Brabham car off to star at Goodwood
Part of major tribute to Australia’s triple world champion
A wonderful slice of Australian motor racing history is heading to the Goodwood Revival to form a key part of a Sir Jack Brabham Driver Tribute, honouring our triple world champion 50 years after he became the only driver in F1 history to claim the world championship in a car bearing his own name.
Brabham raced and tested at Goodwood extensively during his career, and developed a number of championship-winning cars at the motor circuit.
A huge gathering of single-seater, saloon and sports cars encompassing his career as a driver and team owner will take part in a number of on-track demonstrations during September 9-10-11.
One is the BT23C-1, a Brabham factory works prototype Formula 2 car built when he was the reigning world champion and driven by Brabham and Frank Gardner in 1967.
The 1.6-litre Cosworth DVA-powered car was then sold to Frank Williams who had Piers Courage and Picko Troberg as drivers.
Based in Australia – it has been on display in the Bathurst Motor Museum – the Chad Parrish-owned Brabham is off to the Goodwood Revival for three-lap demos across each of the three days in the hands of Steve Webb, the former sports car champ (and father of Tekno Autosports V8 Supercar and GT team owner, Jonathon).
An Australian film crew is accompanying the car’s return to Goodwood and it and many other Brabham creations are destined to feature in a Documentary Australia Foundation-accredited -approved film project called Endurance, about the life and achievements of Sir Jack.
Before Gibson Freight loads it on Qantas QF1 for England, the fully restored BT23C will be thoroughly checked out by the car’s engine builder Superior Automotive and then serviced and pimped at the Webb’s Tekno Performance.
Steve Webb told Wheels he is privileged to be given the job of showing the rare Brabham to the massive crowds who flock to the Goodwood Revival (Saturday is already completely sold out).
Webb admits he is somewhere between bemused and mesmerised by a 29-page You Will Do This manual from Goodwood on what he and his mechanics must wear. A few of the instructions… mobile phones are banned, and flat caps and white overalls are obligatory.
Period dress is de rigeur and the participants and spectators get right into the spirit of the occasion. Ladies in their furs and frocks, gentlemen in their tweeds and trilbies help create the uniquely stylish atmosphere that sets the Revival apart
The Australian Racing Drivers’ Club of which Jack Brabham was member #4 is enthusiastically supporting the BT23C’s appearance at Goodwood.
Round black things added to the Formula Thunder Sports recipe
The development of Australasia’s FT5000 project has taken another step forward with arrival of new test tyres
The ambitious dream to recreate the raw, rambunctious power and excitement of Formula 5000 cars in the form of a new category called FT5000 – FT, for Formula Thunder – moved ever closer to reality when the first test tyres developed specifically for the project arrived.
The Giti-branded tyres – the rears a massive 410mm in width – are all part of the unique concept being put together by former motorsport publisher/racer Chris Lambden.
The bunch of test tyres produced by the SE Asian tyre giant sends signals that completion of the prototype car isn’t too far away.
“Giti is a big company – Singapore based, with huge road tyre manufacturing facilities in both China and the USA – and with a growing presence in motorsport,” Lambden said.
“They decided they liked what we are doing and, in co-operation with their Australian agent Russell Palmer (Motorsport Tyres Victoria), agreed to develop the tyres for us – you only have to look at these first sets of tyres to see what a superb job they’ve done already.
Lambden brought us up to speed on what’s been happening with the prototype chassis. “Some of the external engineering involved has taken a bit longer than I’d originally hoped and we’ve also made a couple of small but significant changes since we revealed the basic car.
“The overall approach among all the technical partners involved has been ‘Do it once, do it right’ – that’s really the only way to go, even if it does take a little longer and holds back the introduction of our product.”
The FT5000 car features a full carbon-fibre tub and chassis based on a design acquired from US manufacturer Swift, mated to a modified 5.0-litre Ford Coyote V8 engine and Holinger six-speed sequential gearbox, with paddle change. The overall co-ordination of the build is in the hands of Michael Borland at Borland Racing – this year celebrating 30 years as a builder of Australian Formula Ford/Vee race cars.
Lambden says the response to his project has been very positive and expects another surge in interest when the car is complete and given a shakedown run.
FT5000 plans to run a number of warm-up races at existing events through the middle of next year, before embarking on a Summer series of races both here and in NZ next December/January. In the meantime, the prototype is likely to run demonstration laps at selected events.
Newcastle poised to host Supercars’ finale next year
Council has given a tick to a Supercars street race in the second-largest NSW city
The Australian Supercars’ season finale is so close to being locked-in for next year on the streets of Newcastle after the city council agreed to officially endorse the much-touted event.
The Newcastle Herald last week reported that the local council formally approved a five-year rights fee agreement with the State Government’s Destination NSW, a tipping point which should mean the green light for the race to proceed.
The newspaper story said the council’s Lord Mayor and interim chief executive officer will now formalise the bid and report track layout and consultation plans back to council.
A brace of different suggestions for the circuit have been presented already, one taking in Newcastle’s picturesque esplanade area and waterfront
Whilst there has been opposition to the idea that NSW taxpayers should be contributing to the Supercars’ business operated by investment company Archer Capital, support for the race is strong in the Newcastle area.
The Newcastle event would to replace and unsuccessful Destination NSW-backed Homebush venue, which won’t continue beyond this year’s finale.