Tag Archives: Chevron

“03” – Chevron Cosworth B19 #CH-DBE-03

On the 6th of September 1970 Chevron Cars turned up at the Nurburgring for the 500km race with an open cockpit Spyder version of their B16 Coupe, known as the B16S, for Brian Redman to drive. Brian qualified on pole but retired from the race after a fuel line broke causing a minor fire, two weeks later Brian qualified the same Escuderia Montjuich sponsored car on pole again at Spa and this time came home first.

For 1971 Chevron’s production version of the B16S became the B19 and indeed the original B16S after a phenomenally successful career in Southern Africa where at least five victories were recorded, running in Team Gunston colours and a one off appearance for Jo Siffert’s team at Paul Ricard the B16S was stripped down, the frame refurbished by Arch Motors and the car resold as a B19 for Peter Humble to race.

Chevron Cosworth B19, Ross Maxwell, Oulton Park,

B19’s hit the decks running at all levels in 1971 with John Bridges scoring an early class victory for the model in a club event at Oulton Park in March with John Miles and Gerry Birrell scoring a class victory driving another B19 in the BOAC 1000 Kilometres World Championship Sports Car Race at Brands Hatch two weeks later.

The history of today’s featured car #CH-DBE-03 according to the Chevron Heritage website is complicated because another B19 chassis #B19-71-3 claims exactly the same early history on the RM Auctions Sotherby’s website.

Chevron Cosworth B19, Ross Maxwell, Oulton Park,

For clarity on the subject one must turn to Allen Brown’s OldRacingCar.com website where the owner of #B19-71-3 in 1972 Jörg Zaborowski advises that the car was “totally destroyed” in an accident on the at ADAC Bergrennen Detmold in April 1973 and twenty years later the chassis number B19-71-3 was reassigned to the new chassis built by Vin Malkie in 1993 that is seen in the RM Auctions Southerby’s website.

The “chassis number” #CH-DBE-03 is believed to actually be a “frame number” designated by Chevron contractor Arch Motors and as Allen points out in his introduction to the B19 “the number on the frame (stamped by chassis manufacturer Arch Motors) is being mistaken for a chassis number” assigned by Chevron Cars, leading to some cars inadvertently claiming an incorrect provenance.

Chevron Cosworth B19, Ross Maxwell, Oulton Park,

Allen has found that the provenance of today’s featured car, seen being driven in these photographs by Ross Maxwell at Oulton Park, can be traced back to 1981, but it is possible the frame has an older provenance that has yet to reveal itself, Chris Chiles drove this car to International Supersports Championship victories in 1991 and 1994.

In all 35 B19’s were built, including the recycled B16S, and B19 victories were recorded in the 1971 European 2 litre Sports Car Championship by Niki Lauda, Toine Hezemans, and John Hine, but consistent Lola driver Helmut Marko won the drivers championship and Lola the constructors championship.

Thanks for joining me on this “03” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a Formula One Car that tragically never got the opportunity to be raced in period. Don’t forget to come back now !


Libre, Hillclimbing, Guernsey Bus – Chevron Cosworth B17C #F2-70-2

Alongside the production of nine Formula 3 Chevron B17 1 litre / 61 cui “Screamer” Formula 3 cars Chevron built 5 examples of the B17B powered by Vegatune Ford Twin Cam engines in 1598cc / 97.5 cui form for US based SCCA Formula B competitors and two B17C’s one with a 1598 cc / 91.5 cui Cosworth FVA engine to compete in Formula 2 and the other today’s featured chassis #F2-70-2 which was originally supplied to compete in Formula Libre events.

Chevron Cosworth B17C, Silverstone Classic, Press Day

Steve Thompson had the car fitted with a 1790 cc / 109.2 cui Cosworth FVC engine and is believed to have won at least 14 Formula Libre races with the car in 1970. The ownership trail then includes Frank Mumford and Alex Seldon, the latter is believed to have fitted the car with a 2 litre / 122 cui BDA in 1972, but neither owner is known to have competed with the car.

Chevron Cosworth B17C, Martin Bullock, Silverstone Classic, Press Day

In November 1972 Malcom Brown is believed to have raced the car at Brands Hatch and in April the following year Richard Leech drove the car in a Libre event as Castle Combe, Deryck Cook advertised the car for sale now powered by a Ford Twin Cam before Philip Sandwith in Guernsey bought it from Spencer Elton in Wiltshire.

Chevron Cosworth B17C, Martin Bullock, Silverstone Classic, Press Day

Philip competed in hill climb events from 1975 to 1978 with #F2-70-2 now fitted with a Holbay twin cam engine that helped him secure numerous class records, Guernsey Bus garage manager Mike le Cras ran the car at the Le Val des Terres hill climb in St Peter Port Guernsey in 1983.

Chevron Cosworth B17C, Martin Bullock, Silverstone Classic, Press Day

The ownership trail then leads to Australian Martin Bullock who is seen driving the car in these photographs at the Silverstone Classic press day in 2013, with a 1967 – 1971 Formula 2 spec Cosworth FVA fitted. More details on this car can be found on Allen Brown’s Old Racing Cars.com website.

Thanks for joining me on this “Libre, Hillclimbing, Guernsey Bus” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be revisiting Nottingham circa 1985. Don’t forget to come back now !


Scottish Hillclimb Champion – Chevron Holbay B17 #F3.70.08

1967 Chevron started building cars with 1 litre / 61. cui “Screamer” motors to comply with the tertiary international Formula 3 regulations.

The manufacturers first Formula 3 model was the one off B7 driven by Peter Gethin towards the end of 1967, this was followed by a batch of 8 production versions of the B7 built in 1968 known as B9’s

Chevron Novamotor B17, Grand Finals, Castle Combe,

A one off B9B with stressed panels incorporated into the frame was built at the end of 1968 and again raced by Peter Gethin who drove the car to a debut win.

The following year Chevron built 14 production versions of the B9B known as the B15 and in 1970 9 upgraded Formula 3 cars followed known as B17’s.

Chevron Novamotor B17, Grand Finals, Castle Combe,

I believe today’s featured car seen in these photographs at the recent Grand Finals Castle Combe meeting where it was driven by Jim Blockley is the same car as that advertised by David Pullen in October 2013.

Distinguishing features include the one piece top body work from the back of the cockpit to the nose, the exhaust, and the universal joint with sliding spline driveshafts in place of the more common for the period Rotoflex driveshaft couplings.

Chevron Novamotor B17, Jim Blockley, Grand Finals, Castle Combe,

According to former Derek Bennett Engineering employee Kevin ‘Ossy’ Hodge, who was involved in building nearly all the B17’s, the car formerly belonging to David Pullen is the eighth Formula 3 B17 to be built and was originally supplied to Ken Sedgley.

Kevin also established recently that unlike Chevron’s GT’s chassis frames for the B8, B16 and later B19 models which were built by sub contractor Arch Motors the frames for the open wheelers were subcontracted out to Racing Frames in Ware, Hertfordshire.

Chevron Novamotor B17, Jim Blockley, Grand Finals, Castle Combe,

In his notes on Ken Sedgley’s B17, see note 13 on this link, Allen Brown records that #F3.70.08 was raced by Ken in Formula 3 and Libre events with Holbay motors and upgraded the following year with a 1600 cc / 97 cui Holbay motor compliant with the new for 1971 spec Formula 3.

John Finch of Chesterfield bought and raced the car midway through 1971 and shared it with Graham Lynch in 1972, the following year a Formula Atlantic Spec production based twin cam was fitted and the car was raced in both Formula Atlantic and Formula Libre events.

Chevron Novamotor B17, Grand Finals, Castle Combe,

Alan Thompson bought the car for hillclimbing campaigning it in 1975 and 1976 which culminated in him securing the 1976 Scottish Hillclimb Championship.

Russell Paterson acquired the car in 1977 but crashed it before it passed through the hands of Bobby Howlings and M Wakefield-Brand in 1978.

Chevron Novamotor B17, Grand Finals, Castle Combe,

David Pullen bought the car in 1991 and in the spring of 2009 the car was significantly rebuilt with a 1964 to 1970 F3 spec 1 litre / 61 cui Holbay R70 MAE engine rebuilt by Stuart Rolt and Mk8 Hewland 4 speed gearbox by Cavan Riley.

John Pearson raced this car in 2014 prior to selling it to Jim Blockley who raced a Brabham in Historic Formula 3 events up until appearing in the Chevron at Castle Combe.

Chevron Novamotor B17, Grand Finals, Castle Combe,

The 1964 to 1970 Formula 3 engine specs required the use of a production engine block and a single choke carburetor fitted with a 36mm restrictor twixt the carburetor and inlet manifold.

The cylinder heads were free to be modified with gear driven cams replacing cam chains and dry sump lubrication for the crankshaft, the 1 litre / 61 cui Formula 3 motor’s were known as “screamers” because they could occasionally be buzzed up to 13,000 rpm with little or no damage.

Chevron Novamotor B17, Grand Finals, Castle Combe,

By far the most popular blocks used in the “Screamer” formula were the three crank bearing 105E and 109E blocks from Ford, Cosworth built a Modified Anglia Engine known as the “MAE” based on 105E but the term “MAE” appears to have carried over onto products for the same market from both Holbay and Novamotor who also used Ford 3 bearing engine blocks.

It was soon realised that the least resistance to flow was offered by a twin choke Weber IDA down draught carburetor with a blanked off choke, for which special inlet manifolds were built to fit engines that were tilted over at 30 degrees along the crankshaft axis in the chassis.

My thanks to all who contributed to the B17 thread at TenTenths and to the Ford 105E thread at The Nostalgia Forum especially Snakedriver, Ray Bell, John Saunders and David Birchall who kindly answered my question regarding the use of the blanked off twin choke carburetors.

Thanks for joining me on this “Scottish Hillclimb Champion” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


1967 Clubmans Champion – Chevron B2 #Heerey

One of the great joys of having a collection of photographs that rapidly became so vast there is no chance I will ever be able to write about them all, let alone remember them all, is stumbling across images of vehicles I know a lot more about since the last time I saw them, one such is today’s 1966 Chevron B2 seen in today’s photograph taken by Geoffrey Horton last year at the Sanoma Historics meeting.

Since I last saw this image I have written a little in recent weeks about the Chevron B1 and B2 models.

During the course of looking for information about those two models I found out, thanks to the efforts of Tony “Giraffe” Gallagher some years ago that, today’s featured car was originally owned by Howard Heerey who drove the car to 21 victories in 1967 which was enough to secure the National Clubmans Championship.

Chevron B2, Sonoma Historics

In the late 1960’s John Love of Barnsley and Barry Joel of Sheffield bought the car for £500 each, John eventually bought Barry’s share of the B2 modifying it and racing it to many successes particularly in the Northern Clubmans Championship.

John Love, a distant relative of the South African naturalised Rhodesian Formula One driver of the same name, found this car to be much better handling than his previous Lotus 7 but even with more horsepower was not as quick as the lighter 7.

He retired from racing in 1973 and sold the car to to Vin Malkie, “for peanuts” on the understanding that he would restore it as the historic racing car we see today.

In May 2009 new owner Edward Carden, brother of former Chevron B2 racer John Carden returned to the tracks with the refurbished car at Donington Park since when it has changed roll over bars several times.

My thanks to Geoffrey Horton for sharing this photograph.

Thanks for joining me on this 1967 Clubmans Champion edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at the story of a good samaritan from Nottingham in Scotland.


The Blank Car – Chevron Cosworth B16 #B16-DBE-27

1969 saw Derek Bennetts Chevron launch what turned out to be it’s final closed cockpit model the B16, most of which were powered by 4 cylinder Cosworth FVA or larger FVC motors, though at least one was powered by a Mazda rotary and at least two more were raced with BMW motors.

Chevron Cosworth B16, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

23 Chevron B16’s are believed to have been built, 20 from 1969 to 1970 and three more in 1971, however the desirability of these coupés has increased since the 1980’s and many more than the original 23 exist today as numerous continuation and replica examples have been built and are still available to order from Chevron.

Chevron Cosworth B16, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

I believe the Cosworth powered chassis #B16-DBE-27 was originally delivered to Chevrons Swiss agent and noted racing driver Jo Siffert who sold it onto fellow Swiss driver Arthur Blank who took it hill climbing and won at least one race at Ulm-Laupheim in Germany with it.

Chevron Cosworth B16, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Shortly afterwards the car is said to have been burnt out in a club race and it is believed the useable remains or at the very least the chassis plate were built up into a Steinmetz Opel powered B19 spyder, as were numerous other B16’s after the closed cockpit class for sports racing cars was abandoned.

Chevron Cosworth B16, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Arthur Blank entered his B19 in at least two races at the Nurburgring and Le Mans in 1971 for himself and “Brilliant” Bob Wollek to drive but it would appear the car never took part in either event and Bob appears never to have raced this B19 which Arthur drove to a second place finish in class at Hockenheim at the end of 1971.

Chevron Cosworth B16, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Arthur continued to compete in the B19 through 1972 mostly in hillclimbs and did a deal with Austrian Freddy Link to drive the car, now with a Ford motor installed, at Interlagos where Freddy finished 18th in the 500km race.

It is believed Arthur then upgraded his B19 to B21 spec, as were many other B19’s, which he again took hill climbing in 1973, Gerhard Kobler competed with the car in 1974 and 1975 running a turbocharged Cosworth motor until crashing it while testing at Misano. Chevron aficionado Vin Malkie appears to have been responsible for restoring the B21 spec car back to B16 spec with bodywork in Arthur Blank’s 1970 colours.

Thanks for joining me on this “The Blank Car” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


When Forty Four Equaled Fifty – Chevron B8 #CH-DBE-78

1967 had been a busy year for Chevron with the production of the one off BMW powered B4 GT , one off BRM V8 powered B5 GT, a run of 7 B6 GT’s six with BMW motors and one with a Ford Twin cam and the companies first open wheeler B7 Formula 3 car.

For 1968 Chevron really stepped it up producing six different models and 59 cars in total, by for the most numerous with 44 examples built was the B8 GT which differed only in detail from the B3. B4, B5 and B6 models and were mostly powered by the 2 litre / 122 cui BMW 4 cylinder engine with a few being powered by the Cosworth FVA and FVC motors and a couple with Climax engines of varying sizes.

Chevron B8, Andrew Newall, Silverstone Classic

In order to comply with the Group 4 category in international events series production of the B8 should have run to a minimum of fifty units however in order to make up the short fall Derek Bennett managed to get away with renumbering and counting rebuilt cars as new vehicles, succeeding where Enzo Ferrari failed with the 250LM some years earlier, hence the chassis numbers for the B8 GT’s run way beyond the 44 chassis actually built brand new and tracing their exact histories is far from straight forward.

In October 1945 Joseph Cyril Bamford founded the company with which his initials have become synonymous in a small lock up with a prototype electric welder, some scrap steel and some surplus jeep axles which he fashioned in to a trailer that sold for a handsome profit, 3 years later he introduced the first hydraulic tipping trailer to the European market and in 1951 he painted his products a shade of yellow which has also long since become synonymous with JCB.

Chevron B8, Andrew Newall, Silverstone Classic

With the introduction of JCB’s backhoe trailer and “hydra digga” JCB established themselves with must have equipment for every self respecting farming and building contractor with earth moving requirements, by 1968 JCB were sponsoring an MGB driven by Peter Brown and Tony Fall in continental events as part of their marketing strategy.

For 1969 Peter graduated into the 2 litre GT class using at least one Chevron B8 including today’s featured chassis #CH-DBE-78 which he is believed to have shared with Roger Enever in the Targa Florio where the pair were classified 14th despite not finishing after and accident, at Spa classified 20th, Le Mans where they retired, Zeltweg recording a 13th place finish, before rounding out the season with two retirements in Barcelona and Paris.

Chevron B8, Andrew Newall, Silverstone Classic

Peter drove a B8 in numerous other events during 1969 but at the time of writing it is by no means certain #CH-DBE-78 was the car he drove in all of them. He appears to have taken a bit of a sabatical from racing between April 1970and March 1972 when he reappeared in the JCB sponsored Ferrari 512M chassis #1030.

Andrew Newall is seen at the wheel of #CH-DBE-78 in these photographs earlier this year at Silverstone Classic during qualifying in the rain and racing in the dry.

Thanks for joining me on this “When Forty Four Equaled Fifty” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at possibly my favourate Formula 5000 car. Don’t forget to come back now !


1967 – Chevron B6

In 1966 hitherto builder of Clubman’s racing cars Chevron guided by founder Derek Bennett diversified into building a series of GT Cars starting with two Ford Twin Cam powered Chevron GT’s that retrospectively became known as B3’s an a similar BMW powered car known as the B4.

Chevron B6, Nick Thompson, Sean McClurg, Gold Cup, Oulton Park

Both of these models won first time out as did the one off 2 litre / 122 cui BRM V8 powered B5 built in 1967 which Brian Redman drove to a debut victory at Oulton Park in April 1967.

Chevron B6, Nick Thompson, Sean McClurg, Gold Cup, Oulton Park

1967 also saw the fledgling business build a batch of six similar B6 GT cars similar to the one seen here shared by Nick Thompson and Sean McClurg at Oulton Park in August.

Chevron B6, Nick Thompson, Sean McClurg, Gold Cup, Oulton Park

Like the similar B3, B4 and B5 GT models the B6 was also driven to a debut victory, by Digby Martland at Brands Hatch who also claimed the B3 debut victory in 1966.

Chevron B6, Nick Thompson, Sean McClurg, Gold Cup, Oulton Park

Six of the B6’s were powered by 2 litre / 122 cui BMW motors and the other by a 1600 / 97.6 cui Ford Twin Cam, between them the B6’s are credited with at least 14 wins and an additional 4 class wins.

The last documented in period class win being recorded by Martyn Denley at Silvertone in 1970, Simon Hadfield and Michael Schryver were campaigned their Michael Schryver Antiques example in Thundersports from 1985 to 1986.

Thanks for joining me on this “1967” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at the last in the current series of Lola T400’s. Don’t forget to come back now !