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Another myth


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#1 D-Type

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 20:58

I saw this on another forum:

... I found the article in the August 2009 issue of Racecar Engineering. Here is the pertinent part:

One of the enduring stories regarding the M12/13 is that they were built around high mileage road car engines. The tale goes that the engineers discovered that blocks that had spent a long life racking up miles in road cars were wonderfully stress relieved. This gave a longer racing life under the extreme pressures of turbocharging. Reports claimed BMW's M Sport engineers were to be found frequenting Munich scrapyards to source well-used blocks from BMW saloons.
Ulrich Baretsky of Audi Motorsport worked on BMW's Formula 1 engines in the early 1980's and rolls his eyes at the suggestion: 'We kept being asked this' he recalls, 'and it wasn't true. But Paul Rosche became curious, so we tried it.' They built up an engine around an old road car block and tested it on the dyno to see what would happen. 'It didn't even get warm before it blew up,' recalls Baretzky.
Where the story came from, then, is obscured in the mists of time, but it was probably the work of an overzealous PR representative or a journalist letting his imagination run away with a snippet of information picked up during an interview. It was definitely not from spying on BMW engineers cruising Munich scrapyards.


So this has to be put in the bin alongside:

The fixed Tripoli Grand prix
The Mercedes paint scraping
Nuvolari turning his lights off to win the Mille Miglia
Hamilton and Rolt overcoming hangovers to win the 1953 Le Mans
Peter Collins handing the world championship to Fangio

Any more, folks?

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#2 RS2000

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 21:13

Any more, folks?


Jim Clark "leading" or "coming close to winning" the 1966 RAC Rally.

#3 Tim Murray

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 21:20

Collins handing the 1956 championship to Fangio is no myth. At Monza Collins was the only person who could have taken the championship from JMF. To do this he had to win and set fastest lap, but with Fangio out and Moss in trouble with his fuel leak, this was not that improbable - until he gave his car to JMF.

Edited by Tim Murray, 21 July 2011 - 21:23.


#4 Ray Bell

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 21:51

Who killed the Nuvolari Mille Miglia story?

I don't think I've ever seen that debunked...

#5 D-Type

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 22:03

Collins handing the 1956 championship to Fangio is no myth. At Monza Collins was the only person who could have taken the championship from JMF. To do this he had to win and set fastest lap, but with Fangio out and Moss in trouble with his fuel leak, this was not that improbable - until he gave his car to JMF.

Since JMF couldn't set fastest lap or catch Moss, is it really likely that Collins could have done both?

Who killed the Nuvolari Mille Miglia story?

I don't think I've ever seen that debunked...

It was in a thread on the forum a while back. Because Nuvolari had started behind Varzi (I forget how many minutes), so even if Achille had seen him behind he would still have had to make up the deficit.


#6 Tim Murray

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 22:26

Since JMF couldn't set fastest lap or catch Moss, is it really likely that Collins could have done both?

Maybe not , but if Piotti hadn't given Moss the push that got him back to the pits, Collins would very likely have won the race, and if he knew he had to set fastest lap - who knows?

#7 Tim Murray

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 22:47

It was in a thread on the forum a while back.

This one, probably:

1930 Mille Miglia

#8 D-Type

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 09:28

The reason I included Monza 1956 was the myth that says "Collins threw away a certain championship by handing his car over to Fangio" while the reality is that he had a very slim, almost mathematical, chance rather than a "certain" championship.

I think the myth arose because Musso did refuse to hand his car over as he wanted the glory of winning his home GP.

Edited by D-Type, 03 April 2013 - 10:58.


#9 Andrew Kitson

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 09:55

Colin Chapman being the first to bring tobacco sponsorship into Formula 1, Formula Ford cars first racing at Brands Hatch and Emerson Fittipaldi doing the Snetterton Jim Russell school are all myths.

#10 Sharman

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 10:13

Didn't the Nuvolari myth begin with Hans Reusch's novel, if memory serves it was titled "The Racers"?

#11 Eric Dunsdon

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 10:21

did[/b] refuse to hand his car over as he wanted the glory of winning his home GP.

To those of us who were around at the time, this was news and became an accepted part of Grand Prix racing history. When did it become a myth?. :confused:

#12 Bauble

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 11:05

To those of us who were around at the time, this was news and became an accepted part of Grand Prix racing history. When did it become a myth?. :confused:



As Eric says the incident formed part of contemporary race reports, and is not something that cropped up at a later date, as I understand it, and I must stress; I was not there!
Tavoni (?) asked Collins if he would hand his car over to Juan, and Peter instantly agreed. Fangio always spoke warmly of Peter over the incident.
Many years ago, as a schoolboy (me and Tom Jones), I read a book about the Mille Miglia and read of the disconnected brake lights, however, I do not recall it being attributed to any particular driver. I would imagine that is was probably a common practice amongst regular competitors before 'elf and safety' intervened.

Duncan Hamilton certainly wrote of the 'night out' incident in his book 'Touch Wood', so I would believe it, Duncan being a true English Gentleman.

Speculative posts of this nature can cause future generations to be misled. I would urge caution when trying to debunk history.

By the way DT the Le Mans crash really did happen, I can vouch for that!

Edited by Bauble, 22 July 2011 - 11:10.


#13 D-Type

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 12:10

I'll reiterate: I included Monza 1956 on the basis that the myth is that Collins gave up a certain championship. The facts are as people have described here. But I maintain he gave up a remote chance rather than a certainty.

I know the Le Mans 1953 story is in Touch Wood. But Tony Rolt, and his family, have denied that things happened the way that Duncan Hamilton tells it.

#14 Sharman

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 12:15

I don't think it was disconnected brake lights which were in question. It was driving without any lights at all so that the lead driver was not aware that his pursuer was closing up.

Apropos absolutely bloody nothing at all, John Mangoletsi nearly had me into a bus as he had a switch on his TVR which cut out the brake lights and I, in my innocence, in my TVR thought if he doesn't need to brake neither do I.

#15 bradbury west

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 12:35

and read of the disconnected brake lights, however, I do not recall it being attributed to any particular driver.


It is some time since I read it, but ISTR that SCM mentions, in one of his books, a special switch for the brake lights, along with his trick, especially in sports racing cars, of deliberately making the car twitch about on the approach into the first corner, leading at the time, to make the others think the track was greasy and ease off. There was also the case of rally drivers having rear-lights-off-switches for special stages.
Roger Lund

#16 bradbury west

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 12:39

Apropos absolutely bloody nothing at all, John Mangoletsi


O/T a bit, but did Mangoletsi or anyone else develop further the crossover inlet manifold with twin SUs idea which Mangoletsi devised? ISTR it working very well on a journo's own A35 when tested in period. We are talking 1960/61-ish.
Roger Lund

#17 f1steveuk

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 13:06

Going back to the original post, it was Paul Rosche himself who told me the story about the early BMW F1 turbo engines, while making a documentry about F1 engine development, and added a bit about the technicians all going outside to pee on the already rusting blocks.

I recently heard the story repeated by Chris Barry in his series on Discovery Channel, not that any of that makes it true!

#18 Nev

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 13:20

I know the Le Mans 1953 story is in Touch Wood. But Tony Rolt, and his family, have denied that things happened the way that Duncan Hamilton tells it.


Is this documented or is it just heresay? Do you know where and when Tony Rolt and/or his family denied Hamilton's account?

Edited by Nev, 22 July 2011 - 13:21.


#19 cheapracer

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 13:30

It is some time since I read it, but ISTR that SCM mentions, in one of his books, a special switch for the brake lights, There was also the case of rally drivers having rear-lights-off-switches for special stages.
Roger Lund


I know a top Touring car team that runs an adjustable delay switch for the brake lights - slight delay means the guy behind brakes way too late if he's going for the pass.

Rally cars used to be very common for club guys to switch off the rear lights for small alternators to drive 4 Super Oscars was just common sense.

Going back to the original post, it was Paul Rosche himself who told me the story about the early BMW F1 turbo engines, while making a documentry about F1 engine development, and added a bit about the technicians all going outside to pee on the already rusting blocks.

I recently heard the story repeated by Chris Barry in his series on Discovery Channel, not that any of that makes it true!


Top racing teams were using "seasoned" blocks a long time before BMW came along and the OP's story about the "old motor blowing up immediately" actually smells like the myth to me or does someone actually believe they spent say a hundred grand just to "see what would happen".....


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#20 D-Type

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 13:55

Is this documented or is it just heresay? Do you know where and when Tony Rolt and/or his family denied Hamilton's account?


Here See posts 7 & 23


Edit: Link fixed (hopefully)

Edited by D-Type, 22 July 2011 - 19:09.


#21 john winfield

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 14:12

I can't get D Type's link to work but I seem to recall letters in Motor Sport a few years back with then editor Andrew Frankel (I might be wrong) apologising to a member of the Rolt family for taking the Hamilton story on face value. In the end everyone seemed agreed that the two drivers hadn't spent the previous night drinking so heavily that they took to the track drunk the next day.
But D Type, I still believe in the Peter Collins story! I've never read about a myth that Peter lost a 'certain' championship, just that he gave up any chance he had by handing over his car. Your opening post doesn't use the word certain and I don't think cold analysis of Peter's chances of winning the title diminish his actions at Monza that day. But, like Bauble, I can't really say because I wasn't there. Unlike Bauble, I wasn't even born.

Edited by john winfield, 22 July 2011 - 14:19.


#22 Andrew Kitson

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 14:46

In the 1974 Avon Tour..the one dominated by Roger Clark & Gerry Marshall in works Escorts, Roger switched his lights off now and then in the Snetterton night races and followed Gerry around...trying to confuse him. Great characters. OT but I recall seeing the DVD of Roger's victory speech from that event..'I'd like to thank the Marshal's...not the silly bugger who came 2nd'!

#23 Kpy

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 15:24

Here


Dud link

#24 David McKinney

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 15:43

Formula Ford cars first racing at Brands Hatch [a] myth.

The first FF Festival was certainly at Snetterton, in spite of what a lot of people think
But surely the first official FF race was at Brands?



#25 Kpy

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 16:24

But surely the first official FF race was at Brands?


Indeed - 2nd July 1967, unless anyone has an earlier date.


#26 Bloggsworth

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 16:32

Indeed - 2nd July 1967, unless anyone has an earlier date.


I was there. As FF was a John Webb project IIRC, I'd be surprised if it happened anywhere else.

Edited by Bloggsworth, 22 July 2011 - 16:32.


#27 Andrew Kitson

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 16:45

The first FF race solely for those cars did indeed take place at Brands...but it was not the first time FF cars raced! Snetterton on June 11th 1967 at a BRSCC meeting, JRRDS entered 9 of their brand new Lotus 51s in a single seater race for school pupils, against F3 cars and other libre entries. Among the FF drivers were Claude Bourgoignie and Mo Harness.

Snetterton is the real home of FF, not that circuit south of the river! With Lotus, Merlyn, Scholar engines, Jim Russell school, then later on Van Diemen, Lola, Titan and Royale all being in East Anglia during the FF heydays...the local track Snetterton was the obviouis place to start the Festival. Bring it back!

#28 D-Type

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 19:23

Sorry, I've been having trouble with links - I was posting at work and a firewall got in the way

Anyway here we are:

See Tony Rolt post 23 for why I distrust the Touch Wood story

Peter Collins and WDC 1956 for a full discussion on this one. If you don't want to plough through that lot, it's summarised in Post 24 of the Peter Collins thread.

Edited by D-Type, 22 July 2011 - 19:30.


#29 ensign14

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 19:33

Basically Fangio took over Collins' car so that Ferrari could win the Italian GP rather than Maserati. Collins was some way back from Moss, Fangio got quite a bit closer...remember the Ferrari-Maserati battle was so intense that Castellotti died trying to recapture an otherwise meaningless lap record for the Prancing Horse.

#30 Tim Murray

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Posted 23 July 2011 - 05:21

Interesting that in Cabianca's analysis, linked to by Duncan above, he gives the championship to Collins if Collins had won at Monza but not set fastest lap, with Fangio failing to score, and hence both of them being tied on 30 points. On checking I think he's probably right. In which case, if everything else had happened as it did, the championship would have hung on whether or not Piotti had had the presence of mind to give Moss the push.

I always thought that the 'Monza myth' was that, in giving up his car to Fangio, Collins stopped Moss winning the title, which is of course nonsense.

#31 Bauble

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Posted 23 July 2011 - 06:45

I do not see that there is a contradiction in the two versions of the 'Le Mans' incident; Tony Rolt dismissed tales of a drunken night out, while Hamilton talks of a 'night imbibing' and generally feeling sorry for themselves. The Touch Wood version does not suggest any form of excess. I can understand that Tony (and his family) would be distressed to be pictured as 'drunk' which would be totally out of character for him.

It was probably just a quiet night out, which has been blown up over the years, by certain members of the media!!

Either way it was a famous victory by two of the finest gentlemen drivers of the era.

God Bless them both.

bauble.

#32 GMACKIE

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Posted 23 July 2011 - 07:19

And God Bless you as well, bauble!

There's too much of this "Don't let the truth get in the way of a good story" rubbish. Should this be in 'Blood pressure'? :confused:

#33 RStock

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Posted 23 July 2011 - 15:29

I saw this on another forum:


So this has to be put in the bin alongside:

The fixed Tripoli Grand prix
The Mercedes paint scraping
Nuvolari turning his lights off to win the Mille Miglia
Hamilton and Rolt overcoming hangovers to win the 1953 Le Mans
Peter Collins handing the world championship to Fangio

Any more, folks?



Ferrari removing the disc brakes from Collins road car and installing them on Hawthorn's GP car. Never happened, wouldn't have worked anyway.

#34 David McKinney

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 08:10

Stuart Graham is the only person to have won the TT on two wheels and four

#35 fuzzi

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 08:19

There was Freddie Dixon. :kiss:

(He did on three and four wheels)

#36 Graham Gauld

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 11:15

Ferrari removing the disc brakes from Collins road car and installing them on Hawthorn's GP car. Never happened, wouldn't have worked anyway.



Absolutely correct. Dunlop sent a technician out to Modena to fit proper disc brakes to the Hawthorn car and here it is on its first time out at Monza. Note the drums on the other Dinos.


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#37 David McKinney

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 11:54

There was Freddie Dixon. :kiss:

(He did on three and four wheels)

Actually, he did it on two wheels as well

Charlie Dodson was the other 2/4-wheel TT winner


#38 D-Type

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 12:28

Stuart Graham is the only person to have won the TT on two wheels and four



There was Freddie Dixon. :kiss:

(He did on three and four wheels)



Actually, he did it on two wheels as well

Charlie Dodson was the other 2/4-wheel TT winner


Is the incorrect version sufficiently well established and widely believed to rank as a "myth"?


#39 Tim Murray

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 14:07

I'd say so. I've heard and read it many times, including in circuit commentaries and the promotional material for some of the Goodwood meetings. (We drew Doug's attention to this in one of the threads - he sorted it and so far they don't seem to have repeated the error.) However, maybe the message has now got across. At Silverstone this weekend, while the commentators were making much of Stuart Graham being the winner of a two-wheel TT, a four-wheel TT and now a Historic RAC TT, they appeared careful not to say that he was the only person etc etc.

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#40 David McKinney

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 16:18

....but the Silverstone Classic press material did make just that claim

#41 Alan Cox

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 16:52

At a recent meeting I did hear the commentator say that Stuart was the only post-war winner of TTs on 2 and 4 wheels, which came as a pleasant surprise.

#42 kayemod

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Posted 30 October 2013 - 13:05

I saw this on another forum:

So this has to be put in the bin alongside:

The fixed Tripoli Grand prix
The Mercedes paint scraping
Nuvolari turning his lights off to win the Mille Miglia
Hamilton and Rolt overcoming hangovers to win the 1953 Le Mans
Peter Collins handing the world championship to Fangio

Any more, folks?

 

That one is never going to die, I've just received this story from Reuters about the potential sale of the Nürburgring.

 

http://uk.reuters.co...Name=sportsNews

 

For anyone not interested in reading the whole thing, the paint-scraping part is pasted below.

 

"German carmakers in particular have long had an affinity with the track. Daimler traces its "Silver Arrow" heritage back to the 1934 Eifel Race around the Nordschleife, or north loop, which it won after the Mercedes team famously scraped the car's white paintwork off the metal body to shave weight".



#43 RVM

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Posted 30 October 2013 - 17:56

That one is never going to die, I've just received this story from Reuters about the potential sale of the Nürburgring.

 

http://uk.reuters.co...Name=sportsNews

 

For anyone not interested in reading the whole thing, the paint-scraping part is pasted below.

 

"German carmakers in particular have long had an affinity with the track. Daimler traces its "Silver Arrow" heritage back to the 1934 Eifel Race around the Nordschleife, or north loop, which it won after the Mercedes team famously scraped the car's white paintwork off the metal body to shave weight".

 

"For the great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie -- deliberate, contrived, and dishonest -- but the myth -- persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the clichés of our forebears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought."

John F. Kennedy, Yale commencement speech, 11 June 1963



#44 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 30 October 2013 - 21:48

I know a top Touring car team that runs an adjustable delay switch for the brake lights - slight delay means the guy behind brakes way too late if he's going for the pass.

Rally cars used to be very common for club guys to switch off the rear lights for small alternators to drive 4 Super Oscars was just common sense.


Top racing teams were using "seasoned" blocks a long time before BMW came along and the OP's story about the "old motor blowing up immediately" actually smells like the myth to me or does someone actually believe they spent say a hundred grand just to "see what would happen".....

While I have no idea of BMW I was of the understanding too they used road car blocks.
As for seasoning for ever race cast iron blocks have been seasoned. Leaving a semi machined block to weather for 6 months or so is well known.

#45 William Hunt

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 15:50

 

Hamilton and Rolt overcoming hangovers to win the 1953 Le Mans
 

 

I had never head about this one!


Edited by William Hunt, 14 November 2013 - 15:50.


#46 D-Type

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 16:12

The original version of the tale is in Duncan Hamilton's very readable and in places highly amusing autobiography Touch Wood

 

But this particular tale has been, shall we say, somewhat exaggerated for effect. Tony Rolt (and later his family) have gone on record to say that it didn't happen as Duncan Hamilton relates. 



#47 Jim Thurman

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 17:07


So this has to be put in the bin alongside:

Any more, folks?

 

Nearly anything attributed to Ed Elisian.

 

There are so many in U.S. racing that they fall into categories of cliches (thank you U.S. press):

 

"It was his first race"

"He was planning on retiring after the race"

"Death Curve!"

"He had just signed a deal to..." 1. drive in the Indianapolis 500, 2. for a noted car owner 3. become President of the U.S.A.

Cars involved in fatal accidents being cut up and buried, burned, shot into space. 

 

Plus, worst of all, a level of ghoulishness where drivers were dismembered (or worse) in seemingly every accident.  No matter how bad the reality was, there's someone who knows someone who knows it was far worse :rolleyes:



#48 nmansellfan

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 17:34

One more - Henri Toivonen setting a laptime at the Estoril race circuit in his Lancia Delta S4 during a stage of the 1986 Portuguese rally that would have put him 6th on the grid for that years GP.  The rally didn't even visit the circuit that year...

 

Though I did read somewhere once that he did test at the circuit a few weeks before the rally and set a time that was somewhere near the slowest GP car's laptimes, so maybe there is a tiny bit of truth to the rumour...?



#49 D-Type

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 19:55

I think this may originate from the 1985 Portuguese GP being run in wet conditions ....