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Australian Muscle Car Magazine

Bathurst 1977: 1-2 thank you!

September 3rd, 2015 by Luke | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

Al7710_BH-0431lan Moffat and Colin Bond’s 1-2 finish in 1977 was undoubtedly Ford’s finest moment in local racing. AMC issue #83 is now on sale and revisits this amazing event, locates those Falcons today and interviews the g urus who made it happen.

In short, it’s the inside story on unquestionably the Blue Oval’s finest hour at Bathurst. And arguably the defining image of the company’s 90-year history in Australia. Ford fans will forever remember the two Falcons crossing the line together, just inches apart, on October 2, 1977 to win the Hardie-Ferodo  1000.

On the flipside, they are the machines that Holden fans still see in their deepest and darkest of automotive nightmares.

These are two of the most recognisable cars in local tin-top racing history. The Seven Sport vision of the #1 car – driven by team owner/driver Allan Moffat – and the #2 car, piloted by the talented Colin Bond – side-by-side down Conrod Straight on the 163rd and final lap has been replayed more times than perhaps any other piece of ‘Great Race’ historic footage.

Moffat’s car, wounded and limping with a brake problem after factory Porsche Le Mans ace Jacky Ickx had worked them hard during his stint, crossed the line first with teammate Bond playing the part of loyal back-up and crossing in second place.

“Had there been a Holden on AQ0Q0111_Blendedthe horizon, if it even looked like we were being threatened, he would have gone through into the lead so fast with my blessings it didn’t matter, but by that stage I’d had a few wins under my belt, I knew the significance of winning, I also knew the horror of losing and wasn’t inclined to change the way we finished,” Moffat told AMC.

“The front brakes went metal to metal and the pistons started to melt and popped something out. The pistons had gone out so far that the hydraulic seal jumped out of the caliper and as such all the brake fluid poured out and the smoke I saw was all the brake fluid on the hot rotor. It only took three or four brake applications and the brake fluid reservoir was empty.”

These were the cars that grabbed a hold of Australian touring car racing in 1977 by the throat – and squeezed the life out of it.

If anything they did too good a job in achieving the winning objective, sparking archrivals Holdens into life to bolster their Torana program for the following season and thus take away the joyful days of blue oval fans for the years to follow.

Much has been writteASB1080_D2_201n about the 1977 Great Race over the years, with the drivers’ memories covered extensively. Therefore we’ve endeavoured to provide fresh insights into the MFDT campaign, including the driving forces behind Ford’s funding, Smith’s contribution and the life stories of the two famous chassis. Thankfully both cars live on today ensuring, as the curtain comes down on almost a century of Ford’s manufacturing in this country, memories of the company’s finest hour will endure.

Meanwhile, elsewhere in issue #83, we name the top 25 Aussie muscle cars of the classic period, 1967 to 1978, and examine a 24-hour Nurburgring spec V8 Supercar Commodore.

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