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Elfin MR9


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#1 SJ Lambert

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 09:38

It appeared late in the peace and took a bit of taming, but had F5000 not been going through 1000 cuts in Oz (and everywhere else really) at the time, did this car have the potential to take on/beat all comers?


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Edited by SJ Lambert, 05 February 2011 - 02:32.


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#2 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 22:34

I saw that car have its first race, a shakedown really at the Austin7 club Easter meeting at AIR. From memory it only did one maybe 2 races. My biggest memory is the centre post rear wing wobbling noticeably up the straight. It was really quite different to the cars then racing in appearance.


#3 SJ Lambert

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 10:51

I saw that car have its first race, a shakedown really at the Austin7 club Easter meeting at AIR. From memory it only did one maybe 2 races. My biggest memory is the centre post rear wing wobbling noticeably up the straight. It was really quite different to the cars then racing in appearance.



Is it true that there were no other dedicated ground effect F5000s? Alf Costanzo's McLaren M26 was a converted F1 car wasn't it?

Garrie Cooper drove it to a seventh place finish in the 1980 AGP at Calder after having to reinforce/re-engineer the suspension to tub mounting brackets upon the originals failing during practice.............AJ won in his FW07.....

It got a run in Sandown in 81 and AIR in May 81 - Driver's Championship that year was going to be seven rounds - don't know how many the MR9 made it to.

Edited by SJ Lambert, 26 July 2010 - 10:51.


#4 ellrosso

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 12:34

I can remember it at Calder in 1982 at the Arco Graphite support race for the AGP with Garrie driving (I have a b/w shot of him behind John Wright who ended up winning the race from memory). Terrific looking car, great exhaust note with the flat-plane crank and single exhaust too.

#5 xj13v12

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 09:11


John Bowe reckons it had great potential. The concept of the very high spring rates was unknown territory and the box section front suspension simply broke under the stress. A little more development would have been nice from an historic perspective but the category was long since dead for all intents and purposes. The F5000 based cars with aero sports bodies of course became the 2nd generation Can-am and they really got the ground effects working very well. Good article in the last Motorsport magazine. Drivers loved them which is always a good sign. xj13v12

#6 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 22:07

Did John ever race it? My only [dim] recollections of the car was in Garries hands. How many times was the car raced ? Not very many I am sure.

#7 timbo

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Posted 28 July 2010 - 09:47

Is it true that there were no other dedicated ground effect F5000s? Alf Costanzo's McLaren M26 was a converted F1 car wasn't it?

Garrie Cooper drove it to a seventh place finish in the 1980 AGP at Calder after having to reinforce/re-engineer the suspension to tub mounting brackets upon the originals failing during practice.............AJ won in his FW07.....

It got a run in Sandown in 81 and AIR in May 81 - Driver's Championship that year was going to be seven rounds - don't know how many the MR9 made it to.


Along with Alan Jones in the Williams FW07, the 1980 AGP also included Bruno Giacomelli in the Alfa Romeo 179, although one knowledgable reporter was to call Giacomelli, "Jack O'Malley" the Irish international motor racing driver.

The race also included Didier Pironi driving a local Elfin MR8, who was the best of the F5000 brigade, although finishing 4 laps down.


#8 ellrosso

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Posted 28 July 2010 - 10:00

Lee,yes John did race the car - we have 2 shots on the website (oldracephotos.com) of him at Sandown in 1982. He did have a fright when something let go from memory - pretty sure he spoke about his Sandown outing in a magazine only quite recently (Aust Muscle Car maybe?). I can't recall whether this was his sole outing or whether he had a couple of runs in it. If you type Elfin MR9 into Advanced Search it will bring them up (plus a shot of mine from Birdwood Museum).

#9 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 28 July 2010 - 13:08

Lee,yes John did race the car - we have 2 shots on the website (oldracephotos.com) of him at Sandown in 1982. He did have a fright when something let go from memory - pretty sure he spoke about his Sandown outing in a magazine only quite recently (Aust Muscle Car maybe?). I can't recall whether this was his sole outing or whether he had a couple of runs in it. If you type Elfin MR9 into Advanced Search it will bring them up (plus a shot of mine from Birdwood Museum).

Thanks, I too have a shot at Birdwood mill of the MR9 and Stan Keens Shrike alongside it. It helps being a [comparitive] local

#10 SJ Lambert

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 20:23

I saw that car have its first race, a shakedown really at the Austin7 club Easter meeting at AIR. From memory it only did one maybe 2 races. My biggest memory is the centre post rear wing wobbling noticeably up the straight. It was really quite different to the cars then racing in appearance.


Here's a couple more shots of the beast.

Posted Image

Posted Image



#11 Lola5000

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 22:37

Here's a couple more shots of the beast.

Posted Image

Posted Image

I'm told it would have been a weapon by a guy that was at the time 5 litre driver.The MR8s were also a very good race car.

#12 SJ Lambert

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 23:45

I'm told it would have been a weapon by a guy that was at the time 5 litre driver.The MR8s were also a very good race car.


Probably taken around the same time, at a guess.


Posted Image

Edited by SJ Lambert, 05 February 2011 - 00:03.


#13 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 23:49

Probably taken around the same time, at a guess.


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Almost the complete collection of Elfin at the time, The MR8?, the D series and Garries x army XR ute.

Edited by Lee Nicolle, 05 February 2011 - 05:39.


#14 SJ Lambert

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 00:00

Almost the complete collection of Elfin at the time, The MR9, the D series and Garries x army XR ute.



Posted Image

Is that Garrie walking away from camera left of shot?



#15 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 01:32

Posted Image

Is that Garrie walking away from camera left of shot?

Looks like him, white overalls and all.

#16 cooper997

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 02:18

In issue #9 of Australian magazine, Motor Sport Legends, John Bowe wrote of his Elfin MR9 experiences.

For back issues try - www.motorsportlegends.com.au or usually they have a stand at Phillip Island Historics.

Stephen