April 2012

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Damien Smith, Editor We've been robbed! Peugeot's snap decision to pull out of sports car racing has knocked the stuffing out of both Le Mans and the new FIA World Endurance Championship. There's...
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CONTRIBUTORS In the racing world there are certain watering holes which have a particular significance: Rosie's Bar at Monaco, the Green Man at Silverstone, The Phoenix at Hartley Wintney for...
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So how did 2012's new Formula 1 cars end up looking so ugly — and why is the McLaren MP4-27 the odd one out? In fact it's an interesting case study of how the FIA goes about defining the technical...
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Senna won the BAFTA awards for Best Documentary and Best Editing at the Royal Opera House on February 12 — giving Formula 1 a welcome boost in front of a stellar audience that included the likes of...
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Caterham kicked off the 2012 launch season when it issued computer images of its new car on January 25, but the first real example to be shown was the McLaren on February 1. By the start of testing...
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Nick Heidfeld will return to the Le Mans 24 Hours after an absence of 12 years following his failure to land a Formula 1 drive. The German, who was part of Mercedes' ill-fated 1999 Le Mans assault,...
NEW WRITERS A very warm welcome to Oliver Gavin! The four-time Le Mans 24 Hours class winner has started writing for the Motor Sport website and will be bringing you all the news from behind the...
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MINI's participation in the World Rally Championship took another twist prior to Rally Sweden in early February when parent company BMW announced it was effectively ditching Prodrive from running its...
Toyota has stepped into the void left by Peugeot's shock withdrawal from the FIA World Endurance Championship. The Japanese manufacturer had planned to contest just a handful of races around the Le...
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MG is set to return to the British Touring Car Championship with the multi title-winning Triple 8 race squad. Triple 8 Engineering will field a pair of MG6 GT saloons built to the latest Next...
An all-new Festival of Speed event in Cornwall has been launched and will run in the grounds of Pentillie Castle and Estate on August 25/26 2012. The mile-long hillclimb course starts on the bank of...
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A feature race into the evening on Saturday will be one of the highlights of the second Donington Historic Festival over the weekend of May 5/6. The hour-long race for Pre-1972 sports-racing cars,...
After three editions at the spectacular Portimao circuit, the Algarve Historic Festival will switch venues in October to run further north at Estoril after financial issues between the venue and the...
A convoy of Pre-1963 GT cars could make a road trip from the UK to race at Monza in June if the plans of series organiser Ben Cussons are realised. Two years ago Cussons drove his AC Ace via...
A new race on the Nordschleife circuit at the Niirburgring during the Oldtimer Grand Prix will be open only to Pre-1966 touring cars and GT cars of a similar performance. The race, on August 10, the...
A sensational celebration of the dominance of Grand Prix racing by the Silver Arrows cars in the later 1930s will be the big feature of the Goodwood Revival Meeting in September. Ten cars from...
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From the 44 starters that left the Houses of Parliament on January 1, only three failed to reach Cape Town 28 days and 10,000 miles later at the finish of the London to Cape Town World Cup Rally....
An old-style Formule Libre race for a wide range of historic and more recent single-seaters will run at the opening Masters event of the season at Oulton Park on Saturday March 17. The Masters...
Francois Migault, who has died aged 67, briefly made it to Formula 1 but he was a fixture on the sports car scene for more than 30 years. Migault contested 13 Grands Prix for Connew, BRM and Embassy...
A rare Longhorn Williams FW07, first built as an Indycar, will race with Grand Prix Masters this season if a current rebuild by Frank Lyons and his team goes to plan. In 1979 Frank Williams sold...
Argentinian Grand Prix driver Roberto Mieres, who has died aged 87, was a keen sportsman who represented his country at sailing in the 1960 Olympics. But his passion was motor racing, and after...
Team owner Roger Dowson, who has died at the age of 67, had a 25-year involvement in the British Touring Car Championship that encompassed factory programmes with Triumph, Austin Rover and Mazda....
A new week-long classic special stage rally will run in South Africa in September to celebrate the country's rallying heritage. The event will cover 870 miles of special stages in a total route...
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The 50th anniversary running of the Daytona 24 Hours, or the 'Rolex 24' as it's known in deference to its sponsor, was a thriller. Only in the final hour did a clear winner emerge. The race that...
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I though I'd seen it all before. In hindsight I should have known better. This was something special: my first visit to Daytona, and on the 50th anniversary of international sports car racing around...
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The Siberian cold snap that swept Europe at the end of January brought heavy snow and sub-zero temperatures to much of the Monte Carlo Historic Rally route, resulting in many damaged cars and almost...
Citroen's Sebastien Loeb racked up his 68th career victory and his sixth win on the Monte Carlo Rally, underlining his status as the most successful driver in the event's 80-year history. Having been...
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By Nigel Roebuck The inexorable growth of aero clutter Missing AJ Foyt at the Daytona 24 Hours Dario Franchitti’s love of motor sport history When Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton pulled the wraps...
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There will be a lot of Brabhams at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. This is good news. I have always loved and admired Brabhams by Gordon Murray, from the days when Bernie Ecclestone owned the team...
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There are only two MotoGP events that I insist you visit and a few others that are worth attending. The rest, to be honest, are as well watched from the comfort of your armchair. The season-opening...
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Back in December at the International Motorsports Industry Show in Indianapolis I had the pleasure of moderating a panel discussion about the future of motor racing. Former CART technical director...
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Sir, Having just seen the new Ferrari F1 car and read the anti-Tombazis [Ferrari's chief designer] fall-out, I can only imagine that this is the sort of car the FIA wants to see. If not, why was...
Sir, Paul Watson's photo of my friend Jackie Epstein's Cooper Monaco T61 was indeed at the 1963 Targa Florio. I seem to remember it ran short of fuel at some stage, though had suffered electrical...
Sir, I found February’s Lunch with Mike Costin most interesting. Talking of the DFV, Mike mentions that “the pick-up after a gear change wasn’t very good. Dare I say it, it was Jack Brabham who...
Sir, I was very interested in the article in the March issue, concerning Ian Ashley, although more poignant memories were brought back to me when he mentioned Helmuth Koinigg's tragic death during...
Sir, Paul Watson’s letter in the March issue mentions Jackie Epstein’s and my Targa Florio race. The Cooper Monaco was bought from a garage in Daventry; it had been fitted with a Buick engine, but...
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Sir, I am sorry to read of Martin Brundle's loss of sleep regarding his 'defection' to Sky. If it's any consolation, I think this is due to young Martin's faulty analogy: "I feel like I moved from...
Sir, Congratulations on a brilliant piece of journalism on the Patrick Head years at Williams. Surely this era was the most interesting in recent times and through Patrick's eyes we got a really...
Sir, I am conducting research for a book on Britain's especially enthusiastic and committed sports fans, and would like to meet and interview anyone who is one of these super sports lovers. For...
Sir, We'll all miss Patrick Head, one of Grand Prix history's greatest characters in every respect. I sense that his heart isn't really in what he says about today's technical challenges — a case of...
Sir, I read with great interest Doug Nye's article 'History — a given, not a gift', and agree with most of it, particularly with regards to comments that would have been made by Jenkinson and Boddy....
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Nigel Roebuck compares notes with Martin Brundle and assesses the depth of talent on show in the modern era As the 2007 season got underway, in Melbourne, only one World Champion – Fernando Alonso –...
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New faces, new cars and new tracks will all play their part in the Grand Prix season ahead. As for the car regs, the devil – as usual – will be in the detail Sebastian has improved and is stronger...
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British TV viewers will have more F1 coverage than ever before in 2012. But can the BBC do a Grand Prix justice with a highlights programme? And can Sky’s coverage be worthy of the extra cost? SKY...
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H e was racing’s blue-eyed boy: effortless speed, natural confidence, a Grand Prix driver at 19. Mike Thackwell had talent to throw away – and that’s what he did, to go surfing instead. If you knew...
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Thackwell’s co-instructor and his favourite team manager recall a man of parts James Weaver came through Formula Ford with Mike Thackwell, and in 1978 both men were instructors at Mike Eastick’s...
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Bentley conquered Le Mans all over again in 2003 with this stunning Speed 8. Just don’t suggest it’s a German car in disguise… Unalloyed triumphs are rare events. With almost every victory comes a...
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His first home was a caravan, and the school of hard knocks was his only education. It would stand him in good stead on his climb to Formula 1 and beyond Nowadays karting is the kindergarten, where...
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A gold Rolex: that’s the prize these British aces crave when they abandon the winter chill and head to Florida for the Daytona 24 Hours. But what else makes this enduro such an irresistible draw? The...
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A 60-year thread links the photos in this magazine, and it involves a father and son. One founded our photo archive, the other runs it today. We asked them how the life of a racing photographer has...
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Now with official backing from NASCAR, the burgeoning Euro-Racecar series offers drivers ‘over here’ a genuine route into the wide world of stock car racing ‘over there’ There must be more sensible...
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Can Aston Martin be blamed for producing a car based on its V12 Vantage but offering no more performance, restyling it and charging precisely three times the money for it? For that is what the new...
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Teaching kids to drive in a 30-year-old Land Rover I hated teaching my children to ride bicycles. It was less an opportunity for bonding, more a chance for me to lose patience and them various...
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After castigating the BMW M5 last month for being too heavy, overpowered and generally overblown, I’ve found a car that puts the case for an alternative approach, and from a very unlikely source. To...
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Porsche has a very annoying habit of keeping back the best version of any given product until the end of its life cycle, and this shows no sign of abating. It might be thought an inevitable process,...
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Just occasionally, a new engine appears that not only throws convention to the winds, it makes convention look pretty silly as it does so. The V12 in the McLaren F1 was one, the V10 in the last-...
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A Mexican jaunt highlights the quiet role of John Fitch in motor racing history Ten years ago a small number of us got on a plane to Mexico to pay our respects to the Carrera Panamericana and the...
I don’t know for sure, but I think it entirely possible that this is the first time a Hyundai road car has been seen within these pages. This new Veloster is here not because it breaks any new...
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Electric Lola-Drayson LMP machine tests the waters for 2013 FIA championship The new Lola-Drayson B12/69-EV all-electric Le Mans Prototype has been hailed as a test car to prove that electric power...
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A new agreement means that everyone can experience what it is like to drive the F1 constructor’s back catalogue You would be amazed how many announcements about new simulators we get here in the...
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Formula Kart Star bus helps young karters keep up to date with schoolwork at the races Formula Kart Stars (FKS) continues to lead the way in supporting the off-track development of its competitors...
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It’s an exhibition, a shop-front and an automotive party. That’s why Retromobile is a February must In its new hall the annual winter Paris auto-exposition had a higher-quality feel this time,...
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What we'd blow the budget on this month Cheshire ClassicsRGO JMV8 Going uphill fast! This hillclimber packs a low-hours 360bhp Rover V8 with gurgling quad Dellortos. Make a big noise in this very...
In the Workshop What's your history? The firm began as a one-man band over 30 years ago, when restoration was a much smaller world. I trained as a physicist, so this was a case of turning a hobby...
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News from the main auction houses around the world Gooding & Company When you sell 98 per cent of 118 lots up for auction it's safe to say that it was a successful event. That's exactly what...
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That’s what the papers at first called the blond kid from Farnham when he swapped a pre-war Riley for one of Cooper’s latest single-seaters and began to make waves This year marks the 50th...

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