Tag Archives: Rahal

Anny-Charlotte Ralph And Bob – Porsche 935 K3/80 #009 00030

It is quite perverse to try and write a comprehensive story about today’s featured Porsche 935 chassis #009 00030 which took part in 6 Daytona and 4 Le Mans 24 hour races, winning the former with Bob Garretson, Bobby Rahal and Brian Redman at the wheel in 1981 and hitting headlines around the world when Rolf Stommelen, Dick Barbour and a certain Paul Newman drove the car to a second place finish at Le Mans in 1979 in a single blog, so I will focus on some of the cars highlights, owners and star drivers for now.

Porsche 935 K3/80, Verney, Kent-Cooke, Garretson, Le Mans

Rolf, Dick and Paul proved their result at Le Mans was no fluke when they finished second on the cars second appearance in the ’79 Watkins Glen 6 Hour race.

French driver Anny-Charlotte Verney shared #009 00030 for the first timeApple, on it’s final appearance carrying customer Porsche 935/77A bodywork, with Bob Garretson and Skeeter McKitterick for a 9th place finish in the 1980 Daytona 24 hour race.

At the Sebring 12 Hour race #009 00030 was fitted with Kremer Brothers K3 bodywork which carried sponsorship from Apple Computer and was driven to a 7th place finish by Bob, Bobby Rahal and Canadian Kees Nierop.

At Le Mans in 1980 Bob and Bobby were joined by Australian Alan Moffat to qualify 14th on the grid but piston failure led to the cars only Le Mans retirement after it had completed 134 laps.

After winning the Daytona 24 hours in 1981 the same winning Bob, Bobby and Brian trio finished 17th from 4th on the grid in the 1981 Sebring 12 Hours.

Part owner Bob Garrettson, with Ralph Kent-Wood, stepped back from the driving seat to allow Bobby and Brian to share the wheel to finish 3rd and 4th at Riverside and Laguna Seca.

The #009 00030 was then shipped to Le Mans where owners Bob and Ralph teamed up with British Petrolium (BP) sponsored Anny-Charlotte Verney to set a qualifying time of 3 min 55.150, good enough for 33rd spot on the grid.

Anny-Charlotte sharing the car for the second time with Bob and Ralph drove the car, seen above 23 hours into the race, to 6th place finish.

The car remained competitive for the remainder of the 1981 IMSA season which included a 3rd place finish with Bob, Rick Mears and Johnny Rutherford in the 1981 Watkins Glen 6 hour race.

In 1982 Bob was joined at the wheel of #009 00030 by Columbian Mauricio DeNarvaez and Jeff Wood at Daytona where they finished 3rd in the season opening 24 hours race.

Bob teamed up with Anny-Charlotte for a third time in #009 00030 for the 1982 Le Mans 24 Hours and they were joined by Ray Ratcliff for the cars final Le Mans start, from 43rd on the grid they salvaged an 11th place finish.

Wayne Baker bought #009 00030 for the 1983 season and converted it from twin turbo 935 spec to single turbo 934 spec and ran it with a loose interpretation of 934 bodywork at Daytona where he drove the car with Bob and Jim Mullen to a 9th place finish and in the 1983 Sebring 12 hours where Kees replace Bob and with Wayne and Jim scored the cars second and final outright victory.

At the end of 1983 #009 00030 was returned to full twin turbo 935 K3 spec and on it’s fifth appearance in the Daytona 24 hours was driven by Wayne, Jim and Tom Blackaller to a 5th place finish from 12th on the grid, from the same position on the grid at Sebring the same trio finished a season high 4th.

#009 00030’s final appearance in the Daytona 24 hours was in 1985 when Jack Newsum, Chip Mead and Ren Tilton joined Wayne for a 9th place finish from 28th on the grid.

Midway through 1985 Chester Vincentz bought the car and converted it back to single turbo 934 spec and ran it IMSA GTO events with a 934 type body in 1985 and a hybrid 935 body in 1986 and ’87 as a 930 S.

On the October 4th 1987Chester drove #009 00030 to a 12th place finish from 12th on the grid on the cars 72nd and final known in period appearance.

Thanks for joining me on this Anny-Charlotte, Bob and Ralph edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when Ferrari Friday will be making a month long return. Don’t forget to come back now !


Wacky and Bertone – Arnolt Bristol Bolide #404X3086

In 1906 Stanley Harold Aranoff was born into a family of bookbinders living in Chicago. After studying engineering he changed his name to Arnolt as part of an unsuccessful bid to break into the motor industry in 1936.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

While looking for business opportunities he bought the rights to the Sea Mite Marine engine which he attached to a 13 ft rowing boat and sailed from St Joseph in Michigan across Lake Michigan to Chicago as part of a publicity stunt which earned him his “Wacky” nickname.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

The Sea Mite proved a wise purchase after “Wacky” Arnolt won a contract to supply the motors to the US NAVY for their small vessels during the ’39-’45 war.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

After the war “Wacky” held franchises to distribute MG, Riley and Morris cars and at the 1952 Turin motor show a MG TD with bodywork designed by Franco Scaglione form the financially struggling Bertone Coachworks caught his eye.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

Wacky immediately placed an order for two hundred of the distinctive Bertone MG’s and Mr Bertone apparently nearly fainted. Only 103 Arnolt MG’s were built because MG switched production to the new TF model.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

Impressed with the sales of the Bertone MG Arnolt, “Wacky” commissioned Bertone to develop a body for an Aston Martin and a total of eight these cars are thought to have been built by which time Aston Martin has long pulled the plug on the project.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

Wacky then commissioned a one off Bertone Bentley for his personal use before entering an agreement with Bristol to supply 200 type 404 chassis with 125 hp six cylinder Bristol motors which would then be shipped to Bertone for the bodywork as seen on today’s featured 1954 example chassis #404X3086.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

Today’s featured car, which is seen at the 2012 Bristol Concours d’Elegance at Greenwich, was the original European demonstrator and was displayed at the 1954 Motor Shows held in Geneva, Turin, Brussels, Munich, and finally Paris where it was sold to an American owner.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

To help market the Arnolt Bristol “Wacky” entered three cars in the 1955 Sebring 12 hours and they finished 1st, 2nd and 4th in the 2 litre / 122 cui class with John Panks and Ernie Erickson sharing the honours. The following year the team finished second in the Sebring 12 hours to a Ferrari and in 1957 the team withdrew from the race after team member Bob Goldrich was killed during the race.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

In 1960 Max Goldman and Ralph Durbin shared a second Sebring 12 hour class win driving an Arnolt Bristol which finished 14th overall. Other class and race winners driving Arnolt Bristol’s included team owner Wacky himself, Ed Rahal, Carl Grassman and Tom Payne.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

Production of the Arnolt Bristol is thought to have come to an end in 1959 with 142 vehicles built, of those 12 were destroyed on Wacky’s premises in a warehouse fire.

Arnolt Bristol Bolide, Bristol Concours d'Elegance, Greenwich

Three versions of the Arnolt Bristol were built striped down Bolide like the one seen here, several Bolides also had aluminium bodies, Deluxe Roadster with Connolly hide seats full windscreen and full weather protection and a couple of coupes. At least one Arnolt Bristol is known to have been sold new as late as 1966.

Thanks for joining me on this Wacky and Bertone edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at the first of this months Indy Cars. Don’t forget to come back now !


Flattery Will Get You Anywhere – Lotus 47 #47-GT-04/78

The Lotus 47 was conceived as a racing version of the Lotus Europa (Type 46). The 47 featured a lightened backbone chassis, 168 hp fuel injected Ford Cosworth C13 motor, in place of the Renault used in the road going Europa, Hewland FT200 Formula Two gearbox and suspension derived from the Lotus 22 and Lotus 23 racing cars.

Lotus 47, Goodwood Festival of Speed

The Lotus 47 first appeared at Brands Hatch on Boxing Day 1966 making an immediate impression finishing 1-2 on the road with John Miles winning and Jackie Oliver in second place, though Jackie was penalised for a push start off the grid and so did not figure in the final classification.

The car seen here started life as chassis # 47-GT-04 and was driven by Miles and Oliver to a 9th place overall, first in class, in the 1967 Brands Hatch 6 hours. The car was then acquired by John Calvert and raced under the Sunderland Racing Developments banner in 1968. An collision with Doug Hardwick, driving #47-GT-61 in April ’68 necessitated the replacement of the chassis and so the car became identified as #47-GT-04/78.

While no further International success was attributed to Lotus 47’s after the class win at the 1967 Brands Hatch six hours they did score many wins in national events. Of the many drivers who raced 47’s one was rookie B Rahal who made his first appearance on the race track in #47-GT-60, a car he purchased from Lotus Midwest near Janesville, Wisconsin in the summer of 1972.

In all around 55 cars seems to be the accepted number of Lotus 47’s built confusingly some appear to have been built solely for the road and the chassis numbers run to #47-GT-85.

Several special 47’s were built with Climax motor’s and one, known a Type 47D, with a Rover V8 was built by the factory for GKN that is said to have been capable of 186 mph.

When John Blundsten tested the prototype 47 for Motor Racing magazine he said that while a couple of recent Lotuses had not “exactly flattered their owners. This one is very different … and flattery will get you anywhere !’

Thanks for joining me on this “Flattery Will Get You Anywhere” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres”, I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


Targeting Ferrari – Honda NSX (Refresh)

The Honda NSX was designed to show case Honda’s Formula One World Championship winning technology in a super car that was as practical a proposition on the road as a Honda Civic. In order to achieve that goal Honda aimed at making a game changing car that was both better than the Ferrari 328 and 348 models and significantly cheaper.

Honda NSX, Piston Heads, BMW Factory

The design team for the New Sportscar – eXperimental (NSX) was led by Chief Designer Nicholas Zander and Executive Chief Engineer Shigeru Uehara who allegedly studied an F-16 Fighter for idea’s to incorporate into the new vehicle. Formula One drivers Saturo Nakajima and Ayrton Senna contributed to the design process along with Indy 500 winner Bobby Rahal. It was at Senna’s insistance that the all aluminium chassis was made stiffer than was originally conceived.

Honda NSX, Piston Heads, BMW Factory

The NSX, each one built by a hand picked team with a minimum of ten years experience, was launched in 1990 to much acclaim with a transversely mounted 2997 cc / 181 cui V6 motor that produced 270 hp good for propelling the NSX to 60 mph from rest in 5.02 seconds and a quarter mile time of 13.47 seconds.

Honda NSX, Piston Heads, BMW Factory

Twelve years after it’s launch and upgraded version the NSX was launched in 2002 now powered by a 3197 cc / 194 cui V6 motor which produced 290 horsepower that lowered the quarter mile time to 13.3 seconds. The revised edition as seen here is externally easily differentiated by the absence of the pop-up lights which were mandatory at the time of the vehicles launch to gain access to the US Market.

Honda NSX, Piston Heads, BMW Factory

Production of the NSX ceased in 2005. Gordon Murray who designed the 1992 McLaren F1 and owned an NSX for 7 years is quoted from a Japanese interview as saying of this game changing car “The moment I drove the NSX, all the benchmark cars—Ferrari, Porsche, Lamborghini—I had been using as references in the development of my car vanished from my mind. Of course the car we would create, the McLaren F1, needed to be faster than the NSX, but the NSX’s ride quality and handling would become our new design target.”

Thanks for joining me on this ‘Targeting Ferrari’ edition of ‘Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres’ I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


Shooting Brake – Ferrari FF

Until the beginning of this year, so far as I know, you could count the number officially sanctioned Ferrari Shooting Brakes as absolutely nil until the Sultan of Brunei came along and ordered seven 456 ‘Venice’ shooting brakes around the turn of the millenium.

Ferrari FF, Goodwood FoS

There had been several unoffical such vehicles stretching back to Count Giovanni Volpi who challenged the mighty Ferrari 250 GTO on the race track with a 250 GT SWB (#2819GT) converted into the legendary ‘Breadvan‘, there have been several other attempts you can judge the success or not of these ‘creations’ on this link.

Ferrari FF, Goodwood FoS

On March 1st this year that changed when Ferrari launched the $300,000 Ferrari FF a 7 speed, dual clutch, 208mph, 650hp, 4 wheel drive leviathan.

Ferrari FF, Goodwood FoS

The 6.3 litre / 385 cui 65 degree V12 motor is connected to a conventional gearbox to drive the rear wheels and a unique power take off unit to drive the front wheels that is activated only when the manettino dial on the steering wheel is in ‘comfort’ or ‘snow’ modes.

Ferrari FF, Goodwood FoS

Just how use full the 16 cubic feet, or 28 cubic feet with the rear seats down, load area remains to be seen, but I guess if painters and decorators start rolling up for work in one of these models I’ll start retraining for new career.

Ferrari FF, Goodwood FoS

It might be a while before I find the time to visit Maranello to give one of these a spin, but until then my friend Michele Rahal managed to bag the first ever public US seat time in an FF with the wonderful Dana Alloway by his side and a camera on the dash, enjoy this linked clip to find out what your missing if you have not had time to pop into your local Ferrari dealer recently.

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

PS Don’t forget …

Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz

Automobiliart, Paul Chenard

December 26th – January 2nd

Win a set of Paul Chenard Greetings Cards

Sports-GT cars set, Paul Chenard

Set 1 Sports & GT Cars

Phil Hill, Sharknose Ferrari Set, Paul Chenard

Set 2 Phil Hill World Drivers Championship 50th Anniversary Edition

1934 GP Season Card set, Paul Chenard

Set 3 1934 Season

1950s Grand Prix Engines

Set 4 Grand Prix Engines of the 1950’s


Mike Hawtorns racecars Card set, Paul Chenard

Set 5 Mike Hawthorn’s Race Cars

The Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz will comprise 8 categories.

Overall winner chooses one set of Paul Chenard Greetings Cards from the five sets shown above.

The cards measure 15.24cm x 11.43cm, come in packs of 12 with 3 copies of 4 designs in each set, plus A6 envelopes.

Which set will you choose ?

The free to enter Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz will run from December 26th – January 2nd Entries close January 8th 2012, Winner announced January 16th 2012.

Full details on December 26th at GALPOT.

Looking for Automotive Seasonal Gift Idea’s? Visit Automobiliart Now !


The Pawn – Ferrari 637

Ever since Renault turned up on the grid of the British Grand Prix in 1977 with a 1500cc / 91.5 CUI the stability and hegemony that had been born out of the 500hp 3 litre / 183 cui Ford sponsored Cosworth V8 as the dominant force in Grand Prix racing in 1966 had been under attack. By 1985 power output of the little turbocharged motors had risen from 525 hp in 1977 to 1200 hp in qualifying trim, expensive motors were being built simply to last a couple of qualifying laps a situation that could not last indefinitely.

To get a grip on the situation for 1987 the FIA the ruling body of Grand Prix racing mandated a limit of 4 bar / 58 psi on turbochargers which was reduced for 1988 to just 2.5 bar / 36 psi in 1988 when 3.5 litre / 213.5 cui normally aspirated motors would be allowed to take part in preparation for a completely normally aspirated formula 3.5 litre formula in 1989.

These normally aspirated motors were originally intended to be of a mandated V8 configuration, and this detail upset Enzo Ferrari, who wanted to build a V12 for the new regulations, so badly that he set in motion the design of the Ferrari 637 to compete in the Indianapolis 500.

Consultation with Goodyear led to the leading Truesports team and their March 85C complete with driver Bobby Rahal conducting tests in Italy with Ferrari Grand Prix driver Michele Alboreto.

Ferrari 637

Photographer Unknown image will be credited or removed upon request.

After the tests Ferrari took the March apart and with the lessons learned Gustav Brunner designed this pretty Championship racing car seen here with Michele Alboreto at the wheel.

Unlike the still born Lotus 96 which was built entirely out of carbon fibre for Al Unser Jnr to drive for Winkleman racing in 1985, the Ferrari 637’s monocoque was manufactured from a carbon fibre lower half and a conventional aluminium top half.

Between the announcement of the Ferrari Indycar project and its first tests the FIA relented and removed the stipulated V8 configuration for the 1989 Formula One regulations.

In consequence Ferrari built a mildly successful V12 engine which was completely usurped by the V10 engines of first Honda, Renault and Ilmor Mercedes which won most of the drivers and constructors Championships from 1989 to 2000 interrupted ironically only by the Ford V8 which Michael Schumacher used in his Benetton to win his first World Drivers Championship in 1994.

In 1989 Alfa Romeo part of the same FIAT automotive empire as Ferrari announced it’s own still born Indy Car programme with an engine designed completely from scratch, unrelated to the Ferrari engine tested in 1986, which was fitted to a proprietary March chassis. At the press launch of the programme journalist Doug Nye spotted an all white vehicle that was clearly not a March chassis with an ALFA Romeo logo on it that nobody from ALFA Romeo was prepared to talk about, it turns out that ALFA may have considered using the chassis of the Ferrari 637 as a test hack for their new motor.

Thanks for joining me for this Ferrari Friday edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’, I hope you will join me again tomorrow for AJ Foyt Day tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


King Of Speed – March 86 C

March Cosworth 86C, Goodwood FoS

This vehicle, seen at Goodwood Festival of Speed, was driven to Victory Lane at the Indy 500 in 1986 by Bobby Rahal in one of the closest three way finishes in Indy history. Bobby beat Kevin Cogan and Rick Mears to the line with the fastest race lap, ever at the time, of 209.153 mph.

11 days after Rahals win his team owner, Jim Trueman, succumbed to cancer.

March Cosworth 86C, Goodwood FoS

The 1986 victory was the first time the Indy 500 had been won in under 3 hours, Rahal completed the distance in 2 hrs, 55 mins, 43.470 secs averaging 170.722 mph breaking a record set by Mark Donohue in 1972.

The March 86 C became a two time Indy 500 winning design the following year when Roger Penske pulled his old March 86 C from a show at the Sheraton Hotel in Reading Pennsylvania so that Al Unser could stand in for an injured Danny Ongais. Starting from 20th Al took his March to his 4th Indy 500 win.

March Cosworth 86C, Goodwood FoS

In the process the March Cosworth combination took its 5th consecutive Indy 500 and Al Unser, who in ’78 had taken the first Cosworth DFX to victory also took the tenth and final Cosworth DFX powered victory at the Brickyard.

March Cosworth 86C, Goodwood FoS

Bobby Rahal went on to become 1986 CART champion a title he retained in 1987 and won for a third time, now as a driver owner in partnership with Carl Hogan, in 1992. In 1984 Bobby made one NASCAR Cup start as a road ringer in the Wood Bros #21 Seven/Eleven Ford at Riverside, qualifying 20th coming in 40th winning $875 for his trouble.

Last year Bobby was spotted at Mallory Park getting some laps in classic Lola and Cooper sports cars. For those with the time a visit to Mallory Park on a Wednesday morning is a must !

March Cosworth 86C, Haynes IMM

A couple of weeks ago I visited the Haynes International Motor Museum and came across a second March 86C, chassis 5, originally driven by Micheal Andretti. Micheal qualified 3rd one spot ahead of Bobby in a #18 Kraco March 86C and came in 6th one lap down at Indy in 1986.

In an open wheel career spanning 1983 – 2007 spent 18 years driving in CART Championship cars, Micheal won the CART Championship in 1991 driving for Newman / Hass and finished 2nd in the Championship 5 times including the 1986 season during which he won 3 times driving a #18 Kraco March.

Andretti has a remarkable record at Indy of leading 431 laps on nine occasions but never winning the race as a driver, however as an owner of the Andretti Green Racing team his cars won the Indy 500 in 2005 with Dan Weldon at the wheel and 2007 with Dario Franchitti at the wheel AGR has also won three IRL campionships with Tony Kanaan 2004, Weldon ’05 and Franchitti ’07.

March Cosworth 86C, Haynes IMM

The car seen above was on pole at Pocono and won at Phoenix International Raceway by a clear lap. This particular vehicle has appeared at Goodwood Festival of Speed driven by owner Nick Mason, and former Indy 500 winners Bobby Rahal and Danny Sullivan.

Thank you for visiting this King of Speed edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’, I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !