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Return of the Connew... story!


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#51 Peter Morley

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Posted 07 July 2004 - 14:22

Have you seen this, quite a nice photo.
If you had enough of them you could pay for the restoration..................

http://cgi.ebay.com/...item=6105806934

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#52 Twin Window

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Posted 07 July 2004 - 16:12

I was having a trawl through my trannies today, and I found a pic I'd completely forgotten I'd taken...

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It may well be crap, but it doubles the number of pics I took of the Connew!! :clap: (Even though I didn't succeed in getting the whole car in the shot either time... :mad: )

This was at the Victory Race, Brands Hatch, October 1972.

Twinny

#53 Barry Boor

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Posted 07 July 2004 - 16:33

This is WONDERFUL, Twinny! There are so few decent shots of Purls in the car AND.... you have Daddy D there too.
Daddy D was Roger Doran's father, (Roger being our Chief Mechanic) and he was a brilliant welder. I am not absolutely sure but I suspect that sadly, he is no longer with us....

As for the Ebay item, I wonder how much it will go for.

#54 Gary C

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Posted 07 July 2004 - 16:58

I reckon the Ebay pic will go for about a fiver (that's five POUNDS!!)

#55 David Birchall

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Posted 07 July 2004 - 18:57

I finally got around to reading Barry's great story last night-has F1 changed or what?!!?
The story put me in mind of Alf Francis book "Racing Mechanic", one of my favourite reads. Catalina Park just may have the right idea in rebuilding it with a Chevy V8-if the car gets seen running by enough people maybe a correct engine would materialise. Nice to think so anyway. Congratulations Barry, you did what a lot of us simply fantasised about. (No, I can't spell).
David B

#56 Mischa Bijenhof

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Posted 12 July 2004 - 18:52

I found this one on www.asag.sk

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#57 Twin Window

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Posted 12 July 2004 - 21:28

That's a nice shot, Mischa! And is it me, or do VW Caravanettes get into the background of an awful lot of shots fom the '70s?!

Meanwhile, I've found some stuff in Autosprint which I'll scan and get on here asap...

Twinny

#58 Barry Boor

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 06:27

That item on Ebay went for the minimum bid of 9 euros.

How do I know.....? :blush: :blush: :blush:

#59 Twin Window

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 12:59

Nice one Barry! (or should that be Bruce?!  ;) )

I expect you've seen them before, but I found these stories in Autosprint...

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If you look closely at the bottom pic, the article is credited to a certain 'Dong Nye'. :lol:

Could he be a relative of Doug's from Hong Kong? Or maybe it's just a nickame? Or did Doug use an alias in the 70s, and secretly worked as a porn star in Italy...

Twinny :wave:

BTW my badge arrived safe and sound! Cheers! :up:

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#60 Racer.Demon

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 13:19

Wow, as usual that Autosprint article, with all its detail pictures, is magnificent.

They don't magazines like that anymore, do they? :( :rolleyes:

#61 RTH

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 14:05

Originally posted by Racer.Demon
Wow, as usual that Autosprint article, with all its detail pictures, is magnificent.

They don't magazines like that anymore, do they? :( :rolleyes:


They used to of course, - it used to be called Autosport in the UK

- now of course this publication is nothing even remotely like it - these days they prefer to print double colour spreads of mainly blue sky - how wonderfully informative that is , meanwhile all the national & club racing news is compressed in to a tiny corner with minimal number of photos the size of postage stamps .

Incidently that is a photo of the Kitchener Rolls Royce F5000 car which I think was stillborn, - anyone got more on that ?

#62 Twin Window

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 15:21

Hi Richard

As far as I remember, the Kitchmac raced with reasonable success in 1972, albeit with a Chev engine as opposed to the RR. Or was it the engine you were refering to?!

Gordon Spice was the main driver, but Roger Williamson drove it in the last round of '72 at Brands and in the F1/5000 Victory Race the following day.

Needless to say, I can't find my pic of it when I need it...!

Twinny

#63 Barry Boor

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 19:13

A little background is required, regarding the Autosprint article. Unless I am very much mistaken (sorry Murray) I suspect that it is more or less a translation of the article that Doug wrote following a visit to the Chadwell Heath workshop one morning. (Hence the Dong Yen business.)

The article appeared in a Japanese magazine called Autosport with many if not all of the pictures Twinny's article shows.

Just to prove the point, here is the front cover of that magazine...

Posted Image

You are looking at Peter (left) Roger Doran (right) and Ron Olive (back - who left the team shortly after) Me? I was at the fippin' dentists! :(

#64 MCS

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 19:20

Originally posted by Twin Window
Hi Richard

As far as I remember, the Kitchmac raced with reasonable success in 1972, albeit with a Chev engine as opposed to the RR. Or was it the engine you were refering to?!

Gordon Spice was the main driver, but Roger Williamson drove it in the last round of '72 at Brands and in the F1/5000 Victory Race the following day.

Needless to say, I can't find my pic of it when I need it...!

Twinny


Williamson also drove it in the penultimate F5000 round at Oulton Park - an attempt by Tom Wheatcroft to get Roger the Tarmac Championship.

He collided with John Cannon on the last lap on the approach to Lodge... Cannon's mistake IMHO.

MCS

#65 RTH

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 19:47

Barry : Now thats a really nice photo of the car ......... so when are we going to see it looking like that again..........have you got some shots of what it looks like right now ?

#66 Barry Boor

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 21:35

Yes I have, but respecting Peter's wishes, I am not in a position to make them public at the moment.

Sorry.....

#67 Macca

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 10:10

http://www.thegaffer.../autos/1243.php

More dodgy dudes - or the same ones in nice matching anoraks? There's definitely a big overlap with the Fashion Nightmares thread - that yellow tanktop :down:



Paul M

#68 Twin Window

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 10:52

That's a great pic you've found, Paul!! :clap:

It took a while to access, so I've copied it here...

http://hometown.aol..../ConnewTeam.bmp

So, Barry, some explanations please! Who's who, for starters? :)

Found in Autosprint 1982!

Posted Image

Twinny

#69 ian senior

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 10:55

Originally posted by Twin Window
Hi Richard

As far as I remember, the Kitchmac raced with reasonable success in 1972, albeit with a Chev engine as opposed to the RR. Or was it the engine you were refering to?!

Gordon Spice was the main driver, but Roger Williamson drove it in the last round of '72 at Brands and in the F1/5000 Victory Race the following day.

Needless to say, I can't find my pic of it when I need it...!

Twinny


I saw the Kitchmac at Rufforth in August 1972. It was driven by none other than Roberta Cowell, wearing a red open face helmet with black spots. Very fetching. She wandered around near the back of the field in the Libre race (which was the usual Tony Dean show) and muffed a few gear changes. As for the Rolls Royce engine, I recall seieng that picture (or one very like it ) in Motoring News, and I think that was a far as it got. Pity.

#70 RTH

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 11:51

Ian : that's exactly my memory too I believe it was a shadow engine reduced in capacity but after the announcement and the distinctive valve covers , I never heard that the car was ever completed or ran -I wonder if RR vetoed it as they did with John Dodd's car and just about anything else using the RR brand - I believe they even try to legally stop the american pop band using the name Rose Royce in the late 70's

The Connew never looked better than in plain red, I hope some day soon it will look like that again.

#71 ian senior

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 11:56

Wasn't there a sports-racer in the 60s that used a R-R engine? I seem to recall something called the Marina (no, not the Morris!) driven by Jim Blumer, and I saw pictures of it in an old magazine from ( I think) 1963.

#72 RTH

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 11:59

That rings a bell with me too - but I can't visualise it .

#73 ensign14

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 12:05

There's a pic on a Goodwood thread - search for Marina.

#74 Twin Window

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 12:54

I guess this must be at the Rothmans 50,000...

Posted Image
(Source: Motor Racing Year 1973/Hutton)

Twinny :up:

#75 GIGLEUX

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 13:34

Three views of the PC1 published in 1972 by french mag. Sport Auto

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#76 GIGLEUX

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 14:05

And this one

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(Cl.Attualfoto)

#77 Twin Window

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 14:18

Great pics, Jean-Maurice! :clap:

Twinny

#78 Barry Boor

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 16:22

Taking Twinny's coloured picture first....

Standing behind the car is Chief Mechanic Roger Doran; sitting to Roger's right as we look is George Lake who drove the transporter (joke!) it was a Sapal Chalets lorry that we fitted out to take the car etc. George became a mechanic in 1973 after I had moved on. The other 2 are called Pinky & Perky; well, at least, that's what Peter always called them. They were 2 young enthusiasts who used to pop round the workshop in the evenings and were given jobs like polishing wheel rims etc etc etc. Peter is somewhat embarrassed that he cannot recall their real names - they were always just Pinky & Perky. I can't help there because they came along just about the time I left.

The middle shot of Gigleux's 3 is in the Brands pits during Grand Prix weekend. That's yours truly sitting far right adjusting the spring seats.

Gigleux's 3rd picture is new to me, as is that front view from Autosprint. I wonder where that was taken as the car is in Capricorn colours but has no number. That probably makes it the Nurburgring.

Thank you once again to everyone who is supplying these rare items.

#79 Roger Clark

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Posted 14 July 2004 - 22:58

This picture, shows the Connew in practice for the Rothman's 50,000. It didn't make the race, for reasons that may be obvious.

The picture is copyright Ted Walker and reproduced with permission.

Posted Image

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#80 Barry Boor

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Posted 15 July 2004 - 06:21

Thanks for the post, Roger, and to Ted for permission to show it.

This picture should be titled "The Beginning of the End." The smoke indicates the failing of the engine, which in turn led to the exit of Monsieur Migault

#81 Roger Clark

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 10:17

This is another of Ted Walker's picture, again showing Migault at the Rothman's race.

Posted Image

#82 Twin Window

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 10:22

Nice pic!

Is it me, or are the rear wheels at a strange angle of lean...?! :eek:

Twinny

#83 Roger Clark

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 11:41

Originally posted by Twin Window


Is it me, or are the rear wheels at a strange angle of lean...?! :eek:

I thought the same; and the front suspension seems to indicate a large amount of roll.

#84 Barry Boor

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 14:57

I have queried the suspension angles with Mr. Connew.

(Don't ask me, I only made the bodywork!!!!) :lol:

I await his comments with interest.

#85 David Beard

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 15:27

Originally posted by Barry Boor
I have queried the suspension angles with Mr. Connew.


Does he still have the drawings?
Was there lots of debate about geometry, roll centres and stuff, or (dare I say it) is it just like a Surtees of the period?

#86 Barry Boor

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 18:59

I'm fairly sure he still has all the drawings.

Debate??? Who would he have debated it with? None of the rest of us would have had the slightest fraction of an inkling about suspension geometry!

#87 mp4

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 20:54

Originally posted by Barry Boor
Now, you must all blame Ian Senior for this!

Coming across an actual Supporters Club member after all these years prompted me to check up on the condition (or otherwise) of the story that I wrote years ago. It used to be on the F1 Test Site and on Motor Racing Retro. Sadly, the F1 Test Site is no more (I won't mention what you get on that URL these days.... :eek: ) and since Franco Varani rebuilt his Retro site, it appears not to be there either. (At least, I cannot find it.)

So, I have done the obvious (to me) thing and posted it up on my own Racing Images site.
http://members.atlasf1.com/barry_boor

I offer a multitude of apologies to those who have seen and heard far too much about this racing nonentity during my 2 years at TNF, but there just may be one or two people left on the planet who might like to read it and marvel at the unbelieveable stupidity exhibited by a small band of loonies more than thirty years ago.


Barry,
I LOVED reading this. :up: :up: :up:
It sounds like you had one heck of a time in a, sadly, more simple time. Can you imagine anyone doing this in 2004? I think not.
As well, I really liked the pics you posted from '77 and '78. These were, very much, my formative years. Except for, maybe, 3 I can name all the drivers shown. Figuring out the cars is a piece of cake! ;)
This takes me back to a very good place.
I was there when Gilles made his debut for Ferrari, at Mosport. I was also there when he won at Montreal. The funny part about that was the fact it was snowing as we drove up on Sunday morning.
Good Sir, I thank you for jogging my memory and bringing a few smiles to a very crabby bastard! :kiss:

#88 Barry Boor

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 21:28

:blush:

#89 Even Darker

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Posted 29 July 2004 - 09:32

Barry

Finally found time to print off the Connew story and read it all (In spite of the fact that I've worked with IT systems since 1979, I'm still too much of a Luddite to enjoy reading long documents on screen).

I think it's a really great story. Apart from the inspirational story of just how far you can get with hard work and determination (or could back then) I felt that it gave me a view of things that I've never understood from the spectators side of the fence.

When I hear about modern F1 teams having 100 or 200 people, I can't help wondering what on earth they all find to do. Not being of a practical bent and never having had any involvement with a race team, I find it very hard to imagine what needs to be done.

Your story has helped me to bridge a gap in my understanding. Reading about all the difficulties that you encountered and overcame, especially the episode with the oil swirling round into the catch tank, has given me a bit of an insight into all the things that a big team has to do if they're going to turn up at a race track with a car that has most of these things sorted out.

Thanks for helping to illuminate one small part of my ignorance! :up:

#90 Twin Window

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Posted 29 July 2004 - 09:40

Originally posted by Even Darker

When I hear about modern F1 teams having 100 or 200 people...

And the rest! Renault, for example, have nearly 500 staff... :eek:

I remember when Williams did quite well with around 30, if that. That would have been in 1980.

Twinny

#91 eldougo

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Posted 29 July 2004 - 09:57

:p
Most teams in the 70s had only 15 to 20 staff if the where lucky ,mostly 6 to 8 mechanics ,a tyre man , truck driver , manager , timing person, Designer .motorhome people etc etc. That was the old day's :up: :cool: It was when the Ground effects & Turbo days that increased the staff levels.
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#92 Racer.Demon

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Posted 29 July 2004 - 10:13

Originally posted by Even Darker
When I hear about modern F1 teams having 100 or 200 people, I can't help wondering what on earth they all find to do. Not being of a practical bent and never having had any involvement with a race team, I find it very hard to imagine what needs to be done.


Also makes you wonder about the upcoming future of, say, post-1990 historic F1 racing in a couple of decades' time - when the laptops and OSs that run the ancient telemetry software have become defunct, not to speak of the number of people with the specific knowledge of those cars wearing thinner.

What's the minimum number of people required to get a modern F1 car running as opposed to a DFV/Hewland kit-car?

#93 Macca

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Posted 29 July 2004 - 10:44

Having seen a couple of recent recent privately-owned F1 cars being demonstrated, it doesn't seem to need too many people............one on the laptop and one on the starter-gun seems to be feasible, and maybe one fiddling with the throttle-slides in the old-fashioned way.

But it would be very interesting if anybody out there has access to a current or recent F1 business' staffing profile, to see what they all do. Obviously one of the body-intensive activities for mechanics is the F1 way of doing pitstops, which needs about eighteen people, whereas F3000 manages with five or so.

In the factory, going by TV documentaries of recent years (Williams-Renault 1993 etc), everybody seems to be a specialist............so there's a group who do nothing but make composites, a group who just install engines fresh from the maker and uninstall them after each race for return, a team of painters, a gearbox department and so forth..............and then there's the PR/marketing types :down:



Paul M

#94 Racer.Demon

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Posted 29 July 2004 - 10:50

How about the dozens of people employed by Ferrari in their 24-hour aero department?

As can be read here: http://www.atlasf1.c...4/ger/gray.html (this week's interview on Atlas with Ferrari's Chief Aerodynamicist, John Iley).

#95 Roger Clark

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Posted 29 July 2004 - 17:16

How do these numbers compare with those employed by the Mercedes racing team in the 30s? Discounting people involved in sponsorship related activities.

#96 Macca

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Posted 30 July 2004 - 08:40

I've just got round to reading the Telegraph interview with Sir Frank a couple of weeks ago; IIRC he said WGP employ 300.

I wonder how many are in the design/aero/modelling sectiona alone - that must be the biggest difference from 25 years ago.


Paul M

#97 petefenelon

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Posted 30 July 2004 - 10:26

Barry (and indeed everyone else who's contributed to this thread)....

I think your Connew story, and the thread that has evolved from it, has been probably the most entertaining thing I've ever encountered on Atlas. You've caught so many things perfectly - the dreams and ambitions, the enthusiasm, the effort, the camaraderie of racing; the major disappointments and the minor triumphs.

I think there's a truly wonderful "cult" book to be made from the Connew Story - anyone who read and enjoyed "Flat Out, Flat Broke" would love it, for a start....


pete

#98 Ruairidh

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Posted 30 July 2004 - 14:58

I remember one story about John Surtees "team" going to a race in the early 70s consisting of 2 mechanics.

#99 Even Darker

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Posted 30 July 2004 - 15:30

Originally posted by petefenelon
Barry (and indeed everyone else who's contributed to this thread)....

I think your Connew story, and the thread that has evolved from it, has been probably the most entertaining thing I've ever encountered on Atlas. You've caught so many things perfectly - the dreams and ambitions, the enthusiasm, the effort, the camaraderie of racing; the major disappointments and the minor triumphs.

I think there's a truly wonderful "cult" book to be made from the Connew Story - anyone who read and enjoyed "Flat Out, Flat Broke" would love it, for a start....


pete


I agree, with all the professional and amateur writers on this forum, you'd find no trouble getting some help to research additional facts and put together a book that would be fascinating for real motor racing fans. It might not sell millions, but I'm sure it would be worth doing.

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#100 Barry Boor

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Posted 30 July 2004 - 19:28

This book idea has festered with me for 30 years!

However, at least one distinguished TNF member, who himself has had books published, has assured me that it really would be a waste of time.

Even if a publisher were to be found, the interest in the story would be so minimal as to make the project simply not viable.

I did send a draught synopsis (!) to one publisher years ago and it came back - very nice, thanks but no thanks.

I fear it will have to remain in the narrow corridors of interest that TNF people inhabit.