Tag Archives: Jordan

Cambrian Rally – Conwy County

Cambria is the Latinised form of the Welsh name Cymru from Old Welsh combrog and Proto-Brythonic word kom-brogos, meaning fellow countryman or compatriot, known to much of the rest of the world as Wales.

After studying Welsh rock strata in 1835 Adam Sedgwick named the first geological period of the Paleozoic Era the Cambrian period which characterised by the rapid diversification of lifeforms, known as the Cambrian explosion, some of which have been well preserved in the sedimentary rocks exposed in Wales.

Snowdon, County Conwy

500 million years after the Cambrian explosion 266 of the direct descendants of some of those lifeforms gathered in County Conwy to take part in the 61st running of the annual Cambrian Rally organised by the North Wales Car Club on Saturday February 13th.

The Cambrian Rally has moved from being the concluding round of the MSA Welsh Rally, Ravenol BTRDA Rally, FMP and ANWCC Forest Rally Championships last year to being the season opener for them this year.

 Mini John Cooper Works WRC, Conner McCloskey, Damien Duffin, Penmachno, Cambrian Rally,

With the intention of making a 4am departure from Bristol to see the opening stage of the Cambrian Rally I left home promptly at 5.30 after being unexpectedly invited out for tapas and sing a long the night before.

The delay was fortuitous as I ended up not far from Snowdon on the third Penmachno stage of the rally which sent the cars around the perimeter of the quarry where the #7 2012 McGeehan Motorsport Mini John Cooper Works WRC crewed by Conner McCloskey and Damien Duffin, who finished the event 4th overall, are seen above.

FIAT Abarth 131 Rally, Matthew Robinson, Sam Collins, Penmachno, Cambrian Rally,

Walter Rohrl, a hero in my youth drove a FIAT Abarth 131 Rally to claim his first World Rally Championship in 1980.

I believe the 1978 #30 FIAT Abarth 131 Rally seen above started as a more pedestrian brown model before being converted by RSD Rally Sport Development into a competition version, Matthew Robinson and Sam Collins retired the #30 from the event after exceeding the time limit before stage 6.

Hillman Avenger, Barry Jordan, James Gratton-Smith, Penmachno, Cambrian Rally,

In the 1970’s it would appear there were plans within the British product planning arm of the Chrysler Europe empire to produce an Avenger to compete with the Ford Mexico with a BRM developed 16 valve twin cam head.

It would appear a few heads got built and at least one was fitted to a car used by factory personnel but the project stumbled at this stage, I am not sure if the #64 1971 Hillman Avenger 1500 GL Luxe has one of the 16 valve twin cam BRM heads fitted but the BRM livery on the rear piqued my interest, the car driven by Barry Jordan and James Gratton-Smith unfortunately also retired, after Stage 3.

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI, Jayne Auden-Rowe, David Auden, Penmachno, Cambrian Rally,

The #75 1998 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI seen above crewed by Jayne Auden-Rowe and David Auden was classified 50th overall.

Skoda Favorit, Paul Ellis, Simon Jones, Penmachno, Cambrian Rally,

I could not resist going back to the puddle in the quarry as the final competitors went through Paul Ellis and Simon Jones make a splash in their way to a 70th place finish overall in their #120 1992 Skoda Favorit.

Ford Fiesta R200, Glynne Jones, Glenn Mercer, Penmachno, Cambrian Rally,

Similarly Glynne Jones and Glenn Mercer go temporarily amphibious in their Ford Fiesta R200 on their way to a 77th place finish overall.

Ford Fiesta 2000, Stephen Simpson, Andrew Roughead, Great Orme, Cambrian Rally,

Andrew Roughead moved from co – driving Andrew Fenwicks 6th placed Proton S2000 the week before on the Legend Fires North West Stages to sit beside Stephen Simpson in his #12 2010 Ford Fiesta S2000 seen above lifting a rear wheel on the final Great Orme Stage on their way to 8th place overall.

Ford Escort L, John Rowlands, Glenn Latham, Great Orme, Cambrian Rally,

Lifting a front wheel in classic Mk2 style is the #20 1976 2 litre Ford Escort L crewed by John Rowlands and Glenn Latham which came home 15th overall.

Peugeot 309 GTi, Tim Cains, Richard May, Great Orme, Cambrian Rally,

The sun came out for a short while and is seen above illuminating the faces of 36th place finishers Tim Cains and Richard May in their #85 1988 Peugeot 309 GTi.

Nissan Micra Tropic, Niel Andrew, Dominic Adams, Great Orme, Cambrian Rally,

54th place finishers overall and 2nd in the 1400C class were Niel Andrew and Dominic Adams in the #86 1994 Nissan Micra Tropic seen above heading into the sunset sans rear bumper cover.

Ford Fiesta S2000, Charles Payne, Carl Williamson, Penmachno, Cambrian Rally,

After nearly 48 mins of competitive driving Charles Payne and Carl Williamson in their #3 2009 Ford Fiesta S2000 came home just 1 second behind the winners …

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX, Luke Francis, John H Roberts, Penmachno, Cambrian Rally,

… Luke Francis and John H Roberts in their #6 2004 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX who also won this event in 2012.

Volkswagen Lupo E, Paul Barbet, Chris Sheriden, Great Orme, Cambrian Rally,

Paul Barbet and Chris Sheriden above are heading to an evening 81st place finish overall in their #127 2001 Volkswagen Polo E.

As darkness rapidly fell after the action was over I managed to stumble back across Great Orme back to the car park after another great days entertainment.

Thanks for joining me on this Cambrian Rally edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow for a look at the last of this month’s featured Camaro’s. Don’t for get to come back now !


Almost Fully Loaded – Austin Mini Clubman Wood & Pickett Estate #XL2W2524450A

Soon after I bought my first car in 1978 I started regularly driving over from Harrow Road in Wembley to Victoria Road in the Tropic of Ruislip to visit an old school friend, the route used to take me past the Wood & Pickett works from which all manner of blinged out and often bomb proof Range Rovers used to appear for the rich and famous that brought into the UK valuable foreign exchange, most notably from the middle east.

Austin Mini Clubman Wood & Pickett Estate, Silverstone Classic,

Bill Wood and Les Pickett learned their coachbuilding skills at Hooper & Co and left to set up their own business operating from Bills front room in 1947.

Austin Mini Clubman Wood & Pickett Estate, Silverstone Classic,

By the 1960’s Wood & Pickett now operating in Abbey Road, Park Royal were vying with their former employers Hooper, Radford, Minisprint, Ridgeway and a long list of others for upgraded Mini’s which could involve anything from minor cosmetic variations to fully loaded cars which were particularly popular amongst royalty, entertainers and sports persons.

Austin Mini Clubman Wood & Pickett Estate, Silverstone Classic,

Focusing on the top end of the market and with a little help from former Radford managing director, Len Minshull, and head of marketing Eddie Collins, Wood & Pickett’s Mini clientele included Twiggy, Laurence Harvey, Brian Epstein, Mick Jagger, King Hussein of Jordan, Hayley Mills and Elton John.

Austin Mini Clubman Wood & Pickett Estate, Silverstone Classic,

Thanks to the leadership of Eddie Collins Wood and Pickett expanded into the production of the aforementioned Range Rovers and in the late ’70’s to new premises in Ruislip where today’s featured 1978 Austin Mini Clubman Estate was sent from Cleveland Garages Ltd, Mont A L’Abbe, St Helier, Jersey having been purchased there on 17th August 1978.

Austin Mini Clubman Wood & Pickett Estate, Silverstone Classic,

The list of upgrades carried out by Wood & Pickett included deseaming the front wings, flared wheels arches, fitting 5″x10″ tech Del Mini-lite wheels, twin automatic reversing lights mounted under the rear bumper, direction indicator lights and repeaters to front wings, twin headlights, air horn, high output alternator, electric windows, electrically adjustable door mirrors, chrome front bumper bars with WP logo, bonnet lock, extra secure door locks, stainless steel finish to the top of the doors, body painted Rolls Royce Caribbean Blue, leather trimmed Wood & Pickett 14″ steering wheel in dark blue leather, navy blue leather rear compartment roll-over cover, blue velour seats, deluxe soundproofing of the interior, FM Radio cassette, but strangely on the evidence of these photo’s no electric aerial.

The only Wood & Pickett upgraded Mini Clubman Estate was then delivered to it’s thus far unidentified owner in Jersey and registered on the 13 December 1978. Subsequently #XL2W2524450A was driven just over 29,000 miles by the owner prior to being sold at the Silverstone Classic auction a couple of month’s ago, where the car is seen in these photographs, for a modest £11,250.

Wood and Pickett has since undergone a couple of changes of ownership and now specialises in Mini’s from premises in Leatherhead.

Thanks for joining me on this “Almost Fully Loaded” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a Mercury Monterey. Don’t forget to come back now !


Goodwood Favourites – Formula One

Today’s post features a few of my favourite Formula One ’74 to present day cars that appeared at Goodwood last week.

McLaren M23, Fittipaldi, Goodwood Festival of Speed

First up Emerson Fittipaldi gives GALPOT a wave coming back down the hill in his 1974 McLaren M23 chassis #5.

Maki Cosworth F101A, Goodwood Festival of Speed

After Honda’s disappearance from the Formula One grid at the end of the 1968 season there was no Japanese presence in Formula One until the 1976 Japanese Grand Prix. However this was not for the want of trying, Kenji Mimura founded the Maki Team in 1974 and their futuristic F101, which bore a passing resemblance to the experimental 1972 Ferrari 312 Snowplough attempted to unsuccessfully to qualify for the 1974 British and German Grand Prix. After Howden Ganley broke his legs at the Nurburgring the team retired to Japan to rework their ideas for 1975.

LEC CRP1, Wright, Goodwood Festival of Speed

Mike Pilbeam’s portfolio of attractive Formula One cars includes the LEC CRP1 seen above which was driven by David Purley in 1977 to a season high 13th place in Belgium shortly before surviving a 178 g deceleration from 108 mph to 0 in 25 inches / 66 cm against the sleepers during practice for the 1977 British GP. This particular car driven by Gary Wright had not been seen in action for 35 years.

Toleman Hart TG184, Davidson, Goodwood Festival of Speed

There were numerous vehicles which Ayrton Senna had driven present at Goodwood, and the Toleman TG184 above driven by Alistair Davidson may be one of them, an acquaintance who has spent twelve months researching the TG184 chassis tells me each of the five TG184’s has a slightly different rivet pattern where the roll bar connects to the top of the monocoque and is currently looking for body off photo’s of the TG184’s to confirm which car is which.

Jordan Ford 191, Sirgue, Goodwood Festival of Speed

In 1991 Eddie Jordan graduated to Formula One with one of the most attractive Formula One cars ever seen, designed by Gary Anderson, a fist full of Pepsico dollars, works supplied Ford Cosworth engines and Andrea de Cesaris as his lead driver. The team finished a highly creditable 5th in the constructors championship and Andrea 9th in the drivers championship. The team will also be remembered for introducing Micheal Schumacher to the top table of the sport in Belgium. Owner Didier Sirgue is seen at the wheel above.

Williams Mercedes FW36, Goodwood Festival Of Speed

Finally with Mercedes Benz motors and Martini money the Williams team is back on the ascendent this year with Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas at the wheel. The FW36 above unfortunately had to remain silent to avoid contravening the no testing agreement currently in operation amongst Formula One teams.

Thanks for joining me on this “Goodwood Favourites” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be celebrating the 120 Anniversary of Motorsport participation with Mercedes Benz at Goodwood. Don’t forget to come back now !


Equalled Best Season – Force India Mercedes VJM06

Force India’s story begins with a plucky Irishman called Eddie Jordan who 1991 burst on to the Formula One scene with one of the most attractive Formula One cars ever built, a fist full of Pepsi Co sponsorship dollars to fly the 7 Up flag and an Italian called Andrea de Cesaris, who had a reputation for crashing and under achieving, as their lead driver.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Young Driver Test, Silverstone

Against the odds Jordan finished a highly creditable 6th in their first season of competition. When Jordan’s second driver, Bertrand Gachot, was incarcerated for an incident involving pepper spray and a cab driver in London, Eddie introduced Micheal Schumacher to Formula one at the 1991 Belgian Grand Prix, but failed to keep him beyond his debut race, from which retired with clutch failure on the first lap, for which he qualified an impressive seventh.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Young Driver Test, Silverstone

Jordan’s highlight season came in 1999 when with cast off Mugnen tuned Honda V10 motors the team finsihed 3rd in the constructors championship behind only Ferrari and McLaren Mercedes. Jordan’s lead driver Heinz-Harald Frentzen also came third in the World Drivers Championship with 2 victories.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Sutil, British Grand Prix, P2, Silverstone

In 2005 Eddie sold out to Alex Shnaider who rebranded the team Midland F1 which became the first F1 entry. Midland F1 achieved nothing in 2006, unless you count two top ten non points paying finishes, and Alex sold the team on to late season Dutch sponsor Spyker before the 2006 season had ended.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Sutil, British Grand Prix, P2, Silverstone

Spyker F1, like Midland F1, only lasted for a single season during which Adrian Sutil scored a single world championship point for an 8th place finish in the Japanese Grand Prix. Before the 2007 season has ended Spyker F1 was sold to a consortium led by Vijay Mallya an was rebranded Force India for the 2008 season.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Sutil, Young Driver Test, Silverstone

With the aid of some financial stability the team progressed from scoring no points with their Ferrari powered car in 2008 to becoming 6th place finishers in the 2011 constructors championship.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, di Resta, British Grand Prix, P2, Silverstone

During that time Giancarlo Fisichella, who scored Jordan’s last Formula One win in 2002, scored Force India best ever result a 2nd place in the 2009 Belgian Grand Prix with the now Mercedes powered VJM02, a result that led Giancarlo to join Ferrari as a replacement for the injured Felipe Massa for the remainder of 2009.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Sutil, Young Driver Test, Silverstone

In 2012 Adrian Sutil sat out the season to focus on a legal issue and Paul di Resta was joined by another German Nico Hülkenberg at Force India. Both drivers scored season high 4th place finishes but the team still only finished the season 7th in the constructors championship.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Young Driver Test, Silverstone

With half an eye on a possible drive at Ferrari as an eventual replacement for Felipe Massa, Nico Hülkenberg Force India’s top scorer in 2012 left to join the Ferrari powered Sauber team for 2013 and Adrian Sutil rejoined Force India.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Sutil, Young Driver Test, Silverstone

The design of the VJM 06 featured today was over seen by Technical Director Andrew Green, the all new carbon fibre chassis is powered by a 2.4 litre / 146 cui Mercedes Benz FO 108F motor with a mandated maximum 18,000 rpm limit and a Mercedes AMG Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS). The transmission is 7 speed semi automatic built by McLaren Racing.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, di Resta, British Grand Prix, P2, Silverstone

Paul di Resta seen above managed 9 points paying finishes in 2013 with a season high 4th in Bahrain to finish 12th in the Drivers Championship. His services will not be retained in 2014 when Paul is expected to return to the German DTM Touring Car championship.

Force India Mercedes VJM06, Sutil, Young Driver Test, Silverstone

Adrian Sutil, seen above, managed eight points scoring finishes but with a season high of ‘only’ 5th in Monaco on his way to finishing 13th in the drivers championship. With Ferrari opting to re employ Kimi Raikkönen Nico Hülkenberg decided to leave Sauber and rejoin Force India for 2014 while Adrian move the other way to join Esteban Gutiérrez at Sauber.

After equaling their best Constructors Championship finish with another 6th place finish in 2013 Nico will be joined at Force India by Mexican hot shot Sergio Pérez for 2014 when the teams VJM07 cars will be again be powered by Mercedes.

You can follow Force India’s progress on their website linked here, Facebook page linked here and Twitter feed linked here.

Thanks for joining me on this “Equalled Best Season” edition of “Gettin a li’l psycho on tyres”, I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at an Edwardian Mercer Raceacout. Don’t forget to come back now !river


Elle va à Bexhill On Sea – Elva Climax Mk III

Bexhill on Sea second hand car dealer and engine tuning specialist Frank G Nichols decided to enter the racing car manufacturing business as a response to enquiries arising from a CSM Frank bought from Mike Chapman, no relation to Colin and raced successfully in 1954.

Elva Mk III, The Classic Motor Show, NEC, Birmingham

The Elva name is a mash up of the French “Ella va” which means ‘she goes’. By the time production ceased the Elva name had appeared on over 1000 vehicles.

Elva Mk III, The Classic Motor Show, NEC, Birmingham

By 1958 Elva was manufacturing the Coventry Climax powered Mk III, known drivers of the cars back then included Charlie Kolb, Burdette Martin and William Jordan in the USA with Eugine Hall and Ian Raby representing the Marque in the United Kingdom.

Elva Mk III, The Classic Motor Show, NEC, Birmingham

Of the 92 starts known for the model at Racing Sports Cars.com three were outright victories Kolb at Miami, William Bradley at Green Acres both in 1958 and the last recorded by George Ranney at Grayling in 1960, many additional class wins were also recorded.

Elva Mk III, The Classic Motor Show, NEC, Birmingham

The history of the car seen here at last years Classic Motor Show is unknown, it is owned by Bexhill Museum who had the original aluminium body that had at various times been painted red, blue and white, replaced by a new one manufactured by the original suppliers Hastings Motor Sheet Metal now known as Moore & Tye in 2009.

Elva Mk III, The Classic Motor Show, NEC, Birmingham

The Nostalgia Forum member Bloggsworth has kindly informed that the team that made the new body included Alan Jenner who worked on the original car. A small reunion of ex Elva employees took place when the restoration was complete. The Mk III can now usually be seen in the Technology Collection at Bexhill Museum.

Thanks for joining me on this “Elle va à Bexhill On Sea” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !

PS Congratulations to Johnny Martinez who was awarded a trophy for his ’29 Ford Model A at the Grand National Roadster Show yesterday, John would also like to thank every one who has voted for him in the Cool Rides Online ® pole at goldeagle.com. The vote is still incredibly close, YOU CAN VOTE “John’s 1929 Ford Model A” ONCE A DAY ON THIS LINK until poling closes 31st January, please keep your daily votes coming in, thank you.


Lots of Red Cars – Haynes International Motor Museum

Allard K1, Haynes IMM

A couple of weekends ago I was in a bah humbug mood looking for something to do when a friend asked if I had ever been to the Haynes International Motor Museum, to which I had not and responded accordingly, before I knew it I was being whisked away towards Sparkford in deepest Somerset.

Auburn 852SC, Haynes IMM

The museum bills it’s self as having the UK’s largest collection of cars, numbering over 400, to which maybe added it probably has the largest collection of cars painted red !

Austin Healey Sprite, Haynes IMM

John Haynes publisher of many DIY car repair manuals established the museum, which operates as an Educational Charitable Trust, in 1985.

GAZ M13 Chaika. Haynes IMM

Apart from the accidental or otherwise concentration of red vehicles there are plenty of cars from all over the world some of which were models and or manufactures I had never heard of before.

Jordan Playboy, Haynes IMM

The vehicles are tightly packed at the moment, though unusually for a museum many, possibly even most, get a run round the museum grounds by the museum staff, while others can be hired for weddings and special occasions, a magnificent growling Viper got a quick blast round the museum while we were there.
Lanchester, Haynes IMM

Plans are afoot to expand the museum is September this year and having managed to snap only 10% of the collection over the couple of hours of my visit I look forward to returning even with the building work underway, the ticket I purchased is valid for a year !

Look forward to sharing some of the stories behind these cars in future editions of ‘Gettin’ a little psycho on tyres’, I hope you will join me again tomorrow for a trip to Silverstone. Don’t forget to come back now !