WITH the announcement that the STP Corporation are financing the March racing team, with Amon and Siffert driving, the initials STP are likely to be very much in the news. President of the American STP Corporation is Anthony Granatelli, who has been backing American racing cars for a long time, and who backed Lotus at Indianapolis until last year. The firm made what we call “jollop”, that you put in your engine to keep away all the evils that ordinary oils will bring with them, and the initials stand for Scientifically Treated Petroleum in the case of the product they sell, to which most people reply: “What does that mean?” Which usually leaves the salesman a bit short on speeches. The Company itself use the initials for Scientifically Tested Products, which means about as much as Scientifically Treated Petroleum.
However, Granatelli has a keen sense of humour and realised that the official explanation of STP was not very convincing, so when asked about the initials at Indianapolis in 1963, when his three STP Studebaker Novi V8 specials were on the starting grid, he said: “Studebaker’s Tickled Pink.” Later, it is claimed that Jim Clark said STP stood for “Spinning Takes Practice” after the classic Indianapolis race in which he spun twice without hitting anything, which few people have achieved. STP are encouraging people to make up their own slogans for the initials and no doubt March Engineering Ltd. hope they stand for “Siffert Takes Pole”.-D. S. J.