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Contents December Issue Issue:  Latest News - Bits & Pieces - Rally News - Carrera Panamericana - Rallye du Valais - Daytona Classic 24 - Deux Tours d’Horloge - Alfa Revival Cup - Jerez Historic Festival - Historic Tour Lédenon - MRL Silverstone GP - Goodwood Members Meeting - Algarve Classic Festival

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Latest News in Brief

While the HSCC’s championships were decided either at Mallory Park in September or at the Silverstone Finals meeting in October (see our November issue), the International Formula 2 Series was only able to name its 2021 Champions after the Dijon Motors Cup meeting in October.   

From 10 races at five events, top overall scorer was Nick Pancisi (March 712) who claimed the Jochen Rindt Trophy for 1600cc F2 cars.  Pancisi had a tremendous season to finish clear of rivals Julian Stokes (Tecno) and Paul Bason (March 712).

Marc Mercer (March 73B) clinched the Vern Schuppan Trophy for the earlier Formula Atlantics from Mark Goodyear, who switched from his Lotus 59 to a March 75B in the middle of the season.  Callum Grant’s blistering pace in his March 79B, which included a famous overall win at Donington Park, ensured that he won the Gilles Villeneuve Trophy for the later Formula Atlantics.

 

Highest F2 Scorer was Nick Pancisi, who claimed the Jochen Rindt Trophy with his 1600 March 712 Photo Carlo Senten

The 2-litre F2 cars in the Giacomelli Trophy usually set the overall pace and it was Matt Wrigley (March 782) who took the Trophy by a single point in the final race of the season at Dijon.  Andrew Smith (March 742) and Miles Griffiths (Ralt RT1) ensured that it was never easy for the young driver.

Travel restrictions due to COVID and a general reluctance to race outside the UK, meant that the only international element of the series this year was Dijon.  Nonetheless, more than 60 drivers took part during the season with UK competitors joined by drivers from Denmark, France, Italy, Germany, Austria and the USA.

 

The Club says that plans for a return to a full pan-European schedule for 2022 are well advanced and the calendar will be announced shortly.  Andy Dee-Crowne, CEO of the HSCC, said, “Our UK-based drivers have missed competing with our European friends this year and restoring an international schedule is our prime aim for 2022.”

When the Wellington-based MG Car Club was forced to cancel this year’s popular MG Classic motor racing meeting, due to be held at Manfield Circuit Chris Amon over the weekend of 13-14 November, it eliminated the first round of 2021-22 MSC NZ F5000 Tasman Cup Revival Series, which has run a close-to-home calendar over the last two years, and was continuing the strategy for the 2021-2022 season.  Though a race meeting was possible under current rules, the New Zealand quarantine and travel restriction provisions have effectively split the country in two until the second week of December at the earliest…. 

Fortunately, the second round of the series is not scheduled to run until the second-to-last weekend  in January next year, “though at the moment,” says NZ F5000 Association committee member and spokesperson Glenn Richards, “there are still no guarantees – even that far out!”  COVID willing, the rest of the season looks like this:  21-23 Jan 2022 – Taupo Historic Grand Prix - Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park Taupo NZ; 4-6 Feb - Skope Classic - Mike Pero Motorsport Park Ruapuna Christchurch NZ; 26-27 Mar 2022– HRC Legends of Speed meeting Hampton Downs Waikato NZ.  Organisers are talking about adding another round if the evolving situation permits.

A mixed season for most series, including for Peter Auto, has meant that not all the usual participants were able to compete in all the races.  This has brought some interesting season winners to the fore.  

Peter Auto quite rightly gives as much importance to a class win as an overall win and has published its 28 class winners, starting with Xavier Datraut, who won the 2.0L Cup for 2021, the only series that has an overall winner and no classes.  In CER 1, though there were winners in each class, Emmanuel Brigand came away with the most points this season, driving a Chevron B19.  Frank Morel did likewise in CER 2, taking 104 points with his TOJ SC206 in the under 2-litre prototype class to Beat Eggimann’s 101 points in the same class.    In the highly contested Heritage Touring Cup, Maxime Guenat (FORD Capri RS 3100) scored more points than any other competitor, winning the TC2 Class, while Guy Fabrice Mestrot took the Index of Performance in his 1600 Ford Escort RS.  Yvan Mahé won the Sixties’ Endurance in a Shelby Cobra Daytona, narrowly beating Christophe Van Riet’s Cobra, and in the same series Simon Nobili took the index of Performance in his MGA.  

A mixed season for most series, including for Peter Auto, has meant that not all the usual participants were able to compete in all the races.  This has brought some interesting season winners to the fore.  

Peter Auto quite rightly gives as much importance to a class win as an overall win and has published its 28 class winners, starting with Xavier Datraut, who won the 2.0L Cup for 2021, the only series that has an overall winner and no classes.  In CER 1, though there were winners in each class, Emmanuel Brigand came away with the most points this season, driving a Chevron B19.  Frank Morel did likewise in CER 2, taking 104 points with his TOJ SC206 in the under 2-litre prototype class to Beat Eggimann’s 101 points in the same class.    In the highly contested Heritage Touring Cup, Maxime Guenat (FORD Capri RS 3100) scored more points than any other competitor, winning the TC2 Class, while Guy Fabrice Mestrot took the Index of Performance in his 1600 Ford Escort RS.  Yvan Mahé won the Sixties’ Endurance in a Shelby Cobra Daytona, narrowly beating Christophe Van Riet’s Cobra, and in the same series Simon Nobili took the index of Performance in his MGA.  

Sébastien Mathieu (GT/Tourism) and Lionel Robert (Monoplaces/Protos) are the 2021 French historic racing champions.  

Aged 37, Mathieu has been a staunch supporter of the GT Classic Trophy from the start, first in a Porsche 964 RSR, and then at the helm of a BMW M3 GTR developed by himself and his GBF Racing team.  Engine problems in the BMW forced him to return to the Porsche for the end of this season.  Of the ten GT Classic races this year, Mathieu won eight, finishing the other two in second place.  He succeeds one of his teammates, Laurent Sabatier, and Franck Quagliozzi, who tied for the title in 2020, as French GT/Tourism champion.

Returning to compete for a full season in Formula Renault Classic, Lionel Robert saw only one victory escape him this year, following a mechanical breakdown.  At 59 years of age, the Manceau with nine participations in the 24 hours of Le Mans finally became a champion of France, the title having escaped him by little on five different occasions, the first times in 1980 and 1985, in the then modern Formula Renault championship.  Robert came second in the first Historic Tour in 2015, and in 2016, after nine victories in the first nine races, he ceded to his son and student Antoine Robert, who has gone on to forge a career as a racing driver.  Aboard a Martini similar to the one he was driving in 1985 Robert, who is active in many forms of motor sport, as well as a race coach and team manager, succeeds the triple crowned Frédéric Rouvier, but also his own son!

Amongst the various championship announcements that come at this time of year, the Masters have declared their winners.  These include Mike Cantillon, who took the FIA Historic Formula One title for post-‘78 cars with his Williams FW07C, and Lukas Halusa, who scored six wins from 12 starts to take pre-‘78 honours.  Steve Brooks (Lola T70 Mk3B), shares the 2021 FIA Sportscar title with Tom Bradshaw, who drove his Chevron B19 to equal points overall, while Chevron B8 pair and Bonnier class winners Charles Allison and Peter Thompson were joint runners-up.  John Spiers took the pre-‘66 category in his McLaren M1B.

Shaun Lynn (Peugeot 908 HDi FAP) became the undisputed Masters Endurance Legends prototype champion and Michael McInerney took the GT division with his Mosler MT900R by a single point.  Andrew Haddon won the 2021 Gentlemen Drivers title in his Lotus Elan with a slim points advantage over the rapid C2 class winners Mark Holme and Jeremy Welch (Austin Healey 3000).  The under two-litre cars fended off the Mustangs and Galaxies to win the Pre-‘66 Touring Car championship, with the pairing of Marcus Jewell and Ben Clucas sharing top honours with Richard Dutton, both on 24 points driving Lotus Cortinas.

The 2022 Tour Auto will start with its traditional exhibition day in Paris on Monday, April 25, after which the 230 crews will set off on a route to discover the hidden charms and culture of the French countryside.  Next Year’s programme will include some 2,000kms over five legs with sessions on four circuits and a dozen of special stages on closed roads.  Unusually, the event will finish in the Principality of Andorra, a state visited once only in its history, in 2002, with the final parc fermé in Andorra la Vella, the highest capital of Europe at 1023ms.

Concerned to renew and refresh the variety of cars each year, the organisers highlight a type of car that contributed to the history of the Tour de France Automobile between 1951 and 1973.  In 2022, the event will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Ferrari 365 GTB4’s 1972 double and Jean-Claude Andruet’s victory, in the car already nicknamed “Daytona”.

A tribute will also be paid to the “pioneers”, the cars of the major marques that took part in the very first post-war editions, between 1951 and 1954, such as Delahaye 235, Ferrari, Fiat 8V, Gordini barchettas, Jaguar C-type, Osca, etc.

At least two Historic Sports Car Club racing champions for 2021 were crowned when the club returned to Mallory Park for the first time in a decade for a weekend of racing on 18-19 September.  Despite the clash with the Goodwood Revival meeting, meaning grids were somewhat down in numbers, the weekend delivered some great racing in generally warm and sunny weather except for a torrential downpour on Sunday morning that disrupted qualifying for a while. 

Historic Road Sports racer John Davison did enough in Saturday’s opening race to put the title beyond doubt.  However, it had been a fraught morning, when his Elan’s brakes seized in qualifying and the car had to be lifted back to the paddock.  Repaired in time, Davison duly raced to victory.  But there was more trouble to come in race 2, when a rear wheel departed and ended his day.  Still, it was a case of mission accomplished in championship terms. 

Another champion crowned was Jeremy Timms, who took two resounding victories in Historic Formula 3 to settle the title in the final races of the season with his Chevron B15.  After a soaking wet and shortened qualifying session the grid was very jumbled and Timms started only eighth.   However, he was quickly into his stride and swept up the order to move ahead of Ian Bankhurst and Steve Seaman in a thoroughly entertaining race.  Sam Wilson had been right with them in Paul Waine’s De Sanctis but spun at Gerard’s and a starter motor problem ensured that he was not able to continue.

 

Photos Charlie Wooding

At the end of the afternoon Timms had an easier time to romp clear in race 2, as Wilson, Bankhurst, Simon Armer and an inspired Mike Walker battled.  Bankhurst finally took the place from Walker who had his best performance so far in Historic F3.  Wilson went out when the De Sanctis lost drive and Armer had his March cut out at the Hairpin on the final lap.  He coasted down the hill to get to the finish line but dropped several places as a result.

Historic Formula Ford 2000 featured prominently with a busy double-header.  Murray Shepherd was the sole Classic FF2000 runner, so he joined the near-capacity grid and ended up taking a weekend double despite the very best efforts of Historic front- runners Benn Simms and Ian Pearson.

Another strong 70s Road Sports grid was headed by Will Plant although in the opener he had to deal with the fast-starting John Williams and then had Dave Karaskas (TVR 3000M) and his father Richard as constant shadows.  In the second race Plant was away clear until his Morgan +8 lost oil pressure and he quickly turned it off and parked up.  

Mike Gardiner moved ever closer to the Historic Touring Car title with victory in the opening race, but he had Neil Wood as a constant and determined rival in the flying Anglia and less than a third of a second split them at the flag.  Wood was looking forward to trying to turn the tables in the second race later on Sunday only to find Gardiner absent after the Lotus Cortina suffered alternator failure and was put away.

Both Formula Ford categories delivered some fine racing and there was a double victory in the Historics for Tom McArthur who had Horatio Fitz-Simon as a constant shadow in the opening race, with a quarter of a second splitting them after 18 flat out laps.  Matt Wrigley pipped Samuel Harrison for third place as the impressive Mark Bates, racing the Alexis Mk15 of Robin Haslam, showed his pace by running fifth, right on their tail.

McArthur had things slightly easier in the second race as Fitz-Simon was more occupied dealing with the constant threat from Harrison.  That’s how they finished with Bates edging ahead of Wrigley for fourth. 

Jordan Harrison took a big step towards the Classic Formula Ford title with two impressive victories in his Lola T540E.  The main action in the race lay in the contest for a second as Rick Morris and Stuart Kestenbaum took on teenage upstart Samuel Harrison.  Over 50 years their junior, Samuel Harrison actually got through to second at one point, but was then edged back, having lost a little time with a moment on the brakes into the Esses.  He finally took fourth behind the two hugely experienced elder statesman of Classic Formula Ford racing.

 

2021 was a good year for Norwegian historic racers, with five race meetings instead of the usual four, thanks to the opening of a new circuit.  The season started at Vålerbanen in May, where there was great enthusiasm for getting started after a long boring winter.  Bengt-Åce Gustavsson reviews the season

In the class for older cars, it was clear that the duel would be, as usual, between Atle Ramberg (Ford Escort 1300 GT) and John A Johansen (Mini 1275 GT), and this proved to be the case throughout the season, the pair going head-to-head over ten races.  Ramberg, proved his, and his car’s, superiority by completing a near-perfect season, winning eight of the ten rounds to take the 2021 title for Period G (1966-1971).  Though able to largely keep pace, it was only at the new circuit of Sokndal that Johansen was able to win a race. 

André Saethern Photos Jörn Pettersen

In the newer classes, it looked as though Evald Holstad (Ford Escort RS1600), Mathias Havdal (Porsche 911 Carrera RSR) and André Saethern, who had made his debut with his Opel Kadett B last year, would be the season front-runners.  Havdal had sold his Ford to Holstad  so it must have been galling to be beaten by his old car first time out at the first meeting of the season at Vålerbanen, but the Porsche driver was able to turn the tables in the second race.

The second race of the year was at Rudskogen and the Asfalt Super cars meeting, but without any super cars either from Sweden or Denmark.  Tor Magne Tjemsland brought his beautifully presented  BMW M3 E30 to vanquish both Havdal and Holstad in two races first time out, and continued his winning streak at Sokndal as well.

Atle Ramberg and John A Johansen

For the fourth round, the circus returned to Rudskogen for the Asphalt Classic – the largest event for historic racing in Norway, but unfortunately with very limited international participation this year.  Here, Ramberg scored two of his wins, and Hans Peter Havdal managed to  beat Holstad, who only came third behind Rune Rödset (Opel Kadett GT/E).  In the second race, Tjemsland was back in charge.

The final was run in September back at Vålerbanen, where Tjemsland took two more wins ahead of Havdal and Rödset in race 1 and Rödset and Holstad in race 2.  However, it was the most consistent driver of the season, André Saethern that took the Category G,H,I title in his Opel Kadett, while runners up Evald Holstad and Mathias Havdal took turns winning or breaking, while Tjemland scored fewer class points and finished sixth in the championship.

In Norway, the championship has been divided into three different categories. The oldest class is for all pre-1966 cars, and there Ola Svendsen was crowned champion in his Ford Cortina Lotus, with Lars Kristian Ekorness (Morris Cooper S) and Jon Asakskogen (Ford Mustang) runners-up.

A total of 80 drivers participated during the season.

After a successful support race for the Le Mans 24 Hours this year, Peter Auto has announced that there will be an Endurance Racing Legends race at next year’s Total Energies 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps organised by SRO.  In collaboration with Stéphane Ratel, Patrick Peter’s ex-partner in the famous mid-‘90s BPR series for many of the same cars, the event will be celebrating 30 years of SRO’s involvement in the GT championship.  As at Le Mans, a grid of sixty GT1, GT2 and GT3 cars is expected.  “We are planning an exceptional race that brings together cars from all the different series we have organised over the years,” said Ratel.  “The participants and others who have marked this period will also be invited,” he continued.

Getting back to more normal times, news from Goodwood is that the 79th Members’ Meeting will be held on 9-10 April 2022, the Festival of Speed is scheduled for 23-26 June, and the Revival Meeting will be held on 16-18 September.

Photo DominicJames