Tag Archives: Brawn

The Jaguar Judd – Mazda MX-R01

With the mandating of 3.5 litre / 213.5 cui piston engines for the 1992 World Sports Car Championship Mazda were left with no choice but to abandon their rotary powered 787B which won the 1991 Le Mans 24 Hours.

Mazda MX-R01, Le Mans

With insufficient funds to develop a new motor and or chassis they bravely decided not to abandon sports car racing altogether and elected instead to buy a suitable V10 from Judd Engine Developments and modify chassis bought from Tom Walkinshaw Racing that had been designed by Ross Brawn and run the previous year as the 1991 Championship wining Jaguar XJR14 with a Jaguar badged Ford HB V8.

Mazda MX-R01, Le Mans

Five Mazda MV10 powered Mazda MX-R01’s were built; chassis #001 was used exclusively in the Japanese Sports Car Series, #002 was a spare test car taken to Le Mans, #003 was another spare test car taken to Le Mans, today’s featured #004 raced in the whole 1992 World Sports Car Championship and #005 was only raced at Le Mans.

Mazda MX-R01, Le Mans

The MX-R01 made it’s debut in the 1992 Japanese Sports Car series at Suzuka where Youjirou Terada and Takashi Yorino drove chassis #001 to finish 7th from 8th on the grid in the 500 km race. Volker Weidler and Brazilian Maurizio Sandro Sala then drove #004 on it’s European debut at Monza where they retired with engine failure after starting from 7th on the grid.

Mazda MX-R01, Volker Weidler (D)/Johnny Herbert (GB)/Bertrand Gachot (B)/Maurizio Sandro Sala, Le Mans

For the Fuji 1000 kms Youjirou Terada, Takashi Yorino and Maurizio Sandro Sala qualified #001 8th but also retired with engine failure, before #004 scored the teams best result of the season in the BRDC Empire Trophy at Silverstone where Maurizio Sandro Sala and Johnny Herbert finished second from 7th on the grid.

Mazda MX-R01, Volker Weidler (D)/Johnny Herbert (GB)/Bertrand Gachot (B)/Maurizio Sandro Sala, Le Mans

Chassis #005 driven by Maurizio Sandro Sala, Takashi Yorino and Yojiro Terada qualified 10th at Le Mans, but retired with accident damage after 124 laps which allowed Sala to join Volker Weidler, Johnny Herbert and Bertrand Gachot in chassis #004 that started 7th on the grid and finished 4th, 16 laps down on the winning Peugeot, having lead itself briefly led during the opening hours of the race.

Mazda MX-R01, Volker Weidler (D)/Johnny Herbert (GB)/Bertrand Gachot (B)/Maurizio Sandro Sala, Le Mans

Over the remaining World Sports Car Championship season #004 finished 5th at Donington and 6th at Magny Cours with Sala and Alex Caffi at the wheel, posting a retirement with gearbox failure at Suzuka when Takashi joined Maurizio and Alex in the cockpit.

In the Japanese series Takashi Yorino and Youjirou Terada finished a season high 7th in the Fuji 1000kms, Mazda finished 3rd in the final 1992 World Sportscar Championship standings and 2nd in the final 1992 All Japan Sports Prototype Championship standings.

Mazda withdrew from sportscar racing at the end of the 1992 season and the World Sportscar Championship was cancelled in 1993 with only Peugeot willing to compete in the series.

Thanks for joining me on this “The Jaguar Judd” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at this years Le Mans LMP2 winner. Don’t forget to come back now.


Two Time – Lewis Hamilton

Today’s blog will attempt to put Lewis Hamilton’s 2014 World Championship win into perspective.

The 2014 season was of course dominated by the Mercedes AMG F1 team for which Lewis drives with team mate Nico Rosberg.

Lewis Hamilton, MercedesAMGF1

Photo courtesy Mercedes AMG F1.

During the season the Mercedes AMG F1 team qualified on pole 18 out of 19 times; Nico started from pole 11 times compared to Lewis’s 6, with Felipe Massa in the Mercedes powered Martini Williams being the only man to break the Mercedes Benz AMG F1 pole monopoly when he qualified on pole for the Austrian Grand Prix.

Mercedes Benz AMG F1 drivers also recorded 13 fastest race laps 7 of which were recorded by Lewis and 6 by Nico. The remaining fastest laps were recorded by Kimi Räikkönen driving a Ferrari, Felipe and team mate Vallteri Bottas driving for Martini Williams, Sergio Perez driving a
for Force India and Daniel Riccardo driving for Red Bull.

Lewis and Nico also won 16 of the 19 2014 Formula One season races; 11 to Lewis, 5 to Nico and 3 to Daniel Riccardo.

Lewis became the 16th multiple Formula One World Champion and the fourth Britain to do so after Graham Hill ’62/’68, Jim Clark ’63/’65 and Jackie Stewart ’69/’71/’73.

The 2014 constructors championship was won by Mercedes Benz for the first time, there were no championships for constructors in 1954 and 1955 when Juan Manuel Fangio won two drivers championships driving for the Mercedes Benz team.

Mika Häkkinen drove Mercedes powered McLaren’s to consecutive drivers championships in 1998/’99 as did Lewis his to his first championship in 2008. McLaren won the constructors championship in 1998, so Mercedes motors have now powered three world drivers champions to six drivers championships, but just two constructors championships.

An interesting aside is that Mercedes Benz bought out the 2009 Constructors champions Brawn GP at the end of 2009 and there is a paper trail at Companies House which links Brawn GP through the Honda Racing F1 Team and British American Racing to the Tyrrell Racing Organisation founded on the 9th of January 1964 with the company number 00787446.

Therefore over the last fifty years the legal entities registered under Company Number 00787446 lay claim to; the 1969 World Drivers and Constructors championships won by Jackie Stewart run by Tyrrell Racing Organisation under the Matra International banner, the ’71 Driver and Constructors Championships won by Jackie running under the Tyrrell Racing Organisation name as was Jackie’s final Drivers title in ’73, the 2009 World Drivers and Constructors titles won by Jenson Button and Brawn GP and now Lewis Hamilton’s and Mercedes Benz AMG F1’s drivers and constructors championships making five drivers championships and four constructors championships in all.

Thanks for joining me on this ‘Two Time’ edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a life times love affair with racing from New Jersey. Don’t forget to come back now !


Company Number 00787446 – Mercedes F1 W04

On the 9th of January 1964 Ken Tyrrell a wood merchant and amateur racing driver turned his attention to managing his own team and duly registered Tyrrell Racing Organisation Limited at companies house where it was given the Company Number: 00787446.

After winning World Constructors & Drivers Championships in 1969 with Jackie Stewart and the Matra Ford in 1969, with the Tyrrell Ford in 1971 and the drivers Championship in 1973 the team continued competing until 1998 when Company Number: 00787446 was renamed British American Racing Grand Prix Limited who’s defining season came in 2004 when they finished 2nd in the World Constructors Championship despite never winning a race.

Mercedes F1 W04, Hamilton. British Grand Prix, Silverstone

By degrees British American Racing Grand Prix Limited morphed into Honda Gp Limited by 2006 when the Handa team won the Hungarian Grand Prix after which the team underperformed until Ross Brawn organised a management buyout at the beginning of 2009. Using Mercedes motors the Brawn GP won 8 races to secure the World Constructors Championship and Jenson Button’s six wins were enough to win the World Drivers Championship.

At the end of the 2009 season the financially strapped Ross sold out to Daimler AG who were withdrawing their financial interest in their partnership with McLaren. Luring seven time champion Michael Schumacher out of retirement to join hot shot Nico Rosberg the future of Company Number: 00787446 looked rosy but somehow the new team did not gel and between 2010 and 2012 the Mercedes GP team scored 3 podiums in 2010, none in 2011 and one victory and a 3rd place finish in 2012. Michael Schumacher retired from the sport at the end of 2012 and was replaced by 2008 champion Lewis Hamilton.

Mercedes F1 W04, Rosberg, British Grand Prix, Silverstone

The design of the F1 W04 was overseen by Geoff Willis showed good speed but was at odds with the tyres for which it was designed, Nico Rosberg seen above, won two consecutive pole positions in Bahrain and Spain but could only finish in 9th and 6th, with Lewis complaining that he was “racing a Williams” out of the point in Spain.

After some secret testing, for which the team was subsequently penalised by being barred from an open test, for Pirelli the teams showed improved form at Monaco where the Nico took pole from Lewis and won with Lewis 4th. At the British Grand Prix Lewis took the first of four consecutive pole positions but thanks to a variety of issues including tyres managed to convert only one of them in Hungary into a victory. Nico ended up winning the British GP after Lewis suffered and survived a high speed puncture.

Mercedes F1 W04, Hamilton. British Grand Prix, Silverstone

After the Hungarian Grand Prix Lewis managed just a single 3rd place in Italy after which the teams performance plummeted to top ten finishes for both drivers interrupted by a 2nd and 3rd for Nico in India and Abu Dhabi respectively.

Lewis finished 2013 4th in the drivers standings despite scoring only one win against the two scored by team mate Nico who finished 6th in the standings behind Kimi Raikkönen who finished his season two races early. Mercedes meanwhile finished 2nd in the constructors championship.

Mercedes F1 W04, Rosberg, British Grand Prix, Silverstone

Through out 2013 there were rumours that the position of Ross Brawn, who saved the team from closure, was under threat and at the end of the year Ross left the team and has allegedly retired from the sport, though he himself has been quoted as saying never say never. His place has been taken by Paddy Lowe for 2014 who will oversea the development of the F1 W05’s that Lewis and Nico will drive.

You can follow the progress of, the highly touted for 2014, Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One™ Team, Company Number: 00787446, on their website linked here, on their facebook page linked here and twitter feed linked here.

Thanks for joining me on this “Company Number 00787446” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I be looking at the first in a series of US vintage vehicles. Don’t forget to come back now !


Company Car – Ferrari 360 Spider

GALPOT regulars may remember me posting a blog on the Ferrari 360 Spider last year, I have revisited this model, built in 2000, in honour of the original owner of this car, Ross Brawn team principle of Mercedes AMG Formula One team who’s driver Nico Rosberg won his and the teams first victory in China last weekend.

Ferrari 360 Spider, Haynes IMM

Ross, from Manchester England, became interested in engineering at the Belle Vue Stadium, Britain’s first oval track dating back to 1926, where he attended a variety of short track events.

After a spell with the Atomic Energy Research Establishment in Harwell Oxfordshire where he studied instrumentation, Ross joined the race car manufacturer March Engineering where he worked as a milling machine operator and later as a race mechanic.

In 1978 Ross joined Williams as a machinist progressing through the Williams R&D and aerodynamics departments.
After spells with the Haas Lola and Arrow’s Grand Prix teams Ross moved to the Jaguar Sports Car team and was credited as the lead designer of the Jaguar XJR 14 which won the 1991 World Sports Car Championship.

Later in 1991 Ross became technical director at Benetton where he was joined by rising star Micheal Schumacher with whom he designed strategies to win the 1994 & 1995 World Drivers Championship and 1995 World Constructors Championships.

Towards the end of 1996 Ross joined Micheal at Ferrari, along with Benetton’s designer Rory Bryne to form a ‘Dream Team’ that won World Constructors Championships from 1999 to 2005 and the World Drivers Championships for Micheal Schumacher from 2000 – 2004.

After taking a sabbatical in 2007 Ross Brawn joined the under performing Honda team and spent the 2008 season developing the teams 2009 challenger only for Honda to withdraw from Grand Prix racing at the end of 2008 amidst global economic chaos.

Incredibly Ross managed to put together a deal to save the Honda team with a management buyout and secured a deal to use Mercedes engines for his newly rebranded Brawn GP team. The new car was a cracker right out of the box winning no less than six of it’s first seven races in the hands of Jenson Button who won the 2009 World Drivers title and with two additional wins from Rubens Barrichello Brawn secured the 2009 constructors title.

The following year Daimler Benz bought into Brawn GP and the team was rebranded again to Mercedes GP. The team, with Ross Brawn remaining as team principle, managed to tempt Micheal Schumacher out of a three years of retirement to join Nico Rosberg. After two years of relative under performance Mercedes finally won it’s first race the Chinese Grand Prix last weekend.

The victory was the first for a Mercedes vehicle since the 1955 Italian GP won by Juan Manuel Fangio.
Ross Brawn’s Ferrari 360 Spider can be seen at the Haynes International Motor Museum.

Thanks for joining me on this ‘Company 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 !