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Cooper, Lotus, BRM... or even Bugatti?


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#51 Rupertlt1

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 14:09

The history of the 'Pooper' from 1955 is worth a look:

 

https://library.revs...EARCHALL=Pooper

 

https://library.revs...OSEARCHALL=Lipe

 

Gordon Lipe had a single-seater Cooper-Porsche in 1954:

 

A mechanical "full house" in every sense of the word, Tip Lipe's blown Porsche installation in a Formula III Cooper. 

 

See: http://www.britishra...per-Porsche.htm

 

B.R.S.C.C. Crystal Palace, Whit Monday, 10 June 1957

"Among the 30,000 spectators

was Moss, whose much-publicised

Cooper-Porsche did not arrive

from the United States in time

to race."

Norwood News, Friday 14 June 1957

 

Does anybody have an entry list? 

 

RGDS RLT


Edited by Rupertlt1, 02 August 2019 - 16:28.


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#52 Roger Clark

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 17:31

There’s an entry list in “A Record of Motor Racing at Crystal Palace” by Richard Page. Moss is shown as entered in a Cooper-Porsche entered by S Moss Ltd but DNA. I usually find Richard’s work to be accurate.

#53 Rupertlt1

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 20:55

See: https://forums.autos...7/#entry1179987

 

 

MILES INDICATED the

Porsche factory has reacted

rather violently to his-and pre-

sumbly his boss, John von Neu-

mann's-Porsche Spyder-en-

gined Cooper special. (The

factory strongly disapproves of

its engines being used in other

automobiles.)

The very light and potent car

is virtually unbeatable in its

class and a great threat to even

such open class staff as the big

Ferraris.

Independent Press-Telegram, Long Beach, CA, Sun 10 Mar 1957, Page 67

(includes typos)

 

Humiliating to be dusted off by some west coast engine-swappers.

Was Moss stymied by Porsche intervention? The ex-Ken Miles car appears to have been airbrushed from history?

A classic case of what might have been - Porsche could have teamed up with Cooper and changed the course of history. (Borgward saw the opportunity.)

The later Elva-Porsche met with some ambivalence from the Porsche factory?

 

See: http://www.tamsoldra...erPorsche1.html

 

RGDS RLT


Edited by Rupertlt1, 03 August 2019 - 15:09.


#54 Roger Clark

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Posted 04 August 2019 - 07:52

Porsche’s main interest was in tough long-distance races such Le Mans, the Targa and the Mille Miglia. It is hardly surprising that they could be beaten by lightweight specialists in shorter races. In Europe there was little cross-over between cars built for the two disciplines, an obvious exception being Lotus at Le Mans in 1957.

#55 Rupertlt1

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Posted 04 August 2019 - 09:51

If Porsche wanted Ken Miles/John von Neumann to cease racing the Cooper-Porsche in California, did they act to prevent Stirling Moss racing the car at Crystal Palace?

The car never appeared in Europe?

Porsche were interested in selling customer cars - particularly in the lucrative USA market - these sprint specials were a threat?

Miles was winning in "a new factory lightweight Porsche Spyder" at Palm Springs, CA, in April 1957 - surely a response to this threat?

 

RGDS RLT 


Edited by Rupertlt1, 04 August 2019 - 10:55.


#56 Roger Clark

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Posted 05 August 2019 - 16:20

Was the “new factory lightweight Porsche Spyder” the 550A? Karl Ludvigsen, in Excellence was Expected” says that Miles started driving an ex-works example in 1957. The 550A, also known as the RS was significantly lighter than the 550, having a tubular speceframe. Porsche built 37 of these cars in 1956 and 57.

#57 Rupertlt1

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Posted 05 August 2019 - 18:17

At the Paramount Ranch races, on 16 June 1957, Ken Miles won the under 1,500 cc hour long semi-main in "his Le Mans five-speed gearbox Porsche Spyder."

 

Porsche needed the Cooper-Porsche like a hole in the head. A substantial portion of Porsche revenue and sales derived from the sale of racing cars (as it does today - 32 cars on the grid at the Porsche Supercup at Hockenheim, 2019). Pomona preview:

 

THE SUGARMAN* stable, in-

cidentally, includes the recently

purchased Porsche-Cooper built

by Ken Miles-a car we believe

to be the best modified sports

car under 1,500 cc's in the na-

tion.

Miles raced the car for his

sponsor, Von Neumann, last sea-

son and was unbeatable in it.

They were finally forced to re-

tire the car when the Porsche

factory, very displeased with

the hybrid's consistently win-

ning over the Spyders, threat-

ened to pull Von Neumann's

Porsche distributorship.

McAfee is expected to run the

car in the under 1,500 event.

Independent Press-Telegram, Long Beach, CA, Sunday 21 Jul 1957, Page 32

* Stan Sugarman, Phoenix industrialist.

 

RGDS RLT


Edited by Rupertlt1, 05 August 2019 - 20:04.


#58 RCH

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Posted 06 August 2019 - 10:23

It seems to me that thinking on mid-engined designs would have gone like this. Other manufacturers would have seen Benz and Auto Union efforts and maybe seen advantages and disadvantages too, they saw no great advantage over what they were doing already so why change? Clearly they were thinking about it, Alfa Romeo, Cisitalia and Bugatti played with it maybe Connaught too. Cooper built 500cc cars with the engine behind the driver because it was convenient. When they came to use bigger engines, Bristol and Jaguar, they did not lend themselves to mid-engined placing so they were front engined. Using much lighter and smaller Climax units in the "Bobtail" meant they could revert to their favoured mid-engined format and could then develop to F1 and 2 cars. Again other manufacturers would have sat up and taken notice in 1958 but it was 1959 that made the difference, had Ferrari or BRM dominated in 1959 then the swing to mid-engined designs would have come much later. 



#59 Sterzo

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Posted 06 August 2019 - 14:50

Perhaps the Cooper influence was enhanced, paradoxically, by the lack of respect with which they were viewed. Remember Romolo Tavoni's bug-on-its-back hand gestures when Cooper led the '58 Argentine GP?  Chapman's view of Cooper's bent-tube frames isn't recorded but cannot have been complimentary. So if crude and unsophisticated Cooper could win by going rear-engined, what might they achieve? 



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#60 D-Type

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Posted 06 August 2019 - 16:37

Let's go back to Cooper for a minute.  The 500s were all rear engined as it proved the way to go.  But when they produced larger cars- Cooper-MG sports and Cooper-Bristol and the Cooper-Jaguar.they switched to a front engined configuration,But when they produced the Bobtail they reverted to a rear engined layout.  Now what inspired this major change in design philosophy?  Because it was the F2 and F1 cars that followed the Bobtail which really led to the rear-engined revolution.


Edited by D-Type, 06 August 2019 - 16:37.


#61 Ray Bell

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Posted 06 August 2019 - 17:06

Do you need the word 'Brabham' spelled out?

Putting the Bristol engine in the 39 had to be the turning point, surely.

#62 David Birchall

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Posted 06 August 2019 - 17:27

Various Americans put Porsche engines in the back of T39 Coopers as well...   

It would seem to be a natural evolutionary move for Cooper to build a rear engined single seater for F1/F2 given their experience with the F3 cars.



#63 Rupertlt1

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Posted 06 August 2019 - 18:07

Various Americans put Porsche engines in the back of T39 Coopers as well...   

It would seem to be a natural evolutionary move for Cooper to build a rear engined single seater for F1/F2 given their experience with the F3 cars.

 

For 'Pooper' USA history see above. Porsche were plainly hostile to this activity, but by 1955 something was stirring. Significant that this was in the USA.

For Cooper to succeed they needed an engine supplier (Coventry-Climax, also Borgward) and a gearbox/transmission.

Neither C-C, or Borgward, felt threatened by Cooper and were happy to collaborate.

Porsche later entered F2 and F1 but with only limited success. Underestimated Cooper and later Ferrari, Chapman.

 

RGDS RLT  


Edited by Rupertlt1, 06 August 2019 - 18:22.


#64 RCH

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Posted 06 August 2019 - 22:16

Do you need the word 'Brabham' spelled out?

Putting the Bristol engine in the 39 had to be the turning point, surely.

 

Ray, Brabham manufactured an F1 ish car out of the T39 Cooper but did it give the idea to Cooper that they could build a competitive F1 car? Surely the turning point was the use of a Climax engine in the T39.



#65 Ray Bell

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Posted 06 August 2019 - 23:22

That move, however, was still a small-capacity engine with limited power and very limited weight...

The Bristol engine was a different thing altogether. And if I have my sums right it was done before the FPF was in production, even in 1500 form.

Then there's the question of what Cooper might have done with the Godiva V8. Were they on the waiting list for this engine? Did they have a plan?

#66 Rupertlt1

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 01:11

Found these photographs of #238 from 1958 - is this the ex-Ken Miles car?

Chuck Howard in 1958; Al Whatley, Alamo, CA, in 1959, 1960 - Whatley bought the Howard car.

 

https://library.revs...ion=p17257coll1

 

https://library.revs...ion=p17257coll1

 

https://library.revs...ion=p17257coll1

 

https://library.revs...ion=p17257coll1

 

https://library.revs...ion=p17257coll1

 

RGDS RLT


Edited by Rupertlt1, 07 August 2019 - 02:42.


#67 D-Type

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 08:35

Do you need the word 'Brabham' spelled out?

Putting the Bristol engine in the 39 had to be the turning point, surely.

Look at the sequencing:

Rear-engined 500s
Front engined Cooper- MG and other sports cars
Front engined Cooper-Bristol

Front engined Cooper-Jaguar
Rear-engined "Bobtail" sports car

Jack Brabham's Bristol engined Bobtail
F2 Cooper, etc

The question is why did Cooper produce the rear engined Bobtail after apparently changing to front engines for cars larger than the 500s.



#68 Sterzo

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 09:33

The F1 cars were developed from the F2 cars, and the original 1956 F2 car was indeed an adaptation of the Bobtail. As D-Type suggests, the Bobtail is the true ancestor. Why was it rear engined? If you think about it, a light sports car with a Feather Weight engine is conceptually closer to an F3 Cooper than to a D-Type (sorry) or Cooper-Jaguar. It surely made sense at least to explore building a bigger F3 car with the small engine tucked behind the driver.

 

This is confirmed by Doug Nye's "Cooper" book, page 119, where he quotes The Autocar saying much the same. In additon, they make the point Cooper had already run the 1096 JAP engine in an F3 chassis. It was a natural step from there to put in the 1098 4 cylinder Climax.



#69 Rupertlt1

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 13:09

"Charles Howard was driving the Porsche Spyder engined Cooper that I built for von Neumann and demonstrated on Saturday that he was not in the least intimidated by the very Cooperish handling of this car."

Ken Miles reporting from Laguna Seca, Competition Press, 30 November 1958, Page 3.

 

RGDS RLT 



#70 Roger Clark

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 15:16

That move, however, was still a small-capacity engine with limited power and very limited weight...

The Bristol engine was a different thing altogether. And if I have my sums right it was done before the FPF was in production, even in 1500 form.

Then there's the question of what Cooper might have done with the Godiva V8. Were they on the waiting list for this engine? Did they have a plan?

 

Des Hammill, in Coverntry Climax Racing Engines says that Climax were approached in 1952 by Rodney Clark (Connaught), John Heath (HWM) and Charles and John Cooper about building an engine for the new Formula 1 in 1954.  He later says that Kieft, HWM and Connaught worked on designs of cars for the FPE - no mention of Cooper.  Cyril Kieft ordered three engines in 1953.

 

 

An interesting snippet that I don't recall is that in 1956, while Climax were still struggling with the development of the FPE John Cooper brought a works 250F Maserati engine to Coventry-Climax to be tested. Hammill says that the engine was on loan to john Cooper for trials in one of his cars.  I wonder what a 1956 Cooper-Maserati would have been like!  Apparently, the Maserati engine only produced 225bhp on the climax dyno.  I rather doubt whether that particular engine was of the standard used in the works cars.



#71 Roger Clark

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 15:34

For 'Pooper' USA history see above. Porsche were plainly hostile to this activity, but by 1955 something was stirring. Significant that this was in the USA.

For Cooper to succeed they needed an engine supplier (Coventry-Climax, also Borgward) and a gearbox/transmission.

Neither C-C, or Borgward, felt threatened by Cooper and were happy to collaborate.

Porsche later entered F2 and F1 but with only limited success. Underestimated Cooper and later Ferrari, Chapman.

 

RGDS RLT  

Borgward didn't supply engines to Cooper.  They supplied Walker and BRP but only on condition that Moss drove one of the cars.



#72 Roger Clark

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 15:45

Karl Ludvigsen, in Excellence Was Expected, says that the first Cooper-Porsches in the USA were based on 500s, not on T39s.  These were the cars build by Pete Lovely and Gordon Lipe.  They look to me to be 500 based.  The Miles car was later and may be T39-based.  Ludvigsen quotes John von Neumann as saying that Porsche didn't object: "They didn't mind because their new car was just as fast!"  This was presumably the 550A.

 

Did Porsche supply engines for these cars or did the builders have to get them from elsewhere?  If the latter, whee?



#73 Rupertlt1

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 16:39

Pete Lovely was a Volkswagen dealer in Seattle?

Gordon C. Lipe ran LIPE Specialty Engineering Co. (Speed equipment dealers, Edelbrock etc etc. Undated.)

Firstly: 2946 Erie Blvd East, Syracuse, NY

Second: 216 Edwards Drive, Fayetteville, NY  

 

I appreciate that US journalists often played up stories but I think some bad feeling was generated by the Ken Miles 'Pooper' - the newspapers certainly thought so - Von Neumann had every reason to play the story down, having bent the knee to Porsche.

 

RGDS RLT


Edited by Rupertlt1, 08 August 2019 - 01:58.


#74 D-Type

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 11:54

Borgward didn't supply engines to Cooper.  They supplied Walker and BRP but only on condition that Moss drove one of the cars.

If memory serves me correctly, Borgward loaned engines to BRP and Walker which is why you don't see Borgward engines in historic racing.



#75 Roger Clark

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 13:58

That sounds very likely.

#76 kayemod

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 14:05

Borgward didn't supply engines to Cooper.  They supplied Walker and BRP but only on condition that Moss drove one of the cars.

 

They were right to do so. Although other drivers seemed not to get on too well with the Cooper/Borgward, I don't think any others achieved much, Stirling won the first three of his drives in the car, and only lost the lead and came second in the fourth and final one, after the car slowed when a fuel pipe or connection failed.



#77 Rupertlt1

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 14:11

We never got to see a Cooper-Borgward in 1961 Formula One - another might have been?

The demise of Borgward has never been fully explained - some question of other German manufacturers ganging up?

 

Other drivers: Chris Bristow, Harry Schell, Ivor Bueb, George Wicken

 

RGDS RLT 


Edited by Rupertlt1, 08 August 2019 - 14:43.


#78 Rupertlt1

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 02:22

Cooper-Borgward results:

 

Oulton Park Empire Trophy, 11 April 1959

3. Ivor Bueb

 

Syracuse GP, 25 April 1959

1. Moss

5. Ivor Bueb

7. George Wicken

 

Crystal Palace London Trophy, 18 May 1959

2. Ivor Bueb

 

Reims Coupe de Vitesse, 5 July 1959

1. Moss

 

B.A.R.C. Aintree British GP, 18 July 1959

1. Bristow (10th O/A)

13th Bueb

 

Rouen GP, 12 July 1959

1. Moss

 

Auvergne GP, Clermont-Ferrand, 25 July 1959

1. Moss

Bueb accident

 

Brands Hatch John Davy Trophy, 3 August 1959

1. Bristow

 

Kentish 100, Brands Hatch, 29 August 1959

3. Moss

Chris Bristow unplaced.

 

Snetterton Silver City Trophy, 11 Oct 1959

1. Bristow

 

South African GP, 1 January 1960

2. Moss

Bristow DNF

 

RGDS RLT


Edited by Rupertlt1, 10 August 2019 - 13:41.


#79 Rupertlt1

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 14:03

From a Borgward advertisement:
Cooper-Borgward won MANUFACTURER'S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP 1959

("Coupe des Constructeurs") for Formula II racing cars

 

B.A.R.C. Yearbook 1960, Page 41.

Formula 2 Constructors' Championship

 

April 26: Syracuse G.P. (188 miles)

1st Moss (Cooper-Borgward) 99.71 m.p.h.

2nd Behra (Ferrari)

3rd Brabham (Cooper-Climax)

 

July 12: Rouen G.P. (142 miles)

1st Moss (Cooper-Borgward) 96.89 m.p.h.

2nd Schell (Cooper-Climax)

3rd Gregory (Cooper-Climax)

 

July 18: R.A.C. British Grand Prix, Aintree

1st Bristow (Cooper-Borgward) 83.14 m.p.h.

2nd H. Taylor (Cooper-Climax)

3rd Ashdown (Cooper-Climax)

 

(No Formula 2 finishers in Monaco, Dutch or

German Grand Prix.)

 

RGDS RLT 


Edited by Rupertlt1, 09 August 2019 - 15:02.


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#80 rl1856

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Posted 13 August 2019 - 02:32

Cooper-Borgward was clearly superior to Cooper-Climax, in FII during 1959-60. Why didn’t anyone use a Cooper Borgward (or Lotus) in F1 In 1961? Surely it would have been as competitive as other British cars ?

#81 Rupertlt1

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Posted 13 August 2019 - 02:39

Borgward went bust. The loaned motors were repoed?  Or vice/versa?

 

Apart from the race at East London, South Africa, (shown above), listed as Formula Libre, I can find no evidence of Borgward troubling the scorers in 1960.

 

RGDS RLT


Edited by Rupertlt1, 13 August 2019 - 03:09.


#82 blueprint2002

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 06:26

Have been waiting for the “Pooper” discussion to end, fascinating though it has been. So that I can introduce another angle to the development of the mid-engined Coopers, which doesn’t seem to have received a lot of attention, at least AFAIK.

In early 1959, the Rob Walker team built a Cooper F1 car with a four-cylinder BRM engine; apparently Alfred Owen agreed to this because it was to be driven by Moss. The car appeared at Goodwood (?) and Monaco, as planned, and then seems to have quietly faded away, having apparently failed to live up to its promise. A dead end as far as Cooper F1 development was concerned: anyway the company had little or nothing to do with it. And that’s about as much as I have been able to find out about it.

Can anyone add anything to that? Thanks in advance.



#83 cedricselzer

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Posted 21 August 2019 - 07:54

I don't think the Borgward was a better engine than the Climax. The drivers were certainly better as Moss and Bristow. I have rebuilt one of these engines and although it had 4 valves per cylinder the combustion chamber and piston were extremely old fashioned. It would have been impossible to get a decent gas flow across the cylinders. Although we only got 110BHP on the brake I would have thought about 130 ish would be more realistic in their day. The climax FPF was a better engine especially in 1961 when they used a 2.5 litre block with cross bolted main bearings. The Borgward engine was originally designed as a sports car engine.



#84 Rupertlt1

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Posted 31 August 2019 - 01:00

Cooper-Borgward:

 

http://www.stilltime...nday-brscc.html

 

http://www.stilltime...nday-brscc.html

 

RGDS RLT