Tag Archives: Hopkirk

The Real McCoy – Mini Cooper S

Mini Cooper S, Prodrive

The 1964 Monte Carlo Rally boasted a superb entry including factory backed vehicles from Citroen, Ford, Mercedes, Saab, Volvo, Volkswagen and a fleet of 6 works Mini Coopers.

Starting from Athens, Frankfurt, Glasgow, Lisbon, Minsk, Monte Carlo, Oslo, Paris and Warsaw, the field converged on Rheims in France and from there on to 5 competitive stages and a couple of laps of the Monaco Grand Prix track.

The Ford Falcon Sprint of Bo Ljungfeldt won every stage of the rally including the laps around Monaco but in those days the overall results were determined by a handicapping system which translated stage times and engine size into points which meant Ljungfelds 305 hp 4.7 litre 289 cui Falcon did not have a sufficient time margin over the 70hp 1071cc / 65 cui Mini Cooper S seen here crewed by Paddy Hopkirk and Henry Liddon which was declared the winner of the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally.

33 EJB is thought to have been built in 1963 and crewed by Hopkirk and Liddon to 3rd overall and 3rd in class in the 1963 Tour de France prior to winning the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally.

The car belongs to the Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon and is seen here at the Prodrive workshops because the engine was not running properly.

Like the Revenge Mini Replica I blogged about some months ago 33 EJB also has it’s Replica’s like this one built in the USA.

Finally I’d like to correct an oft repeated error reference the registrations of the works Mini’s on the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally seen in the 5th paragraph of this link.

What ever BMW or anyone else may say the registrations of the works Minis on the Monte Carlo Rally in 1964 were as follows :-

33 EJB #37, Hopkirk/Liddon, Cooper S, 1st overall/1st in class.
570 FMO #182 Makinen/Vanson, Cooper S 4th overall/2nd in class
569 FMO #105 Aaltonen/Ambrose, Cooper S 7th overall/3rd in class
477 BBL #39 Baxter/McMillan, Cooper 43rd overall/2nd in class.
18 CRX #187 Thompson/Heys, Cooper S crashed
277 EBL#189 Mayman/Domleo, Cooper S crashed

My thanks to Alan, Tim, Stephen, Darren, Fred at The Nostalgia Forum who helped me out with the registration numbers.

Hope you have enjoyed to days Handicap edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ and that you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


Don’t get mad get even – Replica Revenge Mini.

Today’s featured vehicle is a replica of ‘The Revenge Mini’ which won the 1967 Monte Carlo Rally in the hands of Rauno Aaltonen and Henry Liddon. Unusually the car is probably most famous because of the events that took place on the 1966 Monte Carlo Rally.

There has always been a bit of an edgy competition between France and Britain in just about every field of endeavour, I guess no one wants to be first loser against their immediate neighbour. Evidence of this can be seen in the Monte Carlo Rally of 1966. The Mini Cooper S had been the winning car on the Monte Carlo Rally in 1964 in the hands of Paddy Hopkirk and Henry Liddon and again in 1965 with Timo Mäkinen and Paul Easter at the wheel. Timo and Paul crossed the line in first place in 1966 with Roger Clark in a Lotus Cortina second followed by Aaltonen and Hopkirk both driving Mini’s in third and forth.

However much to the surprise of everybody the top four and two other British cars were disqualified for cheating. Their crime was running non standard (performance enhancing ?) single filament headlight bulbs. It transpires that when teams had entered they had done so on the understanding that these bulbs would be legal as they had been over the previous two years but then the rules were changed after entries had closed making these bulbs illegal because the models of the disqualified cars did not have single filament bulbs fitted as standard.

Curiously the car declared as the winner Pauli Toivonens Citroen was allowed to and did run with these bulbs because some ID19’s were fitted with the single filament bulbs on the normal production lines. Naturally the result upset everyone Prince Rainer snubbed his own prize giving ceremony , Pauli Toivonen, declared the winner, swore he would never drive a Citroen again, and kept his word, and the British Motor Corporation protested the result which 10 months later was declared final and stood.

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Of course better than getting mad is to get even so in 1967 BMC came back and Rauno Aaltonen with Henry Liddon co driving the #177 took the Mini’s third and final Monte Carlo Victory. Observant fans of Michael Caine and the original 1969 film ‘The Italian Job‘ will remember Crocker making reference to the ’66 Monte disqualification in the workshop where the Minis are being prepared and some one is checking the head lights Crocker says ‘I hope their dual filament bulbs, we wouldn’t want to be caught doing anything illegal now, would we ?’

Wishing everyone a fabulous weekend. ‘Don’t forget to come back now. Hear ?’