The RAC Rally of Great Britain

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Just 14 days after this issue of Motor Sport is published the biggest motor sporting event in this country will get under way, and I say that in spite of the certainty that D.S.J. will take me up on it. The truth is that 360 competitors in 180 cars, their attendant mechanics and trade supporters, many hundreds of officials, the various press, radio and television interests, and the many, many thousands of spectators who throng the forests and time controls each November add up to far more humanity than is ever involved with a Grand Prix.

Without any glamorous side effects, such as sunshine over the Acropolis, wild life in Africa or rolling snow plains in Lapland, the RAC, wet, cold and murky as it usually is, attracts a generous entry every year. This year the attraction is greater than it has ever been. There are full works teams coming from Lancia, Ford, Porsche, Alpine-Renault, Saab, Datsun, Svenska-Opel, Fiat and Wartburg, with a few supported cars from Skoda for good measure.

At the moment Porsche leads the International Championship for Constructors. Only three points behind is Alpine. Naturally both teams are coming in strength to defend and challenge respectively. From Britain the only factory team is from Ford, with three Escorts. The Opel team does not really signify the entry of General Motors into sporting activities. The team is run from Sweden, where the GM Dealer Association has had a competitions department for many years. Nowadays the factory in Germany has an interest and the Swedish team’s manager, Ragnar Ekelund, now has responsibilities throughout Europe on behalf of the factory.

The only time the Swedish Opels have been seen in Britain was in 1966 when a team of Rekords came for the RAC Rally of that year and a private entrant came for the London Rally of that year.

They have learned a lot since then, and the 2-litre Rallye Kadetts which they now use are certainly not sluggards.

The Saab team is the most faithful of all the overseas outfits. Indeed, in the past decade they haven’t missed one—and they have the best success record, too, with three consecutive wins to Carlsson’s credit. The Datsuns are coming for the second year. In 1969 they had three 1600SSS saloons which were lacking in the power necessary for a winning effort, but were so incredibly reliable that they ran faultlessly and picked up the Manufacturers’ Team Prize.

Rather than provide one of their saloons with more power Nissan-Datsun decided this year to send three of their 2.5-litre sports cars, the 240-Z. They are fast and handle in much the same way as the splendid Big Healeys. But their reliability is an unknown quantity, and notwithstanding Datsun’s general reputation for ruggedness their ability must remain to be seen.

The Lancia team has had a pretty bad year, having experienced retirement after retirement, particularly in the early months. But they did win the rally last year with Harry Kallstrom becoming European Champion, so they have a definite goal to aim at. Furthermore their last rally was Portugal’s TAP Rally, and winning that must have blown away the despondency of the past year and put them in the right frame of mind for November.

The Alpine-Renaults, the ultra-lightweight rear-engined cars from Dieppe, represent an unknown quantity just like the Datsuns. In past years they have always been regarded as cars for tarmac rallies and that is how their team administrators treated them. But this year they won both Acropolis and Sanremo rallies, neither of which can be regarded as smooth by any standards. But 20-odd special stages in Greek sunshine do not match up to nearly 80 through the rough, stony tracks of Britain’s State Forests.

The RAC is harder on cars than most events and the speculation at the moment concerns the ability of the Alpines to stay screwed together whilst going fast enough to challenge the Porsches. Alpines have already been across the Channel in order to have experience of rough British roads and their first visit resulted in a few broken pieces here and there. Since then they have made one or two trips back to Dieppe and they now appear to be satisfied that their cars are strong enough. With plastic bodyshells chances can’t he taken.

To assist readers with the identification of factory cars as they travel around the country between November 14th and Novemhei 18th appended below is a list showing cars and drivers entered officially by factories. Of course, last-minute changes are not impossible.—G. P.

HF Squadra Corse Lancia

14: H. Kallstrom/G. Haggboom, 21: S. Lampinen/J. Davenport, 28: S. Munari/T.Nash, 35: S. Barbasio/A.N. Other

Ford of Britain

15: H. Mikkola/G. Palm, 22: R. Clark/J. Porter, 29: T. Makkinen/H. Lidden

Porsche Systems Engineering

16: B. Waldegard/L. Helmer, 23: A. Andersson/B. Thorszelius, 30: G. Larrousse/M. Wood, 37: C. Haldi/G. Chappuis

Saab-Scania

17: H. Lindberg/A.N. Other, 18: S. Blomqvist/B. Reinicke, 31: C. Orrenius/L. Persson, 38: T. Trana/S. Andreason

Nissan-Datsun

18: R. Aaltonen/P.Easter, 25: T. Fall/G. Phillips, 32: E. Herrman/H. Schuller

Alpine-Renault

19: O. Andersson/Mrs. E. Andersson, 26: J-L. Therier/M. Callewaert, 33: J-P. Nicolas/D. Stone

Svenska-Opel

20: O. Eriksson//H. Johansson, 27: A. Kullang/D. Karlsson, 34: J. Henriksson/L-E. Carlstrom, 40: L-B. Nasenius/B. Cederberg, 44: G. Blomqvist/Mrs. L. Blomqvist

Fiat
(p>Paganelli and Trombotto will each drive a 124 Spider

Wartburg

Three works cars have been entered.