Tag Archives: Tom

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.


The Surtees Hill Lola – Lola Chevrolet T70 Mk II Spyder SL71/43

Team Surtees started running Lola T70’s in sports car races in 1965, for 1966 the teams proprietor, 1964 World Champion, John Surtees ran a Chevrolet Mk II spyder variant, chassis #SL71/17, in the Canadian American (Can Am) Challenge winning the inaugural Can Am race at St Jovite from pole with the car.

Surtees retired from the next couple of Can Am races with a broken oil pipe and then after a start line accident at Bridgehampton and Mosport respectively. At Laguna Seca the team had a new chassis #SL71/43, today’s featured car, which he qualified 7th but retired for a third time after 92 laps with suspension damage.

Knapfield, Lola T70, Goodwood Revival

John Surtees returned to chassis #SL71/17 at Riverside where he qualified second and won, 1962 World Champion and 1966 Indy 500 Winner Graham Hill was drafted into chassis #SL71/43 and came home third from 5th on the grid in the cars final appearance for Team Surtees.

Knapfield, Lola T70, Goodwood Revival

Surtees went into the final round of the 1966 Can Am Challenge at Stardust International Raceway in Las Vegas sharing the series lead with 1961 World Champion Phil Hill who was driving a Chaparral 2E.

Despite qualifying 4th behind Jim Hall on pole with his Chaparral team mate Phil Hill beside him and Chris Amon in a McLaren Elva in third, John Surtees forced his way through to the lead on the opening lap. John did not relinquish that lead for the entire 70 lap race and so secured the inaugural Can Am Championship.

Chassis SL71/43 was acquired by George Ralph for 1968 his best results with the car were two 11th place finishes one in the USRRC Championnat Nord-Americain race held at Mont-Tremblant from 17th on the grid and the other in the Road America Can Am race from 21st on the grid.

Current owner Paul Knapfield is seen driving the car at the 2011 Goodwood revival in these photo’s.

My thanks to Tom RA Announcer Schultz for kindly visiting his den to dig out the chassis details of today’s featured car from his copy of Lola T70 – The Design, Development & Racing History Hardcover – December 1, 2012 by John Starkey and Franco Varani.

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


Patent Monocoque – Killeen K1

Over the last couple of weeks I have been looking at the three MG powered Kayne Specials built by Colin Cooper, today’s extraordinary Killeen K1 is an MG powered special of which from 1979 to 1985 Colin became the seventh owner.

Killeen K1, Donington Park

The Killen K1 was the brain child of Tom Killeen who during World War 2 was serving on an RAF base, on the island of Malta, now the site of the Maltese national football stadium, where he was impressed by the rugged strength and easy maintenance of the Supermarine Spitfire aircraft which operated there.

In 1950 Tom designed the Killeen K1 using a similar monocoque construction technique to that used in the Spitfire, using three equally spaced steel ‘hoops’ around which Tom attached Hiduminium alloy sheets to end up with a structure that was lighter and more rigid than the traditional ladder or space frame type chassis that were prevalent at the time. This type of monocoque construction which was by no means the first time it had been used in a racing car, that honour is thought to belong to the 1915 Cornelian Indy Car, the K1 just predates the semi monocoque D-Type Jaguar of 1954 and preempted the Lotus 25 by a full decade.

Tom Killeen took out a patent on his design in 1952 and proceeded to build the car with independent front suspension and de Dion rear and an stage two MG XPAG for his friend Jack Newton who subsequently raced the K1 in 1953. In 1954 Tom acquired a special motor for the K1, from John Thornely of MG, that had been built for the 1954 MG EX-179 speed record project. Colin found that this motor featured a separated cylinder head cooling system that was sealed at the top of the engine block.

Killeen K1, Donington Park

Tom Killeen who is known to have worked for Jensen’s from at least 1947 to 1965 is known to have designed at least 19 vehicles including motorcycles all built or to have been built with monocoque structure.

More detailed information and photographs on the Killeen K1, which now resides in New Zealand, and the work of Tom Killeen can be found on Bob Allans’ Killeen dedicated website linked here.

My thanks to Colin Cooper, who is seen at the wheel of the Killeen K1 at Donington above, for sharing some of the stories behind the cars he has owned and built and to Bob Allan who helped me get in touch with Colin.

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


Ferrari’s First F1 Design – Ferrari 125 F2 Spec #0114

In 1948 Ferrari built his first dedicated 125 F1 Grand Prix cars known to conform with the set of rules known as formula one and entered three of them into the 1948 Italian Grand Prix, held at Valentino Park on the 5th of September. Frenchman Raymond Sommer brought his 125 F1 home in third place. The Ferrari 125 WAS NOT however the first Ferrari ever to be entered in a race run to formula one regulations.

Ferrari 125, Donington Museum

The 125 F1 shared it’s 1.5 litre / 91.5 cui super charged V12 engine design, by Giocchino Colombo, with earlier successful Ferrari sports cars including the 166 series and the 125S series.

 Ferrari 125, Donington Museum

This particular chassis thought to have been built in 1949 for the factory racing team, appears to have been successfully raced with a normally aspirated 2 litre / 122 cui Colombo V12 to conform to the second tier Formula Two regulations in 1951 by Englishman Peter Whitehead in Europe and Australasia.

Ferrari 125, Donington Museum

During the late 1950’s this chassis had a Chevy V8 installed which was replaced by a remanufactured 2 litre V12 when Tom Wheatcroft had it restored in the 1970’s for his Donington Collection where these photographs were taken.

The 125 F1 was not a great success against the older Alfa Romeo’s, which led Ferrari to build his next formula one cars with larger unsupercharged engines with which one of his cars would win Ferrari’s first championship formula one race in 1951.

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


Move Over Henry Let Rover Take Over – Reliant Scimitar GTE V8

The Reliant Scimitar GTE can trace it’s origins back to two vehicles, the chassis is a direct descendent of Reliant Sabre and the fibre glass body which is a direct descendent Ogle SX250 a privately commissioned prototype coupe built on a Daimler SP250 chassis.

Reliant Scimitar GTE V8, Castle Combe C&SCAD

The Ogle SX250 design, which was offered to and turned down by Sir Williams Lyons who owned Daimler, was purchased by Reliant and with a few modifications required to fit the Reliant Sabre 6 chassis became the Reliant Scimitar GT SE4, production models were powered by a variety Ford engines in straight 6 and V6 configurations.

Reliant Scimitar GTE V8, Castle Combe C&SCAD

In 1968 Tom Karen, who had completed the design of the Ogle SX250 after originator David Ogle had been killed on his way to the Brands Hatch racing circuit, and Peter Bailey worked on the design of the Reliant Scimitar GTE.

Reliant Scimitar GTE V8, Castle Combe C&SCAD

With the addition of a rising waist line the GTE was a development of the 1966 Ogle Triplex Scimitar GTS concept car which had featured 43 square feet of safety glass, a vehicle eventually purchased by Prince Phillip.

Reliant Scimitar GTE V8, Castle Combe C&SCAD

Like the preceding Reliant Scimtar GT SE4 Ford engines were used to power the GTE SE5 production models though only the 2994 / 182.7 cui Essex V6. Interestingly the aforementioned Peter Bailey acquired the prototype GTE and had a 4735 cc/ 289 cui Ford V8 fitted which gave the prototype a top speed of 150 mph.

Reliant Scimitar GTE V8, Castle Combe C&SCAD

Somewhere along the way this Scimitar GTE has acquired a 3528 cc / 215.9 cui V8 engine which the engine size and badges suggest is an all alluminium Rover Buick derived unit which could have been sourced from any number of vehicles ranging from MGB V8, Rover 3.5 Coupe, Rover SDI, Triumph TR8 or conceivably even a Land or Range Rover.

My thanks to Dave Poole of sporting-reliants.com whose excellent website covers the Reliant story in fascinating illustrated detail.

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


Mission Possible – Bristol Cars Ltd

Last Monday 27 employees of Bristol Cars Ltd passed through these gates on their way to work.

00 09 03 21 017sc

This morning only 5 employees will return through these gates as the manufacturing arm of Bristol Cars Ltd has been placed into administration with RSM Tenon.

01 Series 6

Tom Maclennan of RSM Tenon is quoted as saying ” There have been a number of immediate redundancies due to the financial position of the company, (but) we are maintaining the sales and service operations so customers will continue to be supported.”

02 Speedsters

Though not without some criticism over the way the company has been run in the past, there has been a significant amount of support for Bristol Cars Ltd on the internet, in the light of this unfortunate development, from owners and non owners alike as evidenced by threads on pistonheads.com, The Nostalgia Forum and particularly on the Bristol Owners Club forum where members recall many of the Bristol Cars Ltd team with fondness having known them for many years.

03 Blenheims

One member of the Bristol Owners Club, Teb Marius from the Netherlands with professional experience in handling these types of financial situations is calling for professional assistance from members and non members in the UK to investigate the possibility putting together a Bristol Owners Club led Consortium to negotiate a viable future for Bristol Cars Ltd with the administrators. Send Teb an e-mail if you can offer any such professional assistance.

04 Fighters

Alternatively for anyone with the financial muscle who wants make a bid for the manufacturing division of Bristol Cars Ltd, Tom MacLennan and Trevor Binyon at RSM Tenon have been appointed joint administrators of the business and would be interested to hear from you.

In anticipation of good news about the future of Bristol Cars Ltd I hope you’ll join me again at “Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres”. Don’t forget to come back now !


Intelnet Carceaology Detective Agency – Ferrari 375 Pininfarina America #0319AL

Today’s Ferrari Friday blog is a real team effort and I’d like to start by thanking four people without whom you would be staring at a funky photo of a Meridian Bridge in Spain. First thanks must go to the amazing Mr Ed Arnaudin who took today’s photograph nearly 54 years ago in 1957, second thanks must go to Ed’s son Steve who took the time and patience to sort through his Dad’s slides scan them and then send them to me 3,500 miles away.

Third there are two people at Ferrari Chat who deserve a special mention, first Kare in Helsinki Finland for having the patience to answer each of my dumb *ss questions before convincing myself that what he said in the first place id correct and finally special thanks must go to Boudewijn Berkhoff who took it upon himself to bring a faded 54 year old slide back to life.

Ed’s photo is not the easiest to analyse because if you search Google Images you’ll find several vehicles similar but frustratingly with completely different names in particular the 250 Pininfarina Europa and the 375 Pininfarina America.

This only makes sense when one learns that in 1953 Ferrari launched two cars one at the European market the 250 Europa with a 3 litre 183 CUI Colombo designed short block V12 and the other aimed at the US market with a later 4.5 litre 274 CUI Aurelio Lambredi designed long block V12, both cars looked more or less identical with body work by Pininfarina, however they were not assembled on a production line so each differed from the other with varying degrees of obviousness.

In all 21 Europa’s were built mostly with Pininfarina bodies while 45 300 hp 150 mph 375’s were built from 1953 to 1955, just 8 of those 45 had Pininfarina bodies and one of those was a one off coupe with a wrap around windsceen which makes the car in Ed’s photo just one of seven. But which one ?

Once the car model was identified it was relatively easy to find out the whereabouts of those seven Pininfarina bodied cars today; three are red, one is two tone silver, another is silver but with a much larger chrome grill, one is green, another blue and the last is black.

Thanks to the aforementioned Kare I found out that the black 375 was originally grey with red interior delivered bearing the chassis number #0319AL to a Mr Carpenter. Thanks to Tom Roland we have 21st September 1957 as the probable date this photo was taken.

I’d also like to thank Aardy, tx246, Motob, of2worlds, and Ed Niles for chipping in with opinions that hopefully has seen an approximation of the truth emerge.

Hope you have enjoyed today’s detective mystery trip in an extremely rare motor car and that you’ll join me in thanking everyone who helped make today’s blog possible.

Join me again tomorrow for a look at another Italian vehicle photographed by Ed, don’t forget to come back now !