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Previews of upcoming events, Race & Rally Reports, News, Reviews, Letters and Regulation Information from Historic Motor Racing News.

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 Contents September  issue:  Latest News - Bits & Pieces - Rally News - Classic Marathon - Rally Weiz - Lahti Historic Rally - Heroes of Historic Motor Sport - Insider’s Market Report - Zandvoort Classics - Seven Questions for Erik Comas -  Nogaro Classic - VSCC Prescott - NKHTGT - Classic Silverstone - Historic Tour Dijon - Alfa Revival Cup

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Latest News in Brief

With fewer traditional F1 support races this season, the Masters were invited to stage two 30-minute races for their Gentlemen Drivers ‘60s GT grid at Silverstone to support the Pirelli Formula 1 British Grand Prix.  A 33-car, all-British, grid was duly formed, consisting of Cobras, TVR Griffiths and E-type Jaguars at the sharp end, mixed with Lotus Elans, Austin Healey 3000s, Porsche 911s, Morgan +4, etc. in other classes.

Julian Thomas was a dominant winner of the first race, as he passed  2013 British Touring Car champion Andrew Jordan on lap two and pulled out a 16-second lead, both drivers in Cobra Daytona Coupes.  James Cottingham in his Shelby Cobra was a lonely third but doing his utmost to keep contact with the leaders.  Further down, the battle for fourth place between two TVR Griffiths was terrific, with John Davison leading John Spiers for the first two-thirds before Spiers got past.  However, Davison never gave up and stayed within three-tenths of a second behind to the chequered flag.

Matthew Wrigley (Jaguar E-type), in sixth, was under pressure from Ben Short (Aston Martin DP214) and Jonathan Mitchell’s E-type.  Short passed Wrigley at Brooklands but ran wide and lost the spot.  Rob Fenn (Lotus Elan), Jeremy Welch (Austin Healey 3000M) and Mark Sumpter (Porsche 911) were other class winners.

The second race ended in drama as the two leaders continued their battle.  As on the previous day, Jordan made a demon start to get the jump on Spiers and lead the pack into Abbey  with Thomas breathing down his neck.  Thomas repeatedly tried for the lead and each time drifted wide allowing Jordan to reclaim the place, but on lap eight he finally made a move stick and took the lead.  But it wasn’t over.

This time he couldn’t shake Jordan, who applied plenty of pressure, using all the tricks he could find, flashing his headlights to distract his rival, and forcing a couple of inconsequential errors out of Thomas.  He made his final charge on the last lap.  Drawing level with Thomas on the approach to Stowe, both braking as late as they dared, Jordan’s car slid slightly, and just clipped Thomas who was turning into the corner, causing both cars to spin.  Thomas recovered ahead of Jordan but by then James Cottingham was in the lead to take a surprise win.  He was followed through by the two Griffiths of Davison and Spiers in that order, leaving Thomas in fourth and Jordan fifth.  

 

Sixth went to Matthew Wrigley again.  Class wins went to Cottingham, Eddie Powell who hauled his Lotus Elan up from the rear of the grid to 10th place, Welch, and Billy Bellinger (Morgan +4).

Historic Promotions and circuit operator MotorSport Vision (MSV) have signed a new agreement for the Donington Historic Festival, ensuring the future of the event for the next three years.  Dates for 2022 have been announced and the Festival will keep its traditional place on the calendar of the early May Bank holiday weekend, next year on 30 April-1 May.  Running capacity grids in 2021, next year should finally see the event run again with a full complement of spectators, vendors, clubs and other attractions, back after the restrictions of the last couple of years.

Those who expect to see our Oldtimer-Grand-Prix report in this issue will be disappointed.  If you hadn’t already heard, the Oldtimer, along with other events to have taken place at the Nürburgring, was cancelled for this year at the last minute.  This time it was not due to COVID, but to the extreme flooding in the Ahrweiler region of Germany.  The circuit itself survived the worst, in fact, the Nordschleife has already re-opened for ‘tourist drives,’ but its unique infrastructure in the area has meant that the emergency and rescue services are using it as a base of operations to help the many thousands of stricken people in the area.  Much of the immediate needs of those affected by the flood, such as clothing, food and water, is stockpiled there.

The Kreissparkasse Ahrweiler has set up an emergency aid account for those who want to help with donations for the victims:

IBAN: DE 86577513100000339457     BIC: MALADE51AHR

On the Saturday night of the Velodromloppet (see page 50), RHK held its award ceremony for last season’s winners, with over a hundred prizes awarded for all the classes.  Johan Lund, as last year’s RHK Champion received the biggest trophy.  RHK also took the opportunity to award its special prizes.   The Ronnie Peterson statue went to Patrik Åström, who “with the stubbornness of a fool” managed to get to last year’s Velodrome race in the autumn against all odds.  Torsten’s Memorial went to Tobias Svanberg for his positive fight in the 1000cc Cup.  The Presidents’ Trophy was awarded to Anders Dahlgren for his positivity and many years of hard work behind-the-scenes.

Entries are now open for the HSR Classic Daytona event, which takes place on 27-31 October.  The event, which features seven different Run Groups competing in succession for a full 24 hours on the iconic Daytona International Speedway 3.56-mile road course.  The various period-correct classes within each Run Group combine to make just about any closed-wheel competition sports car from the last 60 years eligible for the event.

The weekend also features the regular season HSR Daytona Historics, a points-paying round of the overall 2021 HSR racing season.

The HSR Classic Daytona will highlight Porsche as featured marque in tribute to Porsche’s record as the most successful manufacturer in the history of the Rolex 24 at Daytona, amassing a record 22 overall wins, with the first coming in 1968 and the most recent in 2010.  The winning run includes a record 11 consecutive overall victories from 1977 through 1987.

Race Ready, Promoters of the Estoril Classic race meeting, is calling for all drivers of ‘70s and ‘80s F1 cars to get in touch for a sponsored race at the Estoril Classics event, which takes place in sunny southern Portugal on 8-10 October. This will be the fourth successful year for the independent F1 race at the event, as drivers seek to prolong the summer season in the south, with generously subsidised travel for them and their cars.

This will be the second year that Peter Auto brings the Peter Auto grids and the exceptional cars that they invariably attract, and many F1 drivers will use the opportunity to bring one or more other cars for these races. This year all the Peter Auto grids will be present and the weekend will culminate in a grand season-end prizegiving to reward all the Peter Auto Champions of 2021. The races include the 2.0L Cup, for first generation Porsche 911s; Classic Endurance Racing 1 & 2 for two eras of sports and endurance prototypes; Group C Racing, for even later Endurance cars, Endurance Racing Legends, for the most recent prototypes and LMP cars up to the 2000s; the Heritage Touring Cup for cars of the late ‘60s and early ‘70s; Sixties’ Endurance, always a favourite, with a packed grid for pre-‘66 GT cars and pre-‘63 prototypes in a 2-hour format, and Peter Auto’s own eclectic mix of exceptional GT and sports racers in The Greatest’s Trophy pair of races.

Diogo Ferrão’s Iberian Endurance series has been a regular feature of this meeting from the beginning, and this year will be no exception, with a big grid of GT, prototypes and touring cars of the 70s expected.

Another feature of this weekend, which forms the cornerstone of Estoril Classics Week, is the start and finish of the Rally de Portugal Histórico, considered to be one of the best regularity events in Europe.

Contact Peter Auto (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and/or Race Ready (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) for race entries.

The race line-up for the Goodwood Revival meeting, which takes place this year on 18-19 September, has been officially announced.  Old favourites are back on the programme, some renamed, so the Kinrara Trophy for Pre-‘63 GT cars now becomes the Stirling Moss Memorial Trophy and the Goodwood Trophy, for pre and early post-war Grand Prix cars, will be called the Festival of Britain Trophy.  The prestigious RAC TT for pre-‘66 GT cars and the popular St Mary’s Trophy pair of races, run in a pro-am format for Touring cars, both remain on the programme.

A 45-minute race for Minis only, which first took place at the Revival in 2009, and then again at the Members’ Meeting in 2019 as the Betty Richmond Trophy, will come back to the Revival as the John Whitmore Trophy.

The Sportscar races span a swathe of history, from the Brooklands Trophy for pre-war sports cars, to the Sussex Trophy for sports racing cars of the ‘50s and the Freddie March Memorial Trophy for production sports cars of the same era.  Finally, there is the Whitsun Trophy for big banger unlimited sportscars up to 1966.

Along with the newly named Festival of Britain Trophy, single seaters will be racing in the Richmond Trophy for front-engined Grand Prix cars up to 1960, and the Glover Trophy for pre-‘66 GP cars.  This year’s Chichester Cup is for front-engined Formula Juniors. 

The Barry Sheene Memorial Trophy races for Grand Prix motorcycles of the 1960s remains a firm favourite on the programme, with its two-race format to include invited VIPs.

After a rather stuttering start due to postponements and cancellations, it has been confirmed that the new Group C Classics series announced by Peter Schleifer earlier in the year, will run along with his Can-Am cars and the Sportscars of FHR, at both the 16-18 July Zandvoort Historic GP and the Oldtimer Grand Prix at the Nürburgring on 13-15 August. 2Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for entries.

In our June issue we previewed the Zandvoort Grand Prix meeting (and misreported the date, for which apologies – it is to take place on 16-18 July) with much enthusiasm, looking forward to at last seeing an international historic grid on the new circuit layout.  However, in a repeat of last year’s scenario, the HSCC announced the cancellation of its Historic Formula 2 race at the meeting and, just as we go to press, the FIA has cancelled its Formula 3 European Cup race due “travel restrictions as well as the actual status of the entry.”  The FIA will refund anyone who has already paid an entry fee.

Last year the Masters, who provide the largest proportion of the content for this meeting, held its nerve and provided most of the grids they had originally announced.  Their policy is one of not letting meeting promoters down, even if it means much reduced grid sizes.  They also have many competitors coming from the continent, which (again as we go to press), is open for travel as long as one is regularly tested.  

Fortunately there are a number of home-grown and German grids only too happy to take a race slot at such a great circuit and such a prestigious event.  Promoters are not expected to have any dificulty in filling the vacant slots.

The 2021 NKHTGT season finally kicked off at the Benelux Open Races meeting at Zandvoort on 4-5 June with a big grid shared with the Triumph Competition series.  Niek van Gils was the fastest qualifier in his TVR Griffith, posting a 2:02 lap time, with Roelant de Waard (Shelby Mustang GT350) just 0.4sec in arrears.  Jos Stevens qualified third in his Lotus Elan in marked contrast to his son Bob who did not complete a single lap due to brake problems.  Duncan Huisman was fastest of the touring cars in Cees Lubbers’ Ford Falcon, just 0.4 of a second ahead of Carlo Hamilton.

Roelant de Waard finished second in both races in his Shelby Mustang GT350

The first race was slow to start, as young Bob Stevens’ brake problems had not been cured and, with brakes locked solid, he ended up stranded on the track at the back of the circuit.  This meant a long drive for the tow truck and thus a lengthy safety car period.  However once underway the three leaders held station in the one-hour race and, after the pitstops, the order remained the same.  The touring car class produced a more exciting contest, with initial leaders Huisman and Lubbers overhauled by old hands Martin Bijleveld and Jaap van der Ende, and Carlo Hamilton, who had come from the back of the pack to take second in class in an all Ford Falcon podium.

The second race, of 50 minutes, started on a damp track that soon had a dry racing line.  Jan van Elderen was quickest away this time in his E-type, hotly pursued by de Waard and van der Ende leading the touring cars.  Proceedings were interrupted again by a safety car period that ended just as the pitstop window opened.  Bob Stevens, now with working brakes on his Lotus Elan, was one of the first to stop and subsequently went on to record some very quick lap times.  When de Waard had made his pitstop, the little Lotus was ahead and stayed ahead to score a dominant win.  De Waard came home second and first in the GTS12 class.

There was mayhem in the touring car class.  First Hamilton dropped out with engine failure, then van der Ende pitted too early and was sent on his way by the team, only to receive a stop-and-go for pitlane speeding.  After the pitstops Duncan Huisman was the man on the move, taking over the lead in Lubbers’ Falcon, but Bas Jansen was not far behind in his Mustang.  He was so close in fact that he was gifted the win when Lubbers/Huisman received a 10 second penalty for a pitlane infringement.  Bijleveld/van der Ende salvaged third in class.