AMONG the annual awards presented by the BRDC this year are: BRDC Gold Star, Derek Bell who also receives the Richard Seaman Trophy and the Earl Howe Trophy; BRDC Silver Star, Richard Longman; John Cobb Trophy, Tom Walkinshaw; Graham Hill Trophy, Derek Warwick and the Fairfield Trophy, Martin Brundle. • * •
The first auction conducted by Onslow’s of Winchester (0962-75411) saw some remarkable bids for books. A lot consisting of “Motor Racing With Mercedes-Benz” (George Monkhous), “Motoring Sport” (Stuck and Burgaller) and “My Husband, The Motor Racer” (Rosmeyer and Beinhorn) realised £210. A programme for the 1955 Mille Migla, together with two Indianapolis programmes, realised £230 and “The Hat Trick” a booklet on Bentley’s 1929 Le Mans success, £240.
A complete, bound, run of MOTOR SPORT Vols 1-59 fetched £5,700. • • •
Motor Circuit Developments, in conjunction with the BRSCC, has announced a new racing series for 1985, Thundersaloons. Heavily modified saloon cars will be encouraged though they most be built around standard steel shells and not, as happens often in Super Saloons, purpose-built spaceframes or single-seater derived monocoques.
Each race in the eight-race series will be a separate event, not part of a championship, and each will have a prize fund of £2,509. Races will be run over distances of 50-75 miles and there will be mandatory pit stops and driver changes. • • •
Nissan has introduced a form of active suspension on its Bluebird range. Details are sketchy but, though undoubtedly a “first”, the system appears not to be as sophisticated as the one currently under development by Lotus Cars in conjunction with the Cranfield Institute, though doubtless the company’s next stage is well in hand. There are no current plans to bring cars fitted with the system to Britain. • • •
Experienced racing drivers who are considering running in Formula Turbo Ford may try a car at Brands Hatch before making the commitment. The cost is £100 for three sessions totalling 20 laps. Telephone 0474-872331. Among constructors which have announced they will be building cars for F3000 are: Lola, March, Martini, Minardi, Ralt and Williams. Flat bottomed Fl chassis
will also be eligible. If every team and driver who claims to be seriously considering the formula actually stitches together a deal, there will have to be qualifying and heats. One Italian magazine claims that nearly 100 Italians alone plan to be in F3000 in 1985!
By finishing second in the final round of the American Indycar Championship, at Las Vagas, Mario Andretti (Lola-Cosworth T800) won his first national title for 15 years. Former champion, Tom Sneva (March-C,osworth 84C) won at Las Vegas and finished runner-up in the championship. Lola and March cars dominated the entire series and every point was won by a driver using a Cosworth DFX engine. World Rally Champion Stig Blomqvist will race at the Motoquip British Rallycross
Grand Prix at Brands Hatch on December 8/9. • • •
Some sanity has been injected into FF1600 racing at last. A new 1,600cc championship organised by the RAC Motor Sports Association and sponsored by Townsend Thoresen and run on nine British circuits will become effectively a British National Championship. In order to bring this about the BARC and Motor Circuits Developments have voluntarily withdrawn their own national championships which, of late, have suffered as a result of too few competitors chasing too many titles.
Regional, junior and one-circuit championships will continue as before. * * *
Following the recent Birmingham “on the streets” parade, the city council has voted by 90 to 13 to support an annual road race. The next move is to lodge a Private Members Bill in the next session of Parliament and if that is successful, a race could take place in 1986. * * *
Ford is close to completing a mid-engined 2.1-litre 4-cylinder turbocharged sports racing car which complies with both IMSA and Group C regulations. This replaces the front-engined Mustang GTP project. The car, which could be seen at Le Mans in 1986, is an American project in conjunction with Zakspeed-USA. It appears to round off a massive commitment by Ford to almost every major championship in the world. • • •
The Renault Fl team will run on Goodyear tyres in 1985.