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The greatest F1 story you've never heard


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#1 Cheater

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 08:03 AM

The Connew F1 car only raced a single time, in the 1972 Austrian GP.

 


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Gregory Wells

Never forget that first place goes to the racer with the MOST laps, not the racer with the FASTEST lap





#2 tonyp

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 08:27 AM

That was back in the days when you could build your own F1 car by buying a Cosworth and gear box and building the rest in a shed. Pretty much how a lot of teams started, Tyrell, Mclaren, Lola, etc.


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#3 Cheater

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 08:47 AM

Tony,

 

I think those "days" had been over for a good while by 1972. Doing F1 on a shoestring was a lot more common in the '50s and early '60s.

 

One of my favorite racing books is Doug Nye's "Cooper Cars", which has pics of the little hole in the wall shop where they built the 1959 and 1960 F1 world championship cars.

 

As an aside, if the narrator, Barry Boor, seems familiar, it's likely because of this THREAD.


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Gregory Wells

Never forget that first place goes to the racer with the MOST laps, not the racer with the FASTEST lap


#4 James Grandi

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 10:04 AM

The Cosworth engine was such a great piece for so long, I don't know of any other racing engine that's endured such a long (and fairly dominant) period of success.

If I remember reading right in one of Jackie Stewart's books, that engine and the Hewland gearbox was a big part of why Tyrrell decided to start building their own chassis during the 1970 season.
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#5 beardogracing

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 12:18 PM

Greg, or this site, Barry is famous for these cars. He did this while looking after his very sick wife. 
 
Barry Boor's Alternative Slot-Race World Championship
 
Barry also worked for the Connew crew.

Chris Wright

 

 


#6 Cheater

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 12:28 PM

Barry also worked for the Connew crew.


Yes, he made that clear in the video.

Gregory Wells

Never forget that first place goes to the racer with the MOST laps, not the racer with the FASTEST lap


#7 Dennis David

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 12:43 PM

Barry's an old friend from the TNF days on Atlas F1.

Tyrrell started making their own chassis because Matra would no longer sell their chassis unless they also ran the Matra engine which Stewart felt was inferior to the Cosworth.

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#8 Dennis David

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 12:46 PM

Stewart said the Matra chassis was actually a very easy chassis to drive which is basically what the early Tyrrells were when he was driving for them.

He figured he could take care of the rest. ;-)


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#9 Half Fast

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 01:09 PM

That rear suspension looks like it was constructed from matchsticks. No wonder it kept failing!

 

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#10 Uncle Fred

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 02:39 PM

I am currently building an F1 in my pantry for the 2020 season...


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#11 Dennis David

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 04:47 PM

F1 might not be around by then. ;-)


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#12 Tex

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 09:58 PM

I think those "days" had been over for a good while by 1972. Doing F1 on a shoestring was a lot more common in the '50s and early '60s.

 
I dunno, Greg; I seem to recall reading where Tyrrell did exactly that, built the first F1 cars in a shed.
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#13 Cheater

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Posted 10 July 2015 - 04:58 AM

Good point, Tex.

 

Interestingly there's a website devoted to preserving the "Tyrrell shed" and relocating it to Brooklands.
 
Tyrrell Shed

t1.jpg
 
Quoting from that website:
 
"In 1951 Ken visited a Silverstone and became hooked on motor racing. In 1952 he started his motor racing career at Snetterton in the 500cc Formula 3 class, driving a Norton-engined Cooper, but by 1959 he had decided to give up being a racing driver to concentrate on team management; he began using the Ockham premises and soon acquired a wooden ex-military building from the WRAC barracks in Stoughton, Guildford, and rebuilt it there as a new workshop for his Cooper Formula Junior Team.

 

Constructed in six bays, the structure measures approx 70 ft long, 20 ft wide and 16 ft high. It is subdivided internally into two halves by a full partition wall and has a large set of wooden double doors at one end and a set of standard double doors at the other end."

 

Not sure if a building, even old and recycled, that's 70' x 20' aligns with my definition of a shed. It's certainly a more impressive facility than the lock-up Connew utilized and was constructed as a race shop well before the '70s.

 

And Tyrrell evidently added on later...

 

t2.jpg


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Gregory Wells

Never forget that first place goes to the racer with the MOST laps, not the racer with the FASTEST lap


#14 Dennis David

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Posted 10 July 2015 - 08:48 PM

Actually the first Tyrrell was built at Derek Gardner's garage at his home in secret.

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#15 Uncle Fred

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 09:31 AM

The video reminds me of my own racing experiences that were happening at the same time many thousands of miles away. 

 

I drove a Top Fuel dragster in '71 and '72 and pulled many all-nighters rebuilding and repairing, driving hundreds of miles the next morning only to break parts that could not be repaired. We were way over our heads running in such a class, inexperienced and underfinanced.

 

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#16 Pappy

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 10:08 AM

I drove a Top Fuel dragster once myself. I drove it all the way from Atlanta to Cincinnati. That was the longest trailer I ever pulled.  :D  :dance4:  :tease:

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#17 Uncle Fred

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 10:49 AM

I left out the 100 MPH tows, the speeding tickets, flat tires, loose wheels, and crashing into things with the trailer.
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#18 Gator Bob

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 12:38 PM

I drove a Top Fuel dragster once myself. I drove it all the way from Atlanta to Cincinnati. That was the longest trailer I ever pulled.  :D  :dance4:  :tease:

 

I drove a Top Fuel dragster once myself.

 

In the golden years  when the nights were warm and the nights were young I had the chance to be "In the back of a dream car 20 feet long".
 
It was the longest car ever for me... be prepared for the 'butterfly' to jerk out of your hand if you cut the wheel too far.
 
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#19 Uncle Fred

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 12:52 PM

My girlfriend Ronnie, who was 4'10", liked to "drive" the car when we pushed it around then pits until the NHRA tech guys saw her. 


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