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Stewart’s Revival honour

The 40th anniversary of Sir Jackie Stewart’s first grand prix victory will be celebrated at Goodwood’s Revival meeting on September 16-18. The three-time world champion will take the wheel of a Tyrrell as around 25 cars from his career hit the track.

Tyrrell enthusiast John Delane is taking three F1 Tyrrells —001, 002 and 006— to Goodwood. “Jackie can drive one of our cars, and we hope to have members of the Tyrrell family in the cars as well,” says Delane.

Stewart has only driven once at the Revival, when he demonstrated a BRM P261 in 1998. This year he will take part on both Saturday and Sunday to commemorate his first grand prix win in the Italian GP on September 12, 1965.

Stewart’s links with Goodwood go back to 1963 when track manager Robin McKay recommended the young Scot to Ken Tyrrell. Three world titles and 27 grand prix wins followed over the next 10 years.

Cars from throughout Stewart’s racing history will be demonstrated, from the Marcos he started racing at Charterhall through to BRM, Matra and Tyrrell F1 cars. Also on show will be an Ecurie Ecosse Cooper Monaco, the Rover-BRM gas turbine car and a Can-Am Lola.

Stewart remains the period lap record holder at Goodwood, setting a 1min 20.4sec best jointly with Jim Clark in The Sunday Mirror Trophy in April 1965 in a BRM P261.

***

Cooper Bobtail ‘barn-find’

More than 40 years after its last race, a 1955 Cooper Bobtail sportscar is to return to the track.

The car, which Dennis Barthel and Roy Watling-Greenwood drove in the ’55 Goodwood Nine Hours, has been stored since 1966. But now it has been bought by Adrian Rush for Legends Racing and will be rebuilt to race once more. An entry at Goodwood in 2006 is the target.

“It’s a very special ‘barn-find’,” said Rush. “The chassis is complete and the original body can be saved.” After racing into the early 1960s, the car was dismantled and stored in a barn. It remained there until discovered by Rush several years ago.

Rush has made contact with Barthel (now 81), who is delighted that the car will race once more. He recalls going to the Cooper factory in 1955 to help finish building the car, when the factory was flat-out. The Bobtail, registered KNJ 800, came with its original paperwork. Ring 01451 821611 for more details.

***

5000 miles apart

A big contingent of European-based Formula 5000s is expected to travel to New Zealand this winter to contest the 2005/06 Flexoplas NZ Express F5000 Revival Series. Following the visit of nine Kiwi racers to Brands Hatch and Silverstone recently, interest in F5000 is running at record levels: 26 cars made the grid at Silverstone and more than 20 race-ready cars are now based in New Zealand. The five-weekend NZ series kicks off in November at Manfeild before resuming after Christmas for races at Pukekohe, Christchurch, Invercargill and back at Pukekohe to finish in March.

***

Chevron return

The Chevron B29 which Tom Wheatcroft entered in Formula Atlantic in 1975 for Richard Morgan has returned to racing, in the hands of the HSCC’s chairman Chris Sharples.

Chassis 04 had not been used for 20 years until Sharples acquired it and had it re-prepared by Simon Hadfield. Sharples, who has only previously raced Historic FF1600, will campaign the car in Derek Bell Trophy races. It has been finished in period Wheatcroft Racing livery and was recently reunited with Wheatcroft and Morgan at Donington Park.

After Wheatcroft, the car was owned by Ken Bailey and Eddie Jordan, who won the Irish Formula Atlantic title in it.

***

Laing hurt in roll

HRG racer David Laing was seriously injured on the opening lap of the BRDC Historic Sports Car race during the Silverstone Classic meeting.

Laing was making his championship debut in the1947 HRG Le Mans when the car overturned at Copse and slid along the track with the driver trapped underneath.

The race was stopped and rescue services were quickly on hand to attend to Laing. He was taken to hospital at Stoke Mandeville with arm and hand injuries as well as suspected broken ribs.

Eyewitness accounts confirm that no other car was involved, as the HRG was the last in the 37-strong field to turn into Copse for the first time.

***

Key Brabham back

The very first Brabham sportscar returned to Britain for only the second time in 40 years when John Delane raced his BT5 during the Silverstone Classic. The twin cam-engined BT5 is a 1963 car and was originally entered by Ian Walker Racing for Frank Gardner.

It was then exported to the US in1964 and has been there ever since. Now fully restored by Delane, it will run at Goodwood this year, which was the scene of its only other European race in the last four decades. “It’s a wonderful little car,” said Delane.

***

Stars line up:  Who will be at Goodwood…

A gaggle of stars will be in action during the Revival, highlights being the St. Mary’s Trophy Saloon Car race and the RAC TT Celebration.  Still to be confirmed is the Goodwood debut of Dario Franchitti due to race a lightweight E-type in the TT.

Lining up for the TT Celebration will be Sir Stirling Moss (Aston Martin DB4GT),  Jochen Mass (Jaguar E-type), Gerhard Berger (tbd), Emanuele Pirro (Jaguar E-type), Patrick Tambay (AC Cobra), Peter Brock (Chevrolet Corvette), Peter Hardman (Ferrari 330LMB), Tony Jardine (AC Cobra), Perry McCarthy (Aston Martin DB4GT), Tiff Needell (Jaguar E-type), Bobby Rahal (Ferrari 330 LMB), Lyn St James (Shelby Cobra).

Stars entered for the saloon race include:

Alan Jones (Ford Galaxie 500), Sir Stirling Moss (Lotus Cortina), Narain Karthikeyen (Lotus Cortina), René Arnoux (Alfa Romeo GTA), Vitantonio Liuzzi (Plymouth Barracuda), Tiff Needell (Lotus Cortina), Jackie Oliver (Ford Galaxie), Marc Surer (BMW 1800), Rauno Aaltonen (Mini Cooper), Alan Mann (Ford Mustang), Barrie Williams (Mini Cooper), Rowan Atkinson (Mercedes 300SE), Peter Brock (Vauxhall VX4/90), Bobby Rahal (Ford Falcon), John Fitzpatrick (Ford Galaxie), Tony Jardine (Mini Cooper), Rupert Keegan (Alfa Romeo GTA), John Rhodes (MG 1100), Sir John Whitmore (Ford Mustang). 

***

Angoulême under threat

The Circuit des Remparts race meeting on the streets of the French town of Angoulême is under threat following a decision by the local authority to put a 50km/h speed limit on the event.

Although the 2005 Circuit des Remparts will go ahead as planned on the weekend of September 17/18, the organisers fear that this could be the final running if the ruling is not overturned, and they have launched a campaign to save the highly successful event.

Without consulting the event organisers from ACOCRA, the Prefect of the Department announced that he was imposing the restriction for 2006 as he was not prepared to accept responsibility for any accident that might occur. The event still runs over the original ’round the houses’ circuit, which dates back to 1939, and has become a hugely popular fixture on the European classic racing calendar.

“It does seem that the Prefect has not consulted the facts and legal rights of the event to be staged, and he may now be looking for a way out of such a foolish move,” said an event spokesman. “Nevertheless, it has been decided to launch a petition for signatures in support of the race meeting. By his action the Prefect could destroy forever this wonderful event.” More details are available at www.circuit-des-remparts.com.

***

Classic success

The inaugural Silverstone Classic has been hailed a success, and circuit bosses are already planning to make improvements for the 2006 event. Around 30,000 people attended the re-born Silverstone festival at the end of July, and over 500 cars and 700 drivers competed in the17-race weekend.

“I thought the first event was an excellent foundation.” said Richard Phillips, MD of Silverstone Circuits. “The feedback from competitors was tremendous. There are a lot of things we can improve upon, including paddock layout, but we want to keep the informal feel and maintain the accessibility.”

The 2006 Silverstone Classic will run over the weekend of July 28-30, and planning is already underway.

***

Aintree threat

The Aintree Circuit Club has applied to English Heritage to have the former grand prix circuit designated a listed site. This is a final bid to save the track from being lost to construction work for a new grandstand for the horse-racing course with which it shares the site.

The listing inspection was carried out in July as the proposed new stand threatens to destroy the remains of Tatts Corner.

The bid is to preserve the historical integrity of Britain’s only purpose-built grand prix venue, 50 years on from Stirling Moss’s 1955 victory for Mercedes. The application has the support of Moss, Tony Brooks, Peter Kilfoyle MP and the Merseyside Civic Society.

***

That Mann again

Alan Mann returned to racing for the Historic Racing Saloon events at Brands Hatch and Silverstone recently after more than three decades away from the sport running his aircraft company. Best known for entering saloon cars throughout the 1960s for many leading drivers, Mann has now come back to racing with a Ford Mustang.

However, the car was badly damaged during testing at Goodwood in March and has only just been finished. “It’s only been running for about 10 days” said Mann at Silverstone. “We’ve got massive understeer at the moment.”

The car is due to appear at Goodwood when Mann will share the car with Sir John Whitmore in the St Mary’s Trophy race.

 

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