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1980s Calder sports car crash?


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#1 cheapracer

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 19:53

I vividly remember a massive crash involving a V8 Can Am'ish style Sports Car at Calder maybe early 80's. The race was broadcast on ABC TV and the guy was flat out up the back straight (old short circuit) and went to brake for the 90degree right hander and found himself with a jammed throttle - He went off track into the dirt to the right to miss a car in front of him and had nothing but locked front brakes and full power still to the rears. He crossed the track at 90 degrees after the right hander and hit the armco on the far side below the spectators banking. The deformation of the armco was incredible and it absorbed most of the energy and if memory serve me correct, he limped away after some time in the car. There was also a very pissed off photographer in the foreground, camera not ready, who realised what he had missed :lol:

Anyone?

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#2 Ray Bell

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 19:59

Alan Newton...

He was driving the Elfin MS7 that Garrie Cooper raced himself for a while, it was still (broadly at least...) in Ansett colours.

#3 cheapracer

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 20:53

Alan Newton...

He was driving the Elfin MS7 that Garrie Cooper raced himself for a while, it was still (broadly at least...) in Ansett colours.


Thank you Ray, are you on a late night (like me) or do you get up that early?

#4 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 21:25

From my vague recollections that was an accident that probably should not have happened as I think the driver panicked causing the accident.
I know it was big. I too saw it on TV

There was another that I remember too about the same period. John Bowe in a F2? [Lucky Nuts] went off the trac, ran down a infield official and then continued back to the track and continued racing. That was Calder too.
That is when Bob was running really good interesting meetings there inc the AGP meetings. All on the little 1 mile track. It is a pity that place [and AIR] are still not running

Edited by Lee Nicolle, 02 March 2011 - 21:27.


#5 Bondy

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 21:47

From my vague recollections that was an accident that probably should not have happened as I think the driver panicked causing the accident.
I know it was big. I too saw it on TV

There was another that I remember too about the same period. John Bowe in a F2? [Lucky Nuts] went off the trac, ran down a infield official and then continued back to the track and continued racing. That was Calder too.
That is when Bob was running really good interesting meetings there inc the AGP meetings. All on the little 1 mile track. It is a pity that place [and AIR] are still not running


Bowe in a Ralt RT4 hit a Photographer (Dale Rodgers iirc), that was August 81.. I think he was Black Flagged..

#6 Ray Bell

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 22:21

Not so early morning, cheapy...

But I play the late night game too. Anyway, I agree with Lee, it's quite likely Newton could have avoided this crash altogether, but he panicked.

As for the photographer, and I think it was Dale Rodgers, I recall well standing next to Peter Larner when that happened. He was aghast that Bowe would simply drive on and not stop to tend to the bloke he'd hit. I stated that I would have kept going... Peter said to me, "You're a harder man than I am, Ray!"

My reasoning was that before I'd got unstrapped and out of the car, there'd be officials in attendance, and that they'd know better than me how to cope and I might even get in the way.

I don't recall that Bowe was blackflagged, he may have been, but I don't really think so.

#7 Powloo

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 03:36

Hello everyone,

I was there at Calder (as a youngish teenager!) that day and witnessed Alan Newton hitting the barriers in the MS7. From memory, it seemed to slip off the right side of the track at the end of the back straight and then proceeded to launch itself into the air and straight into the barriers. The Elfin seemed to literally explode as it hit the armco.....bodywork and dirt went everywhere! We all thought that the Elfin would be a twisted ball of metal with Alan in it but once the dust had settled, the car looked to be relatively intact and thankfully, Alan was moving around. It did make a mess of the armco though..... I too remember that Alan was in the car for quite a while after the accident. I think he got away with a fractured ankle.

I went through my slides and managed to find one of the aftermath....

Posted Image


Cheers

Paul

#8 Piquet959

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 04:20

I to was there and gasped when it happened. My understanding is that the throttle jammed open on the back straight. Alan went for brakes and nothing happened. The car went off to the infield onto the grass and then was launched into the air by the spoon drain on the infield. Up in the air it cleared the track in the air and one bounce before it hit the Armco.

The clerk of the course was Henk Duncan. Who promptly went into a panic attack thinking that there may have been a fatality.

The fortunate thing is that if the car had hit the ground a couple of yards earlier there is a chance that it may have cleared the Armco on the bounce and gone almost full noise into the crowd. Now that is not worth thinking about.

Cheers
Peter Sneddon

#9 king_crud

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 10:02

That is when Bob was running really good interesting meetings there inc the AGP meetings. All on the little 1 mile track. It is a pity that place [and AIR] are still not running


When did Calder close? The last I remember of it was the thunderdome doing racing in the mid-late 90s with Auscar/Nascar

#10 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 10:55

I think nominally it is still going with the road circuit. I believe Sprints and some drags etc are held there. I do stand to be corrected. The Dome is desperatly in need of resurfacing and from what I believe they cannot get anyone to do it.Too steep.
But as I said a couple of years ago it is sad to see it not being used as they used too when they used to have lots of good events there.

#11 Ray Bell

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 11:37

I think Bob has handed the running over to Rodney... or maybe Rodney has simply taken it over...

And I don't think Rodney's as interested as Bob was.

Whichever way it goes, nobody but them will be making any decisions or suggestions about what should happen. And by the way, is the dirt still being piled up everywhere on the site?

#12 Librules

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 18:51

I think Bob still has control of Calder which recently regained a CAMS licence to allow club level motorsport (sprint meetings etc). The common thought is that at some point in the future it will be sold off for subdivision and whichever generation of Jane has control at that time will pocket a few dollars. Houses are very close to the track now in any case. Despite it's progressive demise, at least we have some great memories from racing there, just as with Oran Park, Amaroo etc.

#13 Ray Bell

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 21:41

Who's going to build a house on those piles of dirt?

Bob doesn't need any CAMS licence to run events, he has the AASA licensing system. But if he's sought one it means something must be happening.

#14 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 22:41

I am fairly sure that Bob has been sacked from running anything these days in the businesses with his Tax battle. Which is sad.Though I feel that Bill Jane has a hand in this too.
Rodney is the one that has negotiated to get AIR up and running again, at least for drags and I have heard it will happen at Calder too. Though the NIMBYS may complain.
From what I am told the road circuit and drag strip are still in ok condition. The Dome is probably had it with subsidence and the problems resurfacing I mentioned. Just not viable, I doubt it ever was really. Though a brave attempt to give us some US culture!! And it was 25 years ago!!
Again I think the Drag strip may become a 1000ft because of run off issues.
Surprisingly I have never been there, never even driven by.
But I have contact with a couple of long time Victorian racers who give me a bit of gossip

#15 Librules

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 02:46

I'm not wishing to dispute anything written above but if Rodney is running Calder I'm bemused that he'd allow this ad on the track's website given his current stand-off with Bob..........

http://www.calderpar...line-tyres.aspx

#16 Librules

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 02:51

and...................

http://cams.com.au/e...AY_LICENCE.aspx

#17 Catalina Park

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 06:41

The Alan Newton crash clip is on youtube, it is a couple of seconds in.

#18 xj13v12

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 07:23

The Alan Newton crash clip is on youtube, it is a couple of seconds in.


I have a still shot of the moment of impact. It looks like the car has been atomised. Alan got a broken ankle. Interesting how many people say they were on the hill watching. There is a nice shot of that too, about 53 people.
The throttle jammed so he went infield rather than crash into other cars. The problem was the undulations (at 160 mph) meant he couldn't control anything, not even hang onto the sterring wheel. There is a clear shot of that too, arms flailing around. He couldn't de-clutch (not that that would have made any difference at that point) nor could he brake as his feet were just thrashing around in there. He hit right at the base of a telegraph pole which he snapped off like a carrot and the car finished facing the opposite direction. Thanks for posting.

#19 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 08:42

and...................

http://cams.com.au/e...AY_LICENCE.aspx

Interesting, selling a few tyres from Calder is not going to dent the Bob Jane Corporation, probably to help pay for Bobbys motorsport.
But Calder liscence to Bob is a turn up, maybe the tax [and divorce settlements] have been settled.
It seemed that Bob had been pushed out of his corporation, effectivly for everyones good. Financially at least.

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#20 275 GTB-4

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 07:43

The Alan Newton crash clip is on youtube, it is a couple of seconds in.


Saw it today Mike...still being repaired! :rotfl:

Posted Image

#21 Librules

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 08:17

Saw it today Mike...still being repaired! :rotfl:

Posted Image


.....but not from the Newton crash. It's had a few pilots since then, the most recent being Bob Tweedie from memory.

#22 Catalina Park

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 08:18

They seem to be taking their time.

#23 Librules

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 08:32

It ran alright at Eastern Creek last year ....................... http://racing.natsof...160.96T/View?20

#24 gtsmunro

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 10:37

The Alan Newton crash clip is on youtube, it is a couple of seconds in.

That was a decent hit. Lucky to come away with a broken ankle.


#25 Jimisgod

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 16:53

The throttle jammed so he went infield rather than crash into other cars. The problem was the undulations (at 160 mph) meant he couldn't control anything, not even hang onto the sterring wheel. There is a clear shot of that too, arms flailing around. He couldn't de-clutch (not that that would have made any difference at that point) nor could he brake as his feet were just thrashing around in there. He hit right at the base of a telegraph pole which he snapped off like a carrot and the car finished facing the opposite direction. Thanks for posting.


He was airborne for more than half the trip, like that old Newman quote I just cannibalized goes... brakes don't work when you're moving like that. He was a good 4 metres in the air at one stage.

What saved him was that the car landed and started to slide sideways, so it wasn't a dead head on hit, but 30 or 45%.




#26 timbo

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 19:34

Bob Tweedie is currently running the Elfin MS7, and had it running at the June HSRCA Eastern Creek meeting, but had a first lap altercation in one race resulting in a fair bit of damage.
This may explain the current state of the car.
Hopefully it will be back for the November HSRCA Tasman Revival meeting at Eastern Creek (Sydney Motorsport Park).

#27 Bondy

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 00:58

Bob Tweedie is currently running the Elfin MS7, and had it running at the June HSRCA Eastern Creek meeting, but had a first lap altercation in one race resulting in a fair bit of damage.
This may explain the current state of the car.
Hopefully it will be back for the November HSRCA Tasman Revival meeting at Eastern Creek (Sydney Motorsport Park).


Footage of the June incident here http://www.youtube.c...feature=related

#28 275 GTB-4

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 01:34

Footage of the June incident here http://www.youtube.c...feature=related


Ouch! all over in a flash...looks like it would have been a big hit :well: Thanks for footage Bondy...

[PS can't get over the very much improved quality of onboard video "these days" :-) ]