Posts Tagged ‘Lorenzo Bandini’

Pete Makeham and the King Alfa Spyder at Reims (B King)

‘What you can do with a dodgy camera…

The story really begins in May 1965 in Aden in the Federation of South Arabia (now Yemen) where the ship on which I was travelling as the ships doctor made its first landfall after leaving Australian several weeks earlier.

Aden, then as now, was a hell-hole, but I was advised by the experienced ship’s crew that there were bargains to be had. Hence the cheap, and supposedly new, Practica IVb SLR camera- ‘state of the art’. But something was seriously wrong; was it a reject that found its way to Aden? Anyway, its deficiencies are my excuse for the poor quality of the photographs accompanying this article.

After two European Tours in a VW and then a Minivan, it was time for better things- or at least my future wife thought so- and bought a three year old Alfa Romeo Giulia Spyder 1600. My late lamented friend Pater Makeham and I set off with our first destination being Reims for the Grand Prix de l’ACF. The Alfa gremlins set in early, and with no generator charge, our arrival in the Oort of Dover was lit by the equivalent of two candles.

We camped that night outside Reims on the top of a hill and were able to roll-start the car. It was a Saturday morning and as we approached Reims we had no idea how we would resolve our problem- then suddenly we were confronted by a large Alfa Romeo badge  hanging in the centre of the street- a quick left turn and we were in a large Alfa workshop. In our best French we said ‘dynamo-kaput’ which was sufficient to gain the necessary attention.’

Lorenzo Bandini’s Ferrari 312 being attended to in the Alfa Romeo dealership, Reims (B King)

 

#22 is Mike Parkes’ 312- World Champions in 1966 almost certainly had the kept Surtees within the Scuderia Ferrari, ‘Ifs, Buts and Maybes’ don’t count however (B King)

‘We then noticed that half the workshop was devoted to the Ferrari Formula 1 Team. Hence the grainy images with the Practica. While the GP cars sat idle, it seemed that the whole Ferrari team were devoting their attention to designer Mauro Forghieri’s road car- I think it was a just released 330GTC. With much revving, Mauro would take of around the block, only to arrive back with the car misfiring. About six red-suited mechanics would put their heads under the bonnet and the procedure would be repeated.’

King’s Alfa outside the Champagne cellars in 1966 (B King)

‘I think our problem was resolved before Mauro’s and we were able to depart for a tour of the Champagne cellars. Perhaps if the team had devoted more time to the racing cars, Lorenzo Bandini might not have surrendered his lead to Jack Brabham because of a failed throttle cable!’

Lorenzo Bandini seeks to sort his throttle linkage problem after completing 32 laps- he led the race from Brabham and Parkes to this point (unattributed)

‘What a day it was to go to the races with Jack and Denny first and second in in the F2 support race in Brabham Hondas, and Jack winning the race in the ‘All Australian Repco Brabham’ designed by Ron Tauranac.

We were on the outside of the track at ‘Calvaire’, the fast bend at the end of Pit Straight and Jack was the only driver taking that corner at full noise. This was the last GP to be held at that wonderful circuit.’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Toto Roche drops the flag and makes his famous leap out of the way, Mike Parkes and Lorenzo Bandini in Ferrari 312’s sandwich the just departed John Surtees in a Cooper T81 Maserati. That’s Jochen Rindt’s Cooper on row two.

(unattributed)

Brabham speeds to victory in his Brabham BT19 Repco, his championship steed throughout 1966- famously the first driver to win a GP in a car of his own design and manufacture- noting the contribution of Ron Tauranac, Motor Racing Developments and Repco Brabham Engines in relation thereto!

Roche, below, flag in hand, pushes the winning car whilst Brabham acknowledges the plaudits of the knowledgeable French crowd. Mike Parkes’ Ferrari 312 was second, Denny third in a Brabham BT20 Repco and Jochen Rindt, Cooper T81 Maserati, fourth.

(unattributed)

‘I was able to buy the Alfa from the proceeds of working 110 hour shifts at Manchester Royal Infirmary. Another benefit of MRI was having access to the Nurses Home, housing many hundred nurses and from where I found my wife to be.

I also enjoyed our proximity to Oulton Park- where I was a regular attendee from 1965-1968. My photos with the Practica were improving; I found the light meter gave more accurate readings if I pointed it to the ground.’

Cor! says the young motor cyclist with the camera. Brabham’s BT20 Repco with new ‘740 Series’ Repco 3 litre V8 making its first race appearance. Brabham’s definitive 1967 chassis, Tauranac’s brand new BT24 is still several races away. Oulton Park 1967- ripper shot just oozes atmosphere of the (chilly) day (B King)

Daily Express Spring Cup, Oulton Park 15 April 1967…

The first European F1 race of 1967 was the ‘Race of Champions’ at Brands Hatch in early March, the race was won by Dan Gurney’s Eagle Mk1 Weslake from Lorenzo Bandini and Jo Siffert in Ferrari 312 and Cooper T81 Maserati respectively. Dan took wins in both of the two heats and the final, wonderful stuff and unfortunately a race which somewhat flattered to deceive.

The last chance for the teams to race test their cars before the European season championship opener at Monaco in May was the Spring Cup at Oulton, where Bob’s photos were taken.

Tony Rudd fusses over his complex and superb, BRM P83 H16. The engine’s only championship win was Clark’s Lotus 43 victory at Watkins Glen in late 1966 (B King)

 

Bruce McLaren sits on his Rover 3500 whilst the boys fettle his F2 based GP McLaren M4B BRM 2 litre V8, by the years end he was using the BRM P101 V12 but his saviour was the Ford DFV which was available to teams other than Lotus from 1968 (B King)

Jackie Stewart popped the BRM P83 H16 on pole from Denny Hulme and John Surtees- in Brabham BT20 Repco and Honda RA273. Brabham and Mike Spence were back on row two in the other BT20 and H16.

Denny won both heats in a portent of his season to come and Jack Brabham the final from Denny, Surtees, Jack Oliver’s F2 Lotus 41B Cosworth FVA, Bruce McLaren’s McLaren M4B BRM V8, Mike Spence’s BRM P83, Bob Anderson’s Brabham BT11 Climax FPF and Graham Hill’s Lotus 33 BRM. Stewart failed to finish in the other BRM after a collision.

The BRO pit with Jack’s 740 V8 engined BT20 front and centre. Circa 340 bhp by the seasons end- just enough to prevail in 1967 aided by Lotus 49 teething pain unreliability. Gearbox is Hewland DG300. Denny’s car devoid of bodywork behind (B King)

The winds of change blew at Zandvoort with the first race of the Lotus 49 Ford DFV at the Dutch Grand Prix but Bob’s photos reasonably convey, with the exception of the Ferrari’s who did not enter the Spring Cup, most of the the state of GP play in early 1967.

(B King)

Surtees’ magnificent, powerful, but oh-so-heavy Honda RA273 V12.

By the seasons end the lighter RA300 ‘Hondola’- the monocoque chassis a variation on Lola’s T90 Indianapolis car, was raced to victory in the Italian Grand Prix, the popular Brit taking a famous victory for the car in a last lap, last corner fumble with Jack Brabham in his BT24 Repco.

(B King)

Etcetera…

Other reading…

1966 GP Season; https://primotipo.com/2014/11/13/winning-the-1966-world-f1-championships-rodways-repco-recollections-episode-3/

1966 Ferrari 312; https://primotipo.com/2017/10/26/surtees-ferrari-312-modena-1966/

Brabham Honda F2 Cars; https://primotipo.com/2015/07/30/xxxii-grand-prix-de-reims-f2-july-1966-1-litre-brabham-hondas/

H16 Engine; https://primotipo.com/2015/02/17/jim-clark-taking-a-deep-breath-lotus-43-brm/

Bruce McLaren’s 1966/7 GP Cars; https://primotipo.com/2016/10/07/mclarens-19667-f1-cars/

(B King Collection)

Bugatti Afterthought: Reims 1929…

Classic Bob King ‘…and I just found this photo from 1929- if you should wish to make a comment about Bugatti being my real thing- it is such a good photo’- and indeed it is a marvellous shot!

The fifth GP de la Marne was staged at Reims over 400 km on 7 July and won by Philippe Etancelin in a Bugatti T35C in 2 hours 54 minutes 14 seconds. The cars above are those of (L-R) Juan Zanelli T35B second, Robert Gauthier T35C fourth, Rene Cadet T35 sixth and another T35 of Derrancourt, seventh.

Credits…

Bob King, Getty Images, Team Dan, silhouet.com

Tailpiece: Bandini, Surtees, Brabham- Reims start 1966…

(Getty)

Finito…

(Joel Wakely)

Two of my favourite drivers are Lorenzo Bandini and Australian Gold Star champion, Spencer Martin but it was quite a surprise to see them in the same shot- Lorenzo in a Cooper and Spencer a Holden…

Joel Wakely’s Boomerang Service Station at Concord, inner-western Sydney was well known amongst Australian motor-racing aficionados by February 1962 as builders of one of the fastest ‘Appendix J’ Holden 48-215/FX sedans in the land peddled very hard by up-and comer Spencer Martin.

The young Sydneysider was soon to race Tasman cars like Bandini’s Cooper for Australian racer/journalist/patron David McKay’s Scuderia Veloce, but that period was still a year or so away. Click here for Spencer’s own account of his racing career;

https://primotipo.com/2015/04/30/spencer-martin-australian-gold-star-champion-19667/

Bandini himself was also on the rise, his racing in the southern summer sun of ’62 was part of Mimmo Dei’s grand plan to give the young Italian some racing miles aboard his Scuderia Centro Sud T53 Cooper in the European ‘off-season’, to get him razor sharp for the rigours of the coming season back home. The 2.8 litre Maserati engined Cooper was very much a ‘big-car’, F1 by then was a 1.5 litre formula, so the experience was valuable for him. It was a successful strategy back then and still is- the New Zealand Toyota Racing Series every summer is a place young racers look to keep themselves race fit and help thrust their careers forward. Click here for my article about Bandini;

https://primotipo.com/2015/03/24/lorenzo-bandinicooper-t53-maserati-warwick-farm-sydney-1962/

The car in the middle of the shot is the gorgeous Clive Adams designed Prad Holden sportscar styled along the lines of a Maserati 300S. Jack Pryor built the chassis and Stan Brown it’s shapely body. Spencer Martin bought, developed and raced the car successfully after Adams sold it.

And so it came to pass that Bandini’s Cooper was operated from the Boomerang Servo at the behest of BP, who supported Centro Sud. It made good sense as the garage was only 25Km from Warwick Farm, near Liverpool on Sydney’s then western outskirts. Wakely recalls that ‘So many people heard about the car at the garage and came down to have a look we had to have crowd control!’

Centro Sud were not exactly renowned for the detail presentation of their cars but even so I thought Lorenzo’s car looked a bit tatty. Perhaps the reason is that it isn’t the car he raced!

Have a look yourself at the photo below, it isn’t the same car. The inlet and exhaust sides of the Maserati engine are on the opposite sides to the Cooper in shot, apart from the body differences. I think the car above is a spare T51 Cooper, one of two acquired by Dei from Coopers in 1959 and raced in both F1 in 1959/60 and the Intercontinental Formula in 1961. Still, that’s my theory it may not be right! So, the question for my Australian friends is which Cooper chassis is Bandini sitting aboard? A Centro Sud spare or another car based that weekend at Concord’s Temple of Speed?…

I love these mysteries, but I like the answers even more…

Lorenzo Bandini in the Centro Sud Cooper T53 Maserati during the ‘Warwick Farm 100’, 4 February 1962. Compare and contrast with the car in the opening shot (John Ellacott)

Bibliography/Photo Credits…

oldracingcars.com, sergent.com, Joel Wakely, John Ellacott

Other Reading…

My other article about Spencer Martin, and the iconic Ferrari 250LM he raced for David McKay

https://primotipo.com/2014/07/03/pete-geoghegan-ferrari-250lm-6321-bathurst-easter-68/

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Bonnier/Abate Porsche 718GTR in the Sicilian Hills. (Yves Debraine)

Jo Bonnier victorious in the Porsche 718GTR together with Carlo Abate…

The 718 Porsche was a development of the earlier, successful 550A/RS61, the GTR coupe the ultimate expression of the 718 was developed for the 1961 Le Mans classic. It was fitted with either the earlier 1.5 litre 4 cylinder or as here, a 2 litre variant of Porsches’ flat 8, quad cam F1 engine developing around 210bhp all of which hit the road through a 5 speed gearbox. Disc brakes were used, torsion bar suspension, the car very light at circa 570Kg.

The 904 followed the 718 as Porsches’ next racer hence the family resemblance…

Very successful, 718 variants won Targa in 1959/60/63 and the Sebring 12 Hour enduro in 1960.

The Bandini/Scarfiotti/Mairesse Ferrari Dino 196SP looked a certain winner until Willy lost the car on the last lap, he recovered but fell short of victory by 12 seconds.

It wasn’t Willy Mairesse’ race, he had started in a 250P 3 litre 12 cylinder Ferrari co-driven by Ludovico Scarfiotti and managed to hit a bump which flattened a fuel line, ultimately putting the car out of the race.

John Surtees then blotted his copybook, chucking the leading 250P co driven by Mike Parkes into the bushes leaving Lorenzo Bandini to uphold Ferrari honours with the 2 litre V6 Dino.

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Scarfiotti/Bandini/Mairesse Ferrari Dino 196SP. Nowhere quite surpasses the rugged majesty of this place? (Yves Debraine)

Scarfiotti was enlisted to assist in the Dino to uphold Maranellos’ honour, the Bonnier Porsche very competitive in the cool, experienced and fast hands of the Swede.

Abate wasn’t as quick as Bonnier, slowly the Ferrari gained the lead, Ferrari team-manager Eugenio Dragoni putting Mairesse into the car as a fresh driver for the last two laps. A fresh driver but perhaps not the most ‘calm’!

The Sicilian weather deteriorated, rain began to fall and poor Mairesse goofed under brakes as he approached the finishing straight and off the road he went. He gathered up the car, dragging the engine cover along the ground as Bonnier looked on, the Ferrari just falling short of Bonniers time by 12 seconds…

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The Ferrari boys watch their clocks! Bonnier has finished, it’s all down to Willy Mairesse as the weather deteriorates. Bandini in the pale blazer beside the ‘Wallopers’ and Scarfiotti to the left of Lorenzo. (Bernard Cahier)

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Mairesse finishes the race dragging the engine cover of his Ferrari behind …(Bernard Cahier)

196 sp cutaway

Ferrari Dino 196SP: multi-tubular spaceframe chassis, 690Kg, 1983cc 60 degree V6, SOHC per bank, 3 Weber carbs. 210bhp @ 7500rpm, 5 speed transaxle. (Unattributed)

targa 'motor racing' mag

‘Ludovico Scarfiotti shakes the quiet Sicilian village of Campofelice in his 3 litre Ferrari 250P’, the first of 2 Ferraris’ crashed by Willy Mairesse, this one on on lap 4… (Stephen Dalton Collection)

Bibliography…

Automobile Year 11, Yves Debraine, Bernard Cahier, Stephen Dalton Collection

 

 

bandini warwick farm 1962 cooper maser

(John Ellacott)

Lorenzo Bandini heading for fourth place in his ‘Centro Sud’ Cooper T53 Maserati, ‘Warwick Farm 100’, February 1962…

The race was won by Stirling Moss in Rob Walkers’ Cooper T53 Climax from Bruce McLaren in a similar car.

bandini portrait 67

Lorenzo Bandini 1967. (Unattributed)

Bandini joined Centro Sud in 1961 making his championship debut at Spa having scored 3rd place in the Non-Championship Pau GP earlier in the season.

He raced in the Southern Summer gaining valuable experience in the powerful F Libre cars raced in Australasia at the time against the Worlds best.

Bandini contested the Warwick Farm International, his only race in Australia but competed in New Zealand at the start of the year coming 5th in the NZ GP at Ardmore and retired at Wigrams airfield circuit and at Teretonga with an oil leak and ignition problems respectively.

Born in 1935, he commenced his racing career on motorcycles, progressing into cars with a borrowed Fiat 1100. He came to the attention of ‘Centro Suds’ Mimmo Dei after Formula Junior successes in Stanguellini and Volpini chassis’ in 1960 and 1961.

bandini brm

Have always thought BRM’s and Cooper’s look great in BRG but they look even better in red!? Lorenzo in his ex-works BRM P57 1.5 V8 in the British GP, Silverstone 1963. An excellent 5th in the race won by Jim Clarks’ Lotus 25 Climax. (Unattributed)

le mans 63

Victorious at Le Mans in 1963 in Ferraris’ first V12 mid engined endurance racer the 250P. He shared the car with fellow Italian Ludovico Scarfiotti. (Unattributed)

Bandini drove his first GP for Ferrari in 1962 but for 1963 drove in their sports car squad, Centro Sud kept him in GP racing campaigning an ex-works BRM P57…Ferrari did enter him in the last 4 GP’s of the season…he also won Le Mans in’63 partnered by Ludovico Scarfiotti in a Ferrari 250P.

For 1964 he partnered John Surtees in the F1 team winning the Austrian GP at Zeltweg, sadly his only Championship GP win.

bandini zeltweg

First in the Austrian GP at Zeltweg in August 1964 ahead of Richie Ginther in a BRM P261 and Bob Anderson, Brabham BT11 Climax…(Unattributed)

bandini germany 1965

Patiently bleeding the brakes of his Ferrari 158 in practice for the German GP, Nurburgring 1965. 6th in the rcae won by Clarks’ Lotus 33 Climax. (Unattributed)

bandini french gp 66

Disappointment on his face, Bandini pulls to the side of the Reims circuit, 1966 French GP. He was in the lead of the race and pulling away, of all things his throttle cable broke, well before the days of potentionometers! Jack Brabham took the lead in his Brabham BT19 Repco and became the first driver to win a race in a car of his own manufacture and name. (Unattributed)

Always competitive in F1, if not an absolute ‘ace’ Bandini was unlucky not to win the 1966 French and US Grands Prix’ when well in the lead of both races , mechanical problems with his 3 litre V12 Ferrari 312 intervening.

p2 targa 65

Famous shot first published in Automobile Year. Lorenzo in the Ferrari P2 he shred with local Nino Vaccarella to win the 1965 Targa Florio. (Automobile Year)

Luckier in sports car racing, in addition to the Le Mans victory, he also won the Targa Florio in 1965 and the Daytona 24 Hours and Monza 1000Km in 1967 racing the superb Ferrari P4 partnered with Chris Amon whom he first met at the NZ GP in 1962, Chris campaigning a Maserati 250F before he came to Europe…

Lorenzo died in a gruesome accident at Monaco in 1967, the fire which took his life accelerating improvements to circuit and driver safety, not the least the abolition of hay-bales with which he collided, fuelling the ensuing fire.

He was an immensely popular driver with his colleagues, the media and fans, 100000 of whom were in the streets surrounding the Reggiolo church in which his funeral was held.

bandini monza p4

Bandini in the gorgeous Ferrari P4 at Monza, 1967 1000Km’s which he won with Chris Amon. The P4 4 litre V12 was outgunned by the 7 litre Fords and Chaparrals that year but still scored some successes. (Unattributed)

le mns 63 poster

Shell ad to celebrate the 1963 Le Mans win. #10 Rodriguez/Penske Ferrari 330LM TRI, #18 P Hill/Bianchi Aston DP215, # 21 victorious Bandini/Scarfiotti Ferrari 250P, # 23 Surtees/Mairesse Ferrari 250P, # 8 McLaren/Ireland Aston Martin DB4 GT

Credits…

John Ellacott, Automobile Year,