Tag Archives: Senna

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 !


JPS Tribute TVR – TVR Cerbera

One of the coolest paint jobs ever to appear on a racing car was the black & gold JPS livery on the Lotus Grand Prix cars run from 1972 to 1986 with a two year gap from 1979 to 1981. Last of the Lotus drivers to appear in the JPS colours were Ayrton Senna and Johnny Dumfries who drove the Renault powered Lotus 98T’s.

TVR Cerbera, Double Twelve, Brooklands

Today’s featured car is a 1998 TVR Cerbera in 1986 JPS Lotus livery. This Cerbera is powered by the top of the range 4.5 litre @ 273 cui V8 which was quoted as giving 420 hp with a rest to 60 mph acceleration time of 4.1 seconds and top speed of 185 mph.

While Lotus were running their own Grand Prix team they built several models with the same colours as the Formula One Race cars including the Gold Leaf Team Lotus liveried Elan Sprint, JPS liveried Europa Special, and Essex Esprit Turbo.

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


Promises Promises – Lotus Renault E21

In four short years Toleman Motorsport rose from sponsor of drivers in junior categories to becoming Champion Formula 2 constructors and by the end of 1980 they made an ambitious move into Formula One with turbocharged 4 cylinder Hart motors from their premises in Whitney in Oxfordshire. Over the next five years Toleman struggled to qualify for races for two year and then struggled to finish races for a further two years but high lights including three podium finishes in 1984 with rookie Ayrton Senna driving and Teo Fabi’s pole position at the German Grand Prix in 1985 showed enough promise for 1985 sponsor Benetton to buy the team.

Lotus Renault E21, Raikkönnen, British Grand Prix P2, Silverstone

Under Benetton ownership the team from from Whitney raced for one season with BMW motors with which Gerhard Berger scored a single win in the Mexican Grand Prix before switching to Ford motors in a partnership which lasted until 1994 when Michael Schumacher won his first of two consecutive championships in 1994 despite two disqualifications and a highly contentious maneuver which eliminated his only championship rival in the season finale. By now the team had moved to premises in Enstone, Oxfordshire.

Lotus Renault E21, Grosjean, British Grand Prix P2, Silverstone

In 1995 Benetton secured a supply of Renault Motors with which Michael secured his second championship before moving to Ferrari. Benetton slipped from 1995 Constructors Champions into a graceful decline until 2001. A year earlier Renault bought Benetton out but refrained from renaming the team Renault until 2002 when their latest motor was fully competitive.

Lotus Renault E21, Prost, British Grand Prix P2, Silverstone

Under Renault’s ownership the team from Enstone won two drivers championships with Fernando Alonso in 2005 and 2006 breaking Michael Schumachers five year strangle hold on the championship. Renault also became only the second French constructor after Matra in 1969 to win the Constuctors Championship in 2005 and 2006. Alonso left for an ill feted spell with McLaren in 2007 but returned in 2008 for a two year spell during which the team could not match McLaren or Ferrari for top honors.

Lotus Renault E21, Grosjean, British Grand Prix P2, Silverstone

After a scandal involving race fixing allegations in 2009 Renault moved swiftly to divest itself of it’s interest in the Enstone team and the Luxembourg group Genii Capital became majority owners of the team which in 2011 was rebranded Lotus Renault GP. In 2012 the somewhat underfunded Lotus Renault GP Team pulled off a coup by bringing Kimi Raikkönen back to Formula one after an enforced sabbatical which had seen his place at Ferrari taken by Alonso in 2010. Raikkönen’s return netted a single win in 2012 for the team now known simply as Lotus F1 at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Lotus Renault E21, Prost, British Grand Prix P2, Silverstone

Last season promised much for Lotus F1 as Kimi Raikkönen took a comfortable win in the Australian Grand Prix and there was talk of a new backer being brought into the team. Kimi followed his win up with a string six second place finishes and until midway in the season looked to be a genuine contender for the title until the development of tyres decisively went to the advantage of Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull. By the seasons end the promising backer had all but disappeared and it emerged that Lotus F1 were struggling to pay Kimi his promised bonuses to the point where Kimi had a back operation and missed the last two races of the season consequently dropping from 3rd to 5th in the seasons standings secure in the knowledge that for 2014 he would be returning to Ferrari to partner Fernando Alonso the man who usurped him at the end of 2009 !

Lotus Renault E21, Raikkönnen, British Grand Prix P2, Silverstone

Lotus F1 who name their cars with an E for Enstone were among the last to confirm a drive train deal for 2014 and the last to show their 2014 contender will start the season with Kimi’s team mate Romain Grosjean and Venezuelan Williams refugee Pastor Maldonado sharing the driving duties. 4 time champion Alain Prost’s son Nicholas is seen driving the unnamed car in the 3rd and final photographs during the Young Driver Day at Silverstone last year.

You can follow the fortunes of Lotus F1 on their website linked here, on their facebook page linked here and on their twitter feed linked here.

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


Criptic Details – GALPOT Quiz Answers

Last Wednesday I set a Criptic Details Quiz here are the questions and answers.


It’s a ’58, but which letter ?

Chrysler 300D, Gold Cup, Oulton Park

Answer 1958 Chrysler 300D.


Another slippery MOPAR, but which model ?

Dodge Viper, Avenue Drivers Club, Queen Square, Bristol

Answer Dodge Viper.


What was the code name that Product Planning Dept leader Erick A. Reikert lent to the base model of this RS Turbo ?

Ford Escort RS Turbo, Castle Combe

Answer Erick A. Reikert lent his name Erika to the base Ford Escort Mk III of which this is the top of the range RS Turbo model.


Surnames names of two US presidents who might be associated with this door handle.

Lincoln Continental, Avenue Drivers Club, Queen Sq, Bristol

Answer Presidents Lincoln and Kennedy are the names that might be associated with this Lincoln Continental.


What was the most popular block used in the Formula A / Formula 5000 open wheel series ?

Lola Chevrolet T142, Gold Cup, Oulton Park

Answer The most popular block used in Formula A / Formula 5000 series for cars powered by production block motors was the Chevrolet small block as seen on this 1969 Lola Chevrolet T142 once run by Horst Kröll.


Which Brazilian went on to become a three time world champion after running into the rear end of Martin Brundle’s Formula Three Ralt RT3 ?

Ralt RT3, Gold Cup, Oulton Park

Answer Brazilian Ayrton Senna went on to become three time world champion after running into the rear end of Martin Brundle’s Formula Three Ralt RT3 seen here at the recent Oulton Park Gold Cup meeting driven by Graham Fennymore.


Enzo Ferrari described this as “The most beautiful car ever made” what is it ?

Jaguar E-Type, Avenue Drivers Club, Queen Square, Bristol

Answer Enzo Ferrari described the E-Type Jaguar as “The most beautiful car ever made”.

I hope you enjoyed taking part.

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


F687/S – Lotus Honda 99T

1987 brought about several changes for the Lotus team firstly their hitherto sponsor John Player Special withdrew from the sport and secondly their hitherto engine supplier Renault followed suit.

Fortunately for Lotus Williams, who had an exclusive contract with Honda for the supply of motors in 1986, let the 1986 World Drivers Championship slip away by allowing their drivers Nelson Piquet and Nigel Mansell to take points off one another by refusing to issue team orders or nominate one over the other as preferred winner. This did not go down well with Honda or their preferred driver Nelson Piquet.

Lotus Honda 99T, Goodwood Festival of Speed

As a consequence Honda came to an arrangement with Lotus to supply year old 1986 motors to Lotus for 1987 and at the same time did a deal with McLaren to supply top spec motors for the 1988 season with Ayrton Senna as their preferred driver. Meanwhile Senna was partnered by Saturo Nakajima in the Lotus team at the behest of Honda whom Honda had tried unsuccessfully to place at Williams in place of Mansell in 1986.

Furthermore Lotus managed to secure sponsorship from the new big spenders on the Formula One block Camel.

Lotus Honda 99T, Goodwood Festival of Speed

Despite being already down on power on the Williams team thanks to the year old motors being used, Gerard Ducarouge took the brave decision to use active suspension on the 99T which although offering advantages to consistent ride height, pitch and roll added 25kgs/55lbs in weight an required 5% of the motors power to keep it working.

Lotus Honda 99T, Goodwood Festival of Speed

By the end of 1987 Senna had won two races, just as he had in ’85 and ’86, both on street circuits at Monaco and Detroit. The Detroit race would prove to be the last victory for a car built by the Lotus team founded by Colin Chapman. With 57 points, two more than in ’86 Senna finished 3rd in the World Championship in 1987 while Nakajima’s additional 7 points helped Lotus secure third in the Constructors championship.

The 1987 season marked a high point for Team Lotus since the death of Colin Champman in 1982 and from there until 1994 when the team founded by Chapman made it’s final appearance in the sport.

Players in Japan and the United States of the Gran Turismo 3 game will be familiar with the Lotus Honda 99T which was given the alias “F687/S”.

Thanks for joining me on this “F687/S” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to came back now !


Limited Fuel Unlimited Boost – Lotus Renault 98T #004

The Lotus Renault 98T was a development of the 1985 Lotus Renault 97T Grand Prix Car designed by Gerard Ducarouge and Martin Ogilvie for Ayrton Senna and Johnny Dumfries to drive in the 1986 Grand Prix season.

Lotus Renault 98T, Autsport International, NEC, Birmingham

Note the small vertical “barge boards” mounted on the front suspension, a feature carried over from the Lotus Renault 97T that are still in evidence on today’s contemporary Grand Prix cars albeit mounted much closer to the side pod intakes.

Lotus Renault 98T, Autsport International, NEC, Birmingham

The main difference between the 1984 and 1985 Lotus Formula One challengers was that the FIA had mandated a 195 litre maximum fuel capacity which meant the new car could be built with a smaller and lower fuel tank.

Lotus Renault 98T, Autsport International, NEC, Birmingham

Elio de Angelis who had won one race in 1985 for Lotus and had been eclipsed by new team mate Ayrton Senna who won two races, moved to the Brabham team for 1986. Elio was replaced at Senna’s discretion by Johnny Dumfries a rookie who had dominated the British Formula Three Championship a Grand Prix feeder series in 1985.

Lotus Renault 98T, Autsport International, NEC, Birmingham

Despite running with a limited fuel allowance there were no limit’s on the amount of boost the turbo’s could run and after the introduction of pneumatic valve springs in the cylinder heads and a common rail injection system with water cooled intercoolers it was estimated that the Renault EF15 motors could produce upto 1300 hp at 5.5 bar boost for a qualifying run, though it transpires these figures could never be verified because there were no testing rigs that were calibrated for that kind of output.

Lotus Renault 98T, Autsport International, NEC, Birmingham

Other novel features of the Lotus 98T included two stage ride height adjustment and a six speed gearbox which was used exclusively by Dumfries.

Ayton Senna scored two more victories in Spain and Detroit along with 4 seconds and 2 thirds but although he scored 55 points 17 more than in 1985 he still finished 4th in the final championship as he had done the previous year. Johnny Dumfries meanwhile scored only 3 points and that heralded the end of his career as a Grand Prix Driver. He was replaced in by Satoru Nakajima backed by Honda who were to supply motor’s to Lotus for 1987. Despite scoring 13 points less in 1986 than they had in 1985 Lotus also finished 4th in the Constructors championship just as they had in 1985.

Thanks for joining me for this “Limited Fuel Unlimited” boost 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 !