Tag Archives: Webb

Heavy Metal Classic – Standlake Arena

With a full entry of 228 National Bangers and the first date of the season the Heavy Metal Classic at Standlake Arena near Witney in Oxfordshire attracted a full stadium of spectators and almost full overflow car park despite the promise of heavy rain and just above freezing temperatures.

MG B GT, Amie Chandler, Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

I confess my brain was so frozen I do not remember too many details of what went on though I do remember an interesting conversation regarding the machinations of Dr Jonathon Palmer’s empire based at Brands Hatch, above the #418 MG B GT was driven by Amie Chandler in the “Under 2 litre RWD Classics” class.

Ford Granada Estate, Pat McPhilimy, Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

Pat McPhilimy strikes a professional pose in his #42 Ford Granada Estate during the first race for the Unlimited Class.

Rolls Royce Corniche, Garry Webb, Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

The Unlimited Class featured 2 Rolls Royces, above the rare Rolls Royce Corniche driven by Garry Webb is seen passing the #155 Ford Zodiac Mk IV driven by Robert Philips.

Ford Ka, Paul, Quinell, Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

Paul Quinell easily won the unofficial most trashed rear axle with both wheels still attached and rotating award in his #469 Ford Ka which ran in the Micro Banger Class.

Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

Peter Dodge guides his BMC Farina, could be an Austin or Morris but is almost certainly not a Wolseley, past the wreck that comprises the #909 Triumph Toledo driven by Jamie “Mr Blobby” Duff and #183 Morris Marina Estate Jack Strudwick that has been rear ended by an unidentified competitor.

Morris Marina Van, Billy Bond, Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

Short on steering control but still making progress Billy Bond dips his #72 Morris Marina van in the infield mud above.

BMC Farina, James Dodge, Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

James Dodge like Peter pedaling a BMC Farina engages in a bit of rim riding hoping he will not get T boned by the green #632 Ford Cortina driven by Kallum Reed.

Jaguar Mark X, Steven Hart, Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

The #70 Jaguar Mark X driven by Steven Hart above in the Unlimited Class sports a deflector on the bonnet, how effective it was at either keeping the occupant dry or giving him improved vision is debatable.

Ford Granada, Randy Mulder, Heavy Metal Classic, Standlake Arena

I’m pretty sure the winning car of the unlimited class was the #88 Ford Granada driven by Randy Mulder, though looking at the entry list I see there was a second #88 entered for Billy Page so I am now not quite so sure.

Either way after an entertaining afternoon getting rather wet and cold watching 228 Bangers slip and slide through the mud I headed back to the overflow car park and was pleased to get my Golf Estate out of the parking facility without the aid of a four wheel drive pickup truck that was standing by just in case.

Thanks for joining me on this “Heavy Metal Classic” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres.” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at another Daytona 24 Hour competitor. Don’t forget to come back now !


Jimmy Jimmy – Race Retro 2013

Despite the absence of any signs of a thaw to this winter and record fuel prices last weekends Race Retro held at Stoneleigh showed that there are plenty of people looking to have fun on four veteran, vintage and classic wheels powered by internal combustion motors during the season ahead here are some of the highlights.

Lotus Climax 25, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

The central theme for this years Race Retro was the 1963 World Drivers Championship and World Constructors Championship wins for Jim Clark and Lotus. Above is the Lotus Climax 25 chassis R5 with which Jim narrowly failed to win the 1962 Championship thanks to a loose oil plug just twenty laps from home.

Lotus Elan 1500, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Among several other cars that Jim Clark drove, on the Classic Team Lotus stand, was this Lotus Elan 1500 road car which featured with a kilted Jim Clark in a Lotus ad campaign that can be seen in the back ground.

Lotus Ford 79, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Fifteen years after Lotus scored their first world constructors championship Mario Andretti won the 1978 World Drivers Championship and with the help of Ronnie Peterson secured Team Lotus their seventh and final World Constructors Championship with the aid of the Lotus Ford 79. Seen on the Vintage Race Car (Europe) stand above is the Lotus 79 chassis R3 which Mario drove to victory in the 1978 Spanish, French and German Grand Prix and that Jean Pierre Jarrier qualified on pole for the 1978 Canadian Grand Prix.

Lotus Ford 69, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Another interesting Lotus on display was the Lotus 69 Formula Ford car that Tiff Needel won in a competition run by Autosport in 1970. Tiff Needel went on to become a one time Grand Prix Starter in 1980 and sports car racer through until the 1990’s. Tiff will be racing his Lotus 69 with which he started his career at Thruxton’s Easter Revival meeting at the end of March.

Penske Mercedes Benz PC26, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Also on the Thruxton stand was one of the five 1997 Mercedes Benz powered Penske PC26s of the type which Paul Tracey drove to the Penske team’s 99th CART victory at Gateway. That victory would prove to be the last for a car designed and constructed by the Penske Cars workshop in Poole, Dorset, Engand and it would be three years before the Penske Racing would score their 100th victory in the CART Series.

Lola Chevrolet T140, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

On the Historic Sports Car Club (HSCC) stand was another car that was built in the UK at Lola Cars but raced exclusively in the United States Formula A open wheel series in period. This Lola T140 chassis SL140-7 appears to have been purchased from Lola’s US agent Carl Haas by a Honda dealer Jerry Rosbach in 1968 and raced very little before being crashed. It returned to the UK via e-bay and was restored by Hardy Hall restorations to near factory condition for it’s new owner Richard Summers.

WSM MGB, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

When I visited Race Retro for the first time in 2011 I came across a WSM Sprite for the first time. This year the MG Car Club stand featured the unique WSM MGB which like the Sprites features an aluminium body designed by Douglas Wilson Spratt and built by Peels Coachworks.

Rover 2000SC P6, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Polands reigning 1965 European Rally Champion Sobislaw Zasada entered the 1966 Monte Carlo Rally in this Rover 2000SC. Starting from Warsaw his rally came to an end against a rock face just outside Monte Carlo. Subsequently the car was driven by works driver Ann Hall who used it eventually as her daily driver. The car was used to develop the 2000 TC motor and for development of the second generation Rover 2200. It’s for sale if anybody is interested please do not hesitate to get in touch, usual disclaimers apply.

Ratty, Alpine Renault A110 Berlinette, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

In 1973 Alpine Renault claimed the World Rally Championship with the A110 Berlinette models, this particular originally works prepared competition car was acquired by Roger Clark for Pat Moss to drive in the 1973 British RAC Rally Championship. Pat named the car “Ratty” and after the 1973 chamionship it served as a show car before hibernating for 20 years.’Ratty’ was restored to running order by current owner Chris Rabbets of Roadspeed in 2003.

WB91, Time Traveller, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

I’ve been promising myself a trip to Santa Pod for some years now, Bob Hawkins 167 mph small block Chevy sling shot dragster WB 91 Time Traveller was a welcome reminder that I do not have the luxury of travelling back in time and so this year there will be no excuses.

BMC Ford, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

On Jubilee Day last year I managed to find my way to Aldershot Raceway where the #773 BMC Ford Heritage F2 stock car seen above was driven by Nick Whitby, turns out this is a replica of the car his built drove in 1968 with a BMC 1100/ADO16 look alike body and Ford chassis and motor of varying vintages. If you have never been to a stock car race I’d definitely recommend it as a fun day out with the kids the Heritage F2 calender can be seen on this link.

White Whistling Billy, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Finally had a great time talking to steam car enthusiast Dr Robert R. Dyke who has recreated a 120 mph White Sprint Car that used to rip up the dirt tracks in 1905. Nicknamed Whistling Billy the original set a closed track record of 74 mph on the 4th July 1905 of nearly 74 mph with Webb Jay aboard. The car is scheduled to appear at the Sywell Classic Pistons and Props event at the end of September.

My thanks to everyone who enthusiastically contributed to today’s blog at Race Retro 2013.

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


Perfect Car For A Wedding #7 – Ford Escort Mexico

Today’s Ford Escort is has a multipurpose history going back to 1973 when it was built along with 19 others for Motor Circuit Developments (MCD) to take part in an ad hock celebrity series of races.

Ford Escort Mexico, Oulton Park, Gold Cup

The Ford Escort Mexico was a not so limited edition special built to celebrate the success of Hannu Mikkola driving FEV 1H, which I looked at last week, and his team mates in the 1970 Daily Mirror World Cup Rally that covered 16,000 miles in 25 days.

Ford Escort Mexico, Oulton Park, Gold Cup

Built at Ford’s Advanced Vehicle Operations (AVO) plant in Aveley Mexico’s came with a strengthened competition spec unitary body shell known as the type 49, by all accounts a much copied item these days. The Mexico like FEV 1H was powered by the Kent cross flow motor albeit only the 1600 cc / 97 cui version with an 8 valve head which produced 96 hp.

Ford Escort Mexico, Oulton Park, Gold Cup

Ford of Britain and John Webb of MCD introduced the idea of celebrity racing in 1970 inviting pro’s and celebrities alike to race Ford Capri’s which helped broaden the appeal of motor racing well beyond seasoned anoraks like your truely. When I was first taken to a race meeting at Brands Hatch in 1973 Ford were promoting the 3 litre / 183 cui Ford Consul GT executive saloon in celebrity races, round the world yachtsman Chay Blyth winning on that occasion.

Ford Escort Mexico, Oulton Park, Gold Cup

For the 1974 season a batch of 20 Celebrity Escort Mexico’s, all registered in 1973 was upgraded at AVO to racing spec with a safety cage, three point harnesses on both front seats, battery cut off switch, fire proof rear bulkhead with the only concessions to performance being uprated Bilstein dampers and RS 4 spoke alloy wheels.

Ford Escort Mexico, Oulton Park, Gold Cup

This particular Celebrity car is known to have been driven to a win by Radio and Television presenter Noel Edmonds. Lella Lombardi, Tony Lanfranchi, Patrick Neve and Richard Lloyd also drove XNO272L through the course of the 1974/1975 seasons.

Ford Escort Mexico, Oulton Park, Gold Cup

After it’s celebrity racing career was over MCD director John Webb took the car over and used it until the early 1980’s, even used it on his wedding day. For a period during the 1980’s this car was kept in storage until it was dusted off and put on display. John sold the car in 1990 and the current owner acquired it in 1992 since when he has used it on classic car tours, holidays with an occasional sprint and hillclimb thrown in for good measure.

Thanks for joining me on this ‘Perfect Car For A Wedding #7’ edition of ‘Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres’ I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I will be marking the 500th edition of ‘Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres’ with a look at a Kurtis. Don’t forget to come back now !

PS Just noticed that according to the WordPress Post Counter this is my 500th blog. I’d like to sincerely thank everyone who has contributed to, followed and especially recommended what has become the GALPOT journey of discovery.