From 1968 to 1970 Porsche scored three 1-2 victories on the fabled Monte Carlo Rally. In 1968 Vic Elford and David Stone driving a Porsche 911T won the event ahead of the 911S driven by Pauli Toivonen and M Tiukkanen, the following year Bjorn Waldegård and Lars Helmer driving a 911S finished ahead of the similar car driven by Gerárd Larrousse and JC Perramond. In 1970 the Porsche hat-trick of wins came when Waaldegård and Helmer drove today’s featured car to victory over Larrousse and M Gélin in another 911S.
The 1970 Monte Carlo had featured a concentration run to the Principality starting from eight European cities and was run in mild conditions. Porsche, Ford Alpine Renault and Lancia all entered significant works teams expected to challenge for top honours. British press interest in the, once, prestigious event was so low that Motor Sport correspondent GP, Geraint “Gerry” Phillips, opined, in March 1970, that what the Monte Carlo Rally needed to reengage Fleet Street was “… a bunch of hippies to entrench themselves on the Turini (rally stage) and spray the spectators with LSD.” !
Having won on the dry Monte Carlo Waldegård and Lars Helmer proved the versatility of the 911 by winning the Swedish Rally run on snow by 23 mins, after having a clutch replaced that required the engine to be removed in a freezing lay-by.
The second 911S model introduced in 1969 features a 2 1/4″ longer wheel base than the original, to improve the handling, though there was no increase in the overall length of the car.
The motor for the 911S was increased in size from 2 litres / 122 cui to 2.3 litres / 134 cui and with fuel injection this competition car produced 230hp, 50 more than the fuel injected road going version of the 911S.
Swede Bjorn Waldergård was a front line rally driver from 1962 to 1992, the World Rally Championship (WRC) started in 1973 and he won 16 of the 95 WRC events in which he started. His wins included the three toughest events on the WRC Circuit, the Safari, Acroplolis and RAC rallies in 1977 when he was driving for Ford. In 1979 Bjorn won the World Rally Drivers Championship driving for the works Ford and Mercedes Benz rally teams. Winning the Safari Rally for the third time in 1990, with Fred Gallagher, driving a Toyota Bjorn became the oldest person to ever win a World Championship Rally a record he holds to this day.
In his report on the road going Porsche 911S for Motor Sport in February 1970 Dennis ‘DSJ’ Jenkinson observed that a 911 cost twice as much as the 4.2 E-Type Jaguar he bought in 1966, to replace his Porsche 356, and that by 1970 the 911S had risen in price to become half the cost of a Lamborghini Miura, he concluded “It is all a question of keeping a sense of proportion.”
Thanks for joining me on this “Monte Hat-trick” edition of “Gettin a li’l psycho on tyres”, I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a slightly more outrageously flared Porsche 911. Don’t forget to come back now !