People Preview -- key historic players in 2005

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Peter Williams — March 761

The car is all in bits at the moment being rebuilt by Nick Foy. I’ll certainly do four or five Grand Prix Masters weekends, if not all of them.

“The car is chassis 5, which was used mostly as a spare in 1976. It did run in the German GP and Ronnie Peterson actually led the race for a while. In Monaco it ran with Monaco Fine Art sponsorship and the same guy still sponsors it today!

“The speed of the car was very good last year. We didn’t finish all the races, but we were on pole several times and at Pau we won both races.

“I’d love to win at Pau again — it’s where I first drove an F1 car three years ago. It’s a tremendous place and a different challenge.”

***

Ollie Crosthwaite — Cooper Bobtail, Gemini Mk4

“I’ll do mostly HGPCA drum-braked sportscar races and some Gentleman Drivers races in the Cooper Bobtail. I like to do the international races.

“Hopefully I’ll start with Pau, and Porto looks like it is going to be fantastic. I’ll do Spa and Oulton Park and hopefully I’ll get a run at Goodwood.

“I might do some Formula Junior as well. I’ve got a rear-engined Gemini Mk 4. I’ve raced it about three times but I’m a bit tall for it. If I can fit in it, I’ll run it. If not, Simon Diffey’s going to drive it a couple of times.

“I work in the family business, Crosthwaite & Gardiner. Racing is a bit of fun and gets me out of the office. Time and money are always the big problems.”

***

John Dunham — March 712

“I’ve got the March 712 that Chris Fox owned for a number of years. The car’s not been raced much in the UK: it’s now in Formula Atlantic specification and I’m going to be doing the Jochen Rindt European F2 Trophy.

“I think Euro F2 will go from strength to strength: you just can’t get a more competitive series. Fredy Kumschick is the man for the job in running it.

“The car was totally rebuilt last year and I’m really looking forward to the season. It brings a smile to my face just thinking about racing in F2. We’ve got a great series of venues like Monza and Spa — they’re classic tracks.

“I’ve won the class title before and I’d like to deliver good results this year.”

***

Helen Malkie — Chevron B19, Shadow DN9

“This year I’m going to be racing our Chevron B19 in Orwell Supersports. I might do the Chevron race at Oulton Park in August, but it depends if I’ve got time as I’m also organising the Chevron 40th celebrations. I would like to do Spa as well, because I’ve held the lap record there.

“I’ll also run the B19 at the Shelsley Walsh hillclimb in September. It’s a very big year for Chevron and getting a race at Laguna Seca is a big achievement. But it’s a week before Oulton Park, so there isn’t time to fly cars out and back.

“We might bring out the Shadow DN9 if I can get it back into Regazzoni colours in 1978 specification. I last raced that at the British GP two or three years ago.”

***

Jon Shipman — Crosslé 9S

“We’ve very busy at work at the moment, but despite that we are going to do the Van de Velde six-hour race at Dijon and then the Spa Classic Six Hours in the Crosslé.

“Winning Spa last year was very special. I’d wanted to win that for five years and we rebuilt the Crosslé for that race. I think we should be in with a shout again this year, but in an event that long anything can go wrong.

“I’m then looking at shipping some cars to the States to race at Sebring, Watkins Glen and Daytona. These days it costs so much to race in Europe that it is almost cheaper to race in the US. The dollar rate at the moment makes it quite attractive. We’ll probably ship several cars out at the end of September.”

***

Duncan Pittaway — GN Vitesse, Monarch

“My approach to motorsport is very much one of enjoyment. The VSCC has some great motorsport in a social atmosphere. I’ll use the GN Vitesse in sprints, hillclimbs and races; I hold the sportscar record at Wiscombe Park.

“Oulton Park is the big news and I’m really looking forward to that, as well as the Frazer Nash/GN race at Cadwell. It’s the best circuit for that type of car!

“I’m also very keen on the Edwardian races, and Mallory Park in July is absolutely fantastic. Turning into Gerards at 100mph in these cars is just brilliant. I’ve got a 1913 Monarch for that race.

“I’ve got a 1965 Plymouth Barracuda that I hope to have ready for racing at the end of the year and also do some trials next winter in a GN with a 3-litre V-Twin engine!”

***

Nelson Rowe — Crosslé 20F

“We’ve built up a new Crosslé 20F for Historic Formula Ford 1600 this season and we’re selling the ex-Mike Whatley car that we raced last year. We’ve got a new engine and we’ve rebuilt the gearbox and done some other bits and pieces to the car.

“I’m very much looking forward to the season, but I’m a vet and getting weekends off is quite difficult. But I hope to do all the rounds. My dad Richard is beavering away on the car — he is the top mechanic and it’s his hobby as much as it is mine.

“It’s a different beast to the Caterham Superlight I raced in 2003 and it takes me back to karting — you just can’t waste power. I’d love to drive something more powerful at some point.”

***

Peter Schleifer — Lola T222, March 707

“I will do the Orwell International Supersports Cup again in 2005 with the Lola T222. We had some race wins last season and I hope to win again this year The car was originally on display at the 1971 London Motor Show and was raced by Jo Bonnier and Vic Elford in Interserie events and then did hillclimbs in Switzerland! It was stored for about 25 years before I found it and restored it in 1997.

But I have also now got the ex-Chris Amon March 707 in STP colours. That car has not been raced for five or six years and I want to see it racing in Supersports again. I really want to race both these cars, but I really love my Lola — somehow it suits me! I may put someone else into the March.

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