Farm and Sandown Park. In 1963 David brought Brian Muir back from the UK to drive in the Hardie Ferodo at Bathurst and I was to be Brian’s co-driver. Brian had been driving a Ford Galaxie in the UK and had won the British Touring Car Championship

David was, thankfully very impressed by my driving with Brian and told me he was about to retire and would I like to take over driving his Brabham. (Ex Jack Brabham BT4 Climax) Well you may imagine how I felt getting out of an EH Holden into an F1 Repco Brabham! We took the car to the short circuit at Warwick Farm for a few familiarisation laps where I was shocked by how much power the car had, especially how the far the nose lifted when you put the ‘pedal to the metal’.

It was not long before David entered the car at Bathurst. It was now 2.7 litres and running on methanol. He told me to keep it under 4500rpm down the straight for a few laps and be careful over the hump. I ‘pulled the string’ on the third lap and was doing 172mph over the hump. The car became completely airborne with a very much nose up attitude. I was wearing a Les Leston helmet with a small peaked visor to help keep the sun out of your eyes. Well the wind at this speed would catch under the visor which gave the effect of lifting you out of the car. It didn’t take long for me to remove the peak!’

martin longford tasman

Its 1967 as the painted date on the Longford Viaduct says. Martin eases his Bob Jane Racing Brabham BT11A Climax ‘IC-4-64’ into the right hander to exit the turn, ’67 Tasman ‘South Pacific Trophy’ 5 March 1967. He only lasted a lap of the race, his Climax FPF suffering ring failure. Jack Brabham won the race in his Brabham BT23A Repco. Clark took the series win in his Lotus 33 Climax FWMV 2 litre V8. Love the local ‘topography’, sturdy stone viaduct!, hay bales, painted, slippery white ‘no passing’ lines on the public roads. (oldracephotos.com/David Keep)

 

martin wf brabham 1967

Spencer Martin exercising all of his Coventry Climax’ lusty 235 horses through Leger Corner, Warwick Farm, December 1966. ‘Hordern Trophy’ Gold Star round won by Frank Gardners’ Brabham BT16 Climax from Kevin Bartletts’ Brabham BT11A and Martins’ similar car in 3rd. (Autopics.com.au Collection)

‘The biggest difference in driving the cars of David’s and my time was the safety aspect.

No seat belts, no fuel cells, no on-board fire extinguishers, no roll cages, no fireproof clothing. I was driving the Tasman Series in New Zealand and was wearing a polo-shirt made of nylon. When Jim Clark saw me in this he explained how dangerous nylon was in the event of a fire. Jim gave me a pair of his Dunlop Racing overalls. Boy, did I think I was smart wearing these and they were fireproof so I could go faster! Actually they gave you about 5 extra seconds in the event of a fire. They were made of cotton and soaked in a fire retardant. Rather different from today’s suits.

Another extremely dangerous factor was the aluminium fuel tanks which were placed either side of the drivers seat. We needed to have over 18 gallons of Avgas for a long race, so we packed dry ice around the tank prior to the race on hot days.’

001MartinAllenGibsonwm

Spencer Martins’ Ferrari 250LM ‘6321’  leads the ‘Country Club GT Race’ at Warwick Farm September 19 1965. The chasing Lotus Elan 26R’s are Niel Allen and Fred Gibson. (Heinz Federbusch)

 

Graham Hill and a quizzical Spencer with the SV Brabham BT4 Climax Hill raced during the 1964 Tasman- here in the Warwick Farm pitlane (unattributed)

‘Graham Hill was driving our new Brabham (BT11A Climax) at Warwick Farm in 1965. When we fuelled the car, an hour before the race, one tank was leaking through a crack in its top edge. I went into panic mode, Graham, however, asked me to go to the toilet and bring him back a bar of soap. He made this into a putty mixture and plastered it into the crack. As he explained, the leak was on the top of the tank, so after a few laps the fuel would be below the problem area. I used this fix a few times over the years. Can you imagine this sort of thing happening to an F1 Ferrari or McLaren?!

One of the biggest events to materialise at SV was when David talked Archie White, the Shell Racing Manager, into buying the 250LM Ferrari. I was not allowed to go to the wharf to bring it home as I had work to do on the Brabham. However I’ll never forget seeing it for the first time and David saying it was mine to drive!’

‘David was the best motoring journalist at this time. Not only was he able to write about cars, he could also drive them.

David was at the front of the grid for the 1963 Australian Grand Prix at Warwick Farm alongside Surtees and McLaren. He was the first Aussie home and all this on a 40 degrees Celsius day when many of the younger drivers stopped due to heat exhaustion. The temperature inside his car was measured at over 50 degrees.

agp 1963 front row

Front row of the AGP grid, Warwick Farm February 1963. Surtees on pole, Lola Mk4a Climax, McLaren Cooper T62 Climax and McKay Brabham BT4 Climax. Jack won in his BT4 Climax from Surtees, McLaren and McKay.(Autopics.com.au Collection)

David, in his motoring column, was very critical of the cars which Ford, GMH and Chrysler were building at that time. Sir Frank Packer allowed David to continue his reports in the Sydney Telegraph because his column was selling newspapers. When News Ltd took over the Tele, they would not allow him such a full hand as they explained they needed the advertisers money from the motoring industry so David left.’

martin bathurst 20lm 65

Spencer Martin in one of his early drives of the SV Ferrari 250LM at Murrays Corner, Bathurst, Easter 1965. (Autopics.com.au Collection)

 

martin

‘Australian Autosportsman’ magazine July 1965. Shell ‘Advertorial’! Martin on the cover in the SV Fazz 250LM, picture taken probably on the same day as the one above, but this time, i think, ‘Hell Corner’, which leads onto the uphill ‘Mountain Straight’ having gone past the pits. (Stephen Dalton Collection)

‘The first race for the 250LM was the Sandown Park Tasman round sports car race in February 1965…

Graham Hill was to drive the Brabham in the Tasman race, however he put it on David to allow him to also drive the LM. David kept his word to me and told Graham that ‘the boy’ was going to drive it. Well, Frank Matich was leading (in Elfin 400/ Traco Olds) then suddenly we did a ‘Stephen Bradbury’ as Matich blew up and we went on to win it’s very first race. In reality it was no match for the more powerful Elfins and Lola’s. It did however win every long distance race in which it was entered.

The ‘Old Red Lady’ as David affectionately called the LM, was a fantastic car to race. With the V12 very low slung in the engine bay behind the driver, and with 8000rpm, the noise inside and out was certainly something to remember for driver and spectator alike.

David was a vary hard taskmaster. He expected me to work on customer road cars during the day and maintain the Brabham and Ferrari after hours. I was made an offer by Bob Jane which I decided was better for my future so I moved on. Years later David wrote me a letter saying he was sorry for being so hard on me. This lead to a rekindled friendship where we travelled overseas together to many of the F1 races.

I really miss ‘The Old Man’. He was a true Ferrari-ist, and gave us all the true pleasure of seeing the two best cars ever to race in this country, the 250LM and P4 Ferraris!’

rcn martin lakeside

This ‘RCN’ cover David Atkinson painting depicts Spencer winning the 10 July Gold Star race at Lakeside, Queensland 1966 ahead of Kevin Bartlett #14 Brabham BT11A Climax and John Harvey Brabham BT14 Ford 1.5…1-3rd in the race en route to Martins 1966 Gold Star title. (Racing Car News)

David McKay had this to say about Spencers’ departure and career in his wonderful autobiography, ‘David McKays Scuderia Veloce’…

’I was both surprised and disappointed but in retrospect I had expected too much and had been too hard on the young man. I had treated him as I would a son and no doubt Martin thought ‘the son’ had had a lucky escape. Sadly I had planned to take Martin to Maranello where I was sure Mike Parkes would have got him a drive at Le Mans and he would eventually have graduated to F1.

However, instead of telling me he’d been waiting for this chance and had his bags packed, Martin said he didn’t fancy Le Mans with its dangerous mix of cars and drivers and thank you but no thanks. I still consider to this day Martin would have achieved a successful career with Ferrari and we have often joked about what might have been. Martin argues that he has all his arms and legs in place and that his successive Australian Championships in 1966 and 1967 fulfilled his motor racing ambitions. It was twelve years before we were to speak again and it was the LM which brought us together’.

symmons grid 1966

Front row of the Symmons Plains, Tas 1966 ‘Gold Star’ grid. #7 the winning ex-Clark Lotus 32B Climax of Greg Cusack, #5 Brabham BT11A Climax of Kevin Bartlett and on the near side Spencer in his Brabham BT11A Climax. The nose of John Harveys’ Brabham BT14 Lotus/Ford TC is on row 2. Cusack won from Harvey and John McCormack, Brabham BT4 Climax. (oldracephotos/David Keep)

 

martin WF

Martin on the way to 6th place in the SV Brabham BT11A ‘Warwick Farm 100′ Tasman race 13 February 1966 won by Clarks’ Lotus 39 Climax. This is not long before Martin left SV for Bob Jane Racing, this same chassis ‘IC-4-64’ won his 1966/7 Gold Star titles. (Autopics.com.au Collection)

As Spencer says he left SV and Sydney to join Bob Jane Racing in Melbourne, both Shell sponsored teams at the time and a controversial move albeit a very successful one for both driver and team…

Jane acquired the Brabham BT11A Climax Spencer had been racing for SV, it was this car in which he won the Gold Star in 1966 and 1967. His toughest competitor was Kevin Bartlett in a similar car entered by Alec Mildren, the pair having many close dices with Bartlett famously setting the first over 100mph lap of Bathurst during their Gold Star encounter at Mt Panorama in 1967.

spencer

A touch of understeer for Spencer in his Bob Jane Brabham BT11, ‘Hordern Trophy’, Warwick Farm in December 1966. Race won by Frank Gardner from Kevin Bartlett. This shot is from a ‘period’ Shell magazine ad. (Spencer Lambert Collection)

In 1967 Repco’s 2.5 litre Tasman ‘740 Series’ V8’s powered the cars of Greg Cusack (SV Brabham BT23A), Leo Geoghegan (Lotus 39) and John Harvey (Brabham BT14 ) even though these cars were all competitive they lacked the consistent reliability which prevented Repco ever achieving a Gold Star Series win…Martins’ Climax engined Brabham won 2 rounds, winning his second title by 7 points from Cusack, his replacement at Scuderia Veloce and promptly retired.

Years later he re-established his relationship with McKay as he outlined above, he owned a share in McKays’ LM for a while and raced a range of exotic racing cars in historic racing in both the US and Europe. He still lives in Australia and is in happy retirement with a large extended family to keep him busy…and the occasional competition drive.

martin and mckay

Spencer Martin and David McKay pictured on 27 October 2004. Chris Haigh took this shot having just taken David for a lap of Wakefield Park, Goulburn, NSW in McKay’s original Jaguar Mk1 ‘The Grey Pussy’. David died on December 26 2004 at 83 of cancer. (Chris Haigh)

Etcetera…

longford grid lm

Spencer Martin stands by the front ‘guard of the SV 250LM, his second meeting in the car, Longford Tasman meeting February 1965. Yellow car is the Mildren Maserati, driven by Ralph Sach (built by Rennmax’ Bob Britton on his Lotus 19 jig) the yellow shirted Mildren mechanics are (L) Stewart Randall and (R) Glen Abbey, the latter behind many Mildren/Gardner/Bartlett/Stewart victories. Driver behind the Fazz perhaps Les Howard. (oldracephotos.com/David Keep)

 

martin brabham surfers

Martin leading and winning the Surfers Paradise Gold Star round in 1966. Shot taken below Repco Hill, Brabham BT11A Climax. (John Stanley)

Jackie Stewart contested the above, Surfers’ Gold Star 1966 race, this article may be of interest to some in his ‘one-off’ Brabham BT11A Climax drive…https://primotipo.com/2015/02/13/jackie-stewart-at-surfers-paradise-speed-week-1966-brabham-bt11a-climax-and-ferrari-250lm/

mc kay lm longford 1965

The ‘Guvnor David McKay steers his 250LM through the Longford paddock in March 1965, the second meeting for the Ferrari driven by Martin. Graham Hill drove the SV Brabham BT11A Climax in the final ’65 Tasman race, the AGP, to 4th place, Bruce McLaren won in a Cooper T79 Climax. (Ellis French)

 

symmons grid 67 martin brabham

Martin being congratulated before the start of the Gold Star race at Symmons in November 1967. DNF with cam follower failure, race won by Greg Cusack, his replacement at Scuderia Veloce, in a Brabham BT23 A Repco. #2 is Garrie Coopers’ Elfin Mono Ford TC. Its Martins’ final race of ‘his serious career’, he had wrapped up the Gold Star for the 2nd time in succession and retired, the car driven by John Harvey for Bob Jane Racing from then. (oldracephotos.com/David Keep)

 

martin lakeside barbham 65

Martin in the SV Brabham BT11A ahead of Leo Geoghegans’ Lotus 32 Ford 1.5 TC, Lakeside ‘Gold Star’ race July 1965. Martin won from Leo and John McDonalds’ Cooper T70 Climax. (The Roaring Season/Bruce Wells)

 

martin tassie brabham

Car owner, the stocky, strong Bob Jane tests the rear spring rates…whilst driver Martin does his best to ignore the chief. Symmons Plains Gold Star round November 1966. Brabham BT11A Climax, ‘box is Hewland HD5. (Ellis French)

 

Spencer Martin 2006 Tasman Revival

Spencer pictured beside the Brabham BT23D Alfa Romeo raced by Frank Gardner in the ’68 Tasman and then Kevin Bartlett to Gold Star success in 1968. Car restored by Paul Moxham and driven by Spencer here at the Eastern Creek, NSW Tasman Revival Meeting in December 2006. (Stephen Dalton Collection)

 

Spencer Martin Catalina

Spencer Martin signed program of the Catalina Park cover on which his Holden starred! (Stephen Dalton Collection)

Bibliography…

‘David McKay Memorial Rally 2012: Rally Guide’, ‘ David McKays’ Scuderia Veloce’ David McKay, The Nostalgia Forum

Photo and Other Credits…

John Ellacott, Bruce Wells, autopics/Richard Austin, The Roaring Season, Chris Haigh Collection, Racing Car News, Heinz Federbusch, Ellis French, John Stanley, Racing Car News, Chris Haigh

Lindsay Ross of Oldracephotos http://www.oldracephotos.com/content/home/ for the use of the shots by David Keep

David Blanch of Autopics Collection  http://autopics.com.au/

Stephen Dalton Collection, Spencer Lambert Collection

Tailpiece…

(oldracephotos.com/DKeep)

Spencer alights from the Jane Brabham BT11A in the Longford pits 1967.

John Sawyer standing at left with two Firestone guys in attendance. It looks serious but in a relaxed kinda way doesn’t it?

Finito…