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The history of the Birmingham Superprix


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#1 bigears

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Posted 09 February 2004 - 20:30

I am currently collecting information about the Birmingham Superprix track. I am just on the lookout for footage, photos, circuit information.

I have found someone from an other forum and he emailed me an Excel file of the grid lineup and the all of the races results at the street track from 1986-1990.

But I can't find any information on qualifying laptimes for the F3000 races. Also other information on other racing formulae laptimes would be wonderful as well.

Thank you.

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#2 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 09 February 2004 - 21:06

I can send you a file of all F3000 qualifying times, plus qual. times for the Thundersports race in '86 that didn't take place due to rain /delays etc.

I took photos at all the events aswell (apart from '87) so if you need any let me know.

Let me know your e-mail address (By PM or whatever means), and I'll get some stuff to you.

Cheers

#3 mp4

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Posted 09 February 2004 - 23:44

Originally posted by Jeremy Jackson
I can send you a file of all F3000 qualifying times, plus qual. times for the Thundersports race in '86 that didn't take place due to rain /delays etc.

I took photos at all the events aswell (apart from '87) so if you need any let me know.

Let me know your e-mail address (By PM or whatever means), and I'll get some stuff to you.

Cheers



If you are able, please post some pics for us.

Thanks!

:up:

#4 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 10 February 2004 - 10:21

Some of my photos from TRhundertsports qualifying in 1986 are on my friend's site here (Although, at the moment, the link to that specific race doesn't appear to be working, I presume just a temporary problem)

I'll send some of the F3000 stuff to bigears with the data I have, and hopefully some will apear there

#5 bigears

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Posted 10 February 2004 - 17:24

Thank you for the recent email Jeremy.

Ah I remember this site very well! At the moment I can't get through to the 1986 Thundersports page at the moment. So I will try again tonight.

As I have been Google searching for information last weekend and I thought this might interest you.

http://www.marshalsp...gallery/80.html

It contains some rare photos taken by a marshal who was at the track test in 1986. I am curious who was the driver sitting beside the policeman in a Thundersports car? I checked out the small label on his right hand sight of his overalls. It said something like Randy or Benny?

That Sierra looked beautiful when it goes past the Ferado corner! :love:

My search continues for more photos and information on the street track.....

#6 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 10 February 2004 - 20:00

That looks like Andy Ratcliff, owner and sometime driver of the Burke-Ratcliff Lola T530 (the one in the third pic on that page)

#7 bigears

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Posted 14 February 2004 - 18:58

Thank you Jeremy for answering my questions!

I have finally got through to the Thundersports photographs I wanted to see. They are truly excellent!

I got some nice photos I got from a certain contact. Watch this space...

#8 bigears

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Posted 18 February 2004 - 00:05

I got an other question so I thought it would be more suited in here

As I had the GP2 computer game before and I downloaded the Birmingham Superprix track for the game recently in hope to get more information.

I found this excerpt in the readme.txt file

This track was the home of the Birmingham Superprix F300 race,Always full of action
and spectacular crashes (inc the famous occasion David Hunt`s engine ended up in a
supermarket`s wall!),throw in the notorious bumps and NIGEL MANSELL as a TV commentator
and you had the recipe for the perfect August Bank Holiday entertainment.Very sadly
missed event (IMHO).



I would like to know more about the David Hunt's accident. Also is he related to James Hunt any chance? Finally I am not too sure why he mentioned about Nigel Mansell as a commentator at the races at the Superprix track?

Thank you.

#9 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 18 February 2004 - 17:06

David is indeed the brother of James.

He crashed the Roger Cowman Lola on the first lap (of the first start...) of the 1988 Superprix. Can't remember the details exactly, but I think Andy Wallace was also involved. The next attempt at a start involved Russell Spence's trick with the crane, if I remember it correctly.

I think Autospprt may have published photos of some of the components of Hunt's car on various bits of Birmingham pavement.

Thankfully, I don't recall NM's involvement (Maybe he was on ITV coverage?)

#10 bigears

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Posted 18 February 2004 - 18:23

Now I have found out that David Hunt crashed near the Cavendish Finaince Corner. The corner before the Bromsgrove Street straight. But along with my visit around the track and I couldn't find a supermarket around there though.

So it could be the Halfords Hairpin as there is a big superstore (now it is owned by Currys) there?

I am still curious about Nigel's involvement with the ITV and the commentary for the F3000 race.

#11 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 18 February 2004 - 20:51

Definitely not at the Halfords hairpin. I watched that year's rsce from the outside of Ferodo, and the accident happened after that.

I think the corner before Bromsgrove Street is correct. Must admit I don't remember a supermarket wall neing mentioned at the time (A wall yes, but not a supermarket...). memory could be failing though...

#12 bigears

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Posted 19 February 2004 - 03:06

I looked into my photo collection I got from a contact who went to the races before.

Is there a supermarket somewhere around there? The photo is taken from a certain level of the car park nearby. Apparantly Spence is still somewhere in the air at the time! I can't see much of the debris from the Lola on the right side of the photo?

It is not there anymore as it is a car park. So was the location of the crash occured there?

#13 Rob29

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Posted 19 February 2004 - 08:32

Originally posted by bigears


I am still curious about Nigel's involvement with the ITV and the commentary for the F3000 race.

Nigel did join the ITV(Central) commentary team for at least one year,can't remember which. I went to every race but may still have some video footage.
Halfords were the main sponsors of the event. I still have the mug.

#14 Rob29

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Posted 19 February 2004 - 09:59

Nigel did commentate on the first Superprix of 1986.Have the highlights shown at 12.30 am,Tues,including an interview with Nigel in which he is looking forward to driving in an F1 race there the folowing year!!
Interesting news in yesterdays 'Motorsport News' that a sprint type event including F1 cars may be held in 2005.

#15 bigears

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Posted 19 February 2004 - 11:25

I have been doing extreme Google searching and found out that Nigel Mansell was a very boring commentator during the Superprix races.

I searched in the Google groups and a lot of people have said that during the 1990 race which as exciting with Alesi, Hill, van Poele and so on. There was a great midfield battle and you would expect any commentator to get very excited.

But somehow, he was waffling on about irrelevant points and kept saying a sentence at a time.

I will Pm you soon about the footage you have got. I am pretty interested about it. :)

#16 FlagMan

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Posted 25 February 2004 - 12:31

I think I may be able to clear up the confusion over the 'supermarket' wall. It was in fact the wall of the wholesale vegetable market that Hunts car attacked. The market is situated on the outside of the circuit on the corner of Sherlock Street and Pershore Street.

Try this link - http://www.multimap....ale=5000<br />

Sherlock Street runs from the center bottom of the map in a NNE direction and the market is in the top right of the map.

Tip - click on the Overlay Map button to show th street names

#17 bigears

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 01:12

Thank you for your reply.

I checked out the aerial photo and asked an other contact who supplied me some old BSP photos and video tapes. He said that he had an off (no idea how) and went into the gravel (in a street track?!) on the outside of the Sherwood Street corner and the car flipped into the wall.

The impact ripped off the engine and the car was upside. But luckily he was uninjured.

Now, I am hoping to set up a website about the BSP track in the summer (as I am currently at uni) and I am looking for more stories, information (support races, grid times and any kind) and photos.

If anyone out there got some video footage then I am very interested to know. I might add a small fee ;)

Moderator: Could you please change the title from "Birmingham Superprix qualifying times" to "Birmingham Superprix thread" please? So hopefully it will be more attractive :)

Thank you very much.

For some people who I have PMed, my apologies for no replies to your PMs, I will do it right now.

#18 bigears

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 17:18

I have been busy renaming all of the images I have collected but I cannot work out what/who is that open wheeled blue/red car in the link.

http://www.marshalsp...gallery/80.html

#19 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 18:01

Having problems opening that link...

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#20 bigears

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 18:29

Hmm ok, I have already saved the image

Posted Image

Taken from the Marshal's Post website.

#21 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 18:54

Thanks...

It's Tony Trimmer's Lola T330/2 during the 1986 Formula Libre (qualifying)

#22 Richard Line

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 19:08

Hi Jeremy, It is indeed Tony Trimmer in Hu6 T330 with 332 bodywork. I currently have this chassis and am looking to swap her for something race related.
Regards Richard :cat:

#23 bigears

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 19:26

There was a Formula Libre qualifying session there? :eek:

Did they race at all? I know that the Thundersports race was cancelled due to bad weather.

I only know that the racing formuale that raced at the BSP are:

Thundersports,
F3000,
Metro MGs,
Porsches,
BTCC,

Now Formula Libres! Is there any more?

I got a photo somewhere of a car looking like a Sierra RS500 going along Ferado Corner but BTCC wasn't racing at the BSP track til 1989. :confused:

#24 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 19:53

Libres had their qualifying session on the Monday morning in 1986. Race was scheduled after the F3000s

Order was (would have been)

Renault 5 Turbos
Thundersports (cancelled)
F3000 (Stopped)
FF (Cancelled)
Libre (cancelled)

The BTCC appeared in 1988-90.

Also:

1988: Vauxhall Lotus, 6R4s

1989:
Honda CRXs
Tuscans

1990:

Nothing new: F3000, BTCC, CRX, 6R4, Porsches

(Didn't go in 1987 - on crutches from knee op!)

#25 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 19:59

The photo looks like Rod Birley's Thundersaloon XR4Ti, but there wasn't a Thundersaloon race when I was there...Maybe in 1987 when I wasn't ?!

#26 bigears

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 20:01

Sorry the post was a bit muddled up so I posted it in here:

Posted Image

Taken from the Marshal's Post website.

#27 bigears

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 20:04

Seems like there is a big hole in my recollection and research of the 1987 BSP races/events.

I got no footage or any information about the the 1987 BSP except the F3000 race there.

#28 bigears

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Posted 13 March 2004 - 09:17

Yesterday I have obtained some very impressive footage involving ITV's live broadcasts of the 1986 and 1989 races. Also I got the 1987 highlights.

It was a worthy viewing last night. The 1986 race was very exciting with Perez-Sala running away til the weather gradually got worse as Martini and Michel Ferte caught up with Perez-Sala til the race was stopped as Gilbert-Scott collided with a stationary car near the Telcom chicane.

The 1987 race was a very interesting race as Modena led all of the race. A bit further down Wallace was having a great scrap with Gugelmin and Perez-Sala til he missed his braking point at Ferado Corner.

The F3000 race from 1989 was good too with a good and strong grid which a lot of them have been or will go into F1. It was great to see Jean Alesi holding on to his 1st position with Marco Apicella after he was about 13seconds ahead til he lost a bit of pace in order to see Apicella catching up.

Hopefully I will rip some of the footage from my DVDs and post some small clips in here.

#29 Rob Ryder

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Posted 21 December 2004 - 23:27

The first one is a Ginetta G29-Mazda Thundersports.
h4887 posted a picture of this car on the 'from the Track' thread.
Driven at Birmingham by David Palmer & John Markey .

Second pic looks like Damon Hill. :confused:

The Gary Evans pic.. 1988 Reynard 88D No.20

I wonder how many I have correct :cat:

Rob

#30 Twin Window

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Posted 21 December 2004 - 23:36

Originally posted by Rob Ryder

Second pic looks like Damon Hill. :confused:

It definitely is.

I don't suppose anyone's got a pic of me scoring my goal for 'Italy' in 1986, have they?!

(As described here in a previous thread - see post #60)

#31 bigears

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Posted 21 December 2004 - 23:38

Gosh, I must be suffering from brainfade as I didn't realise it was Damon Hill! :blush:
Was that photo taken after his car broke down on the warm-up lap in 1989?


Could you help me out with the very first link (the Paul Taylor scan that you missed) or even the multi car photograph please?

Thank you for pointing out the other two photos, Rob.

#32 McLarenFormula1

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Posted 21 December 2004 - 23:40

My best guess on the 2nd pick is that it is Damon Hill in '89, driving for the Footwork F3000 team.

[Edit] Nevermind, you've already figured it out!

[Edit again] Rob, I believe that the Ginetta was driven by Mark Hales and John Markey. David Palmer was listed but never drove. (Race was called on account of rain)

#33 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 21 December 2004 - 23:52

Originally posted by bigears
Those photographs have been sitting in my hard drive for many months. I have been tidying and clearing up and found those photographs so I would be grateful if you could identify the driver(s) featured in the photographs below.



Source: from a certain TNF member but I can't remember who! This photo is taken from the Thundersports qualifying/practice session at the 1986 BSP. Name of dirver and car please.

Thank you for your help and merry Christmas. :)


And the TNF member would be me... :wave:

#34 McLarenFormula1

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Posted 22 December 2004 - 00:07

Could the first scan be Pierre-Henri Raphanel driving for Onyx Racing in '87? (Teammate to Stefano Modena, F3000 Champion)

#35 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 22 December 2004 - 00:18

Yes, that's Raphanel in 1987 (race no. 10)

#36 TonyCotton

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Posted 22 December 2004 - 14:00

I think the historic picture is part of Duncan Rabagliatti's collection - it looks like his Kieft Climax at the front with an Alexis FJ behind, and the standing figure with sideboards looks like Duncan. The collection was, of course, featured on BBC2's TopGear just as he was selling it.

#37 bigears

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Posted 24 December 2004 - 18:43

Thank you all for helping me to identify the photographs.

I am wondering about what year the historical photograph was taken? I think it is 1988 as I got a photograph of the 1988 F3000 grid just before the start and the Halfords sponsors on the armco in the historical photo looks similar to the F3000 photo I got.

Jeremy, all credits to you for that lovely Ginetta photograph.

Stuart, sadly I haven't got very many photos from the 1986 BSP event, I got very few scanned images and heaps of Thudersports photographs provided by Jeremy Jackson. I got a dvd copy of the live ITV broadcast of the 1986 F3000 race so you might be somewhere along the pitlane but I don't know who are you and what are your role in the pitlane!

If anyone else got some nice stories or even photographs of the Birmingham Superprix, I would love to hear about it. :)

#38 Peter Morley

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Posted 24 December 2004 - 19:06

The blue sports car that says Kieft on it was definitely Duncan Ratbag's Kieft Climax (LDA 5).

The orange single seater could be Duncan's Aleixs junior, but thinking about it is more likely to be a Kieft 500 (F3) - it looks to have the very deep front wishbone/cross member of a Kieft 500

I think the blue single seater behind the Kieft sportscar is the Kieft Formula Junior, that Alan Baillie had restored around that time, and was demonstrated at Birmingham by one of his stepsons.

Weren't Kieft a Birmingham company, hence their presence?

The 2 small red cars at the rear look to be something like Locosts?

#39 bigears

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Posted 27 December 2004 - 16:02

Tony, thank you very much for the detailed information about the historic photograph and the cars featured in it as well. :clap:

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#40 AlesiUK

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Posted 27 December 2004 - 21:31

ot a little, but would you per chance have any other pictures of the 88,89 or 90 superpix and in particular the F3000 events?

#41 bigears

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Posted 27 December 2004 - 21:41

You asking me or TonyCotton?

If it is me, yes I have a lot of photographs that was taken by my friend (including pits and paddock photographs) and a lot of photographs I have collected from the Internet and books.

Is there any specific drivers or cars you are looking for?

#42 AlesiUK

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Posted 27 December 2004 - 21:50

Originally posted by bigears
You asking me or TonyCotton?

If it is me, yes I have a lot of photographs that was taken by my friend (including pits and paddock photographs) and a lot of photographs I have collected from the Internet and books.

Is there any specific drivers or cars you are looking for?


sorry, yeah i ment you.

I am looking for the cars of Cobra motorsports from 88 and 89(i dont know if they competed in 1990?) and also the cars of superpower from 1990 if possible. In particular any showing the mechanics preparing/working on the cars.

much apreciated :)

#43 bigears

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Posted 30 March 2005 - 19:20

I have recently purchase the Birmingham City Council media guide for the 1989 Halfords Birmingham Superprix from eBayand I have found the time to browse through various media documents.

I discovered something interesting from a media document and it said:

INVITATION

Birminham City Council and Evans Halshaw PLC invote toy to attend a major media conference tto announce Falklands hero Simon Weston's motor racing plans.

The conference takes place at the Copthorne Hotel, Paradise Circus, Birmingham and then on the Halfords Birmingham Super Prix course, on Thursday August 17th 1989.

Timetable:

9.15am: Coffee/Tea,
9.30am: News Conference,
10.15am (approx) Bus leaves Copthorne Hotel for Halfords Corner on the Super Prix course,
10.30am: Simon Weston will drive around a section of the circuit.

RSVP: Valerie Brown, CSS Promotions Ltd

Information in this invitation is embargoed until 9.30am Thursday August 17 1989


This is very interesting. I have no information at all about the conference or what plans Simon Weston made. I did a search in this forum and via Google and no avail.

So can anyone shed some light into this mystery?

Thank you.

#44 Jeremy Jackson

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Posted 31 March 2005 - 09:48

Simon Weston drove a Sierra RS in the Esso Production Saloon series in 1990, sponsored by Bendigo Properties. The car was run by Maxteds.

#45 Vitesse2

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Posted 31 March 2005 - 10:25

I haven't checked this, but there might be some details in his second book of memoirs, which was called "Moving On". The first, "Walking Tall", was published in 1989 so is unlikely to say much (or anything).

#46 simonlewisbooks

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Posted 08 April 2005 - 11:28

I remember Simon Weston the pale blue RS500 at Castle Combe. The track was/is notoriously bumpy , Simon commented on how rough a ride he was getting along the old airfield parimeter roads that form the layout. "But it's just been resurfaced" said the interviewer, mindful of how much cash had just been invested "Pity they didn't move the aeroplanes off it first" was the reply....

Simon Lewis
Transport Books
www.simonlewis.com

ex Castle Combe saloon racer (flat track surfaces are boring! )

#47 bigears

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 17:33

As I am an avid fan of the Birmingham Superprix and I collect all kind of information such as photos, stories, magazines and items relating to the BSP.

So at the moment I am currently looking for information preferrably from MotorSport and Autosport magazines of the making of the BSP from 1966 to 1986. If there is any outside information, I would be grateful.

The 1966 year: A member of the Birmingham City Council approaches Martin Hone to create a proposal of a first ever street race in the UK. So Martin Hone presents a White Paper to the Council in 1966 (no details on date)

1984 April: The Birmingham City Council agrees with a majority vote to take the Road Race Bill to be taken to the Parliament to be approved (6th April to be exact) EDIT>> Correct date is 6th November according to the BSP 1986 media papers I have got.

1985 November: The Birmingham Road Race Bill is given to the Parliament (27th November to be exact)

1985 April: Members of the Parliament approves the Road Race Bill with about 200 votes for and about 88 votes against.

1985 October: The Birmingham Road Race Bill is given the Royal Assent.

1986 March: Motor Circuits Developments announces a three year contract with the Birmingham City Council on the 20th of March.

So does anyone have any information about this or even got the MotorSport and Autosport magazines and check if there is any articles/reports about the process of making the Birmingham Superprix from scratch?

Thank you.

EDIT>>Corrected one date.

#48 KJJ

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 22:16

One snippet of information I found in the Times was that Birmingham City Council voted, on July 11th 1972, by 73 to 56 in favour of holding a race on a three mile circuit run over the city's inner ring road. It was hoped that the first race would be held during August Bank Holiday 1974. This followed on from a feasability study prepared by...........Stirling Moss. Stirling was quoted as saying that the race would not cost Birmingham anything as "I have guarantors to the value of £300,000 and I will pay all the bills."

#49 bigears

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 23:33

Stirling Moss and Graham Hill was closely involved with Martin Hone and his motorsport (social?) club "Opposite Lock."

Interestingly, I don't see Moss' name being mentioned again during the 1980s when the Birmingham Superprix was really going to happen.

I recall seeing one photo from a book at the Birmingham Central Library of Moss celebrating when the Council approved of holidng a race as you pointed out, in 1972.

I am interested to know more about the Opposite Lock club in Birmingham as well. Apparantly, it was claimed to be one the most famous and enduring of the city's venues.

#50 Rob Ryder

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Posted 06 August 2005 - 10:37

Hi
I found this two page article while browsing today... 500k scan ;)

Motor Sport September 1971

Hope it helps.
Rob