The day the Falcon died proved to be a relatively low-key occasion at Broadmeadows. No pomp. Little ceremony. No outsiders. AMC wraps up Ford’s manufacturing closure… and, conversely, reports on the unexpected return of the Tickford name.
Everywhere you turned at Bathurst this year there were pointers to the past and things that caught the eye of Great Race history buffs.
Our correspondent always wished he could have been a HDT mechanic… except he was born after the legendary squad folded. Yet, as an extra for the Brock mini-series, he got to "live the dream" of being a dealer team mule. Sort of.
This issue, readers show us pics of Starlight Blue GT-HO’s engine that “wouldn’t turn over”; report in from South Africa with expert info about the Fairmont GT; applaud Trevor Ashby and Steve Reed; and generally chime in with interesting tidbits.
Racing legend Fred Gibson made his Bathurst debut in a Mini and recalls finishing runner-up in the 1966 classic. Meantime, Gover, yes everyone just calls him ‘Gover’, remembers his favourite Fords and Ford Australia personnel.
Big Three in ’66
Fifty years ago, at the dawn of the muscle car era, change swept through most aspects of Australian life. Likewise, the previously conservative Big Three showed signs of gearing up for a new era of performance motoring.
Racing in ‘66
Motor racing was changing rapidly in 1966 with a series of firsts and lasts – and unprecedented success for those from the antipodes. AMC presents six ‘clickety-clicks’ from season ’66.
It’s 50 years since Bob Holden’s career-defining win in the Bathurst classic – and well over 60 since he started competing. AMC paid the still active race driver a visit to discuss his remarkable racing life.
Mini Cooper S
The long list of cars built in Australia includes the 1966 Bathurst-winning Morris Cooper S model. The Aussie-produced Cooper S – which was far more than a local assembly job – was made within a well-hit cover drive of the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Just when you thought all of the Group C Torana racecars were either lost forever or already found, another one has emerged – Warren Cullen’s rare four-door A9X from 1977.
Aaron Noonan updates us on the many things that have come across his desk in motor racing history-land. Meantime, the XB GT model gets our ‘nuts and bolts’ R-Rated treatment.
It’s 25 years since the seeds of touring car revolution were sown that would eventually see Group A exotica replaced with a formula for V8 Aussie sedans – a category that has dominated the landscape to this day.
Last issue we published pics from former Ford Australia employees, Max Kenworthy and the late Geoff Sharpe. We had more images than we could possibly print, so we’re going around again!
Wanneroo Park (aka Barbagallo Raceway) has been WA’s home of circuit racing for the best part of five decades and counting. According to one of its founding fathers, it’s a minor miracle it got built in the first place.
Out of Action
Overlooked, overcooked and ‘over-chooked’ – barely surviving classics from our motoring past.
Our twin focuses this issue on Bob Holden and the 50th anniversary of the Mini Cooper S’s Gallaher 500 triumph just beg the question: what became of the 1966 race’s winning chassis? And the eight Minis that finished behind it? One of the chassis that finished first through ninth must have survived, surely. Help us fill in the gaps.