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Rallysprint info request


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#1 Collombin

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 21:38

At the end of 1985 I taped an event called the Rallysprint that pitted rally drivers against Grand Prix drivers - this particular edition featured GP drivers Nigel Mansell, Martin Brundle, John Watson and Thierry Boutsen against a rally team of Juha Kankkunen, Stig Blomqvist, Malcolm Wilson and Kalle Grundel.

The contest consisted of 3 events - a rally stage (notable for Mansell's valiant attempt to run over a spectator that presumably bore a passing resemblance to Nelson Piquet), a car parking and skills event (called an auto test I think), in which Martin Brundle looked particularly impressive (no mean feat in a Rover 216), and finally a circuit race around Donington that was dominated by John Watson.

The overall contest winner was Stig Blomqvist, but the GP drivers beat the rally drivers in the team event.

Each year afterwards, I kept an eye out for what I had assumed was an annual event, but never again heard anything about it. Murray had made reference in his commentary to the fact that Tony Pond had won the event 3 times in the past, and that Nigel Mansell was the only GP driver ever to win the event.

Does anybody have any more information about the years that the event ran, who the previous winners and competitors were etc? Was 1985 the last one or did I somehow manage to miss it in later years?

Thanks in advance.

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#2 Tim Murray

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 00:25

I'm fairly sure there was an event in 1986, won by Damon Hill, but I don't remember any subsequent events.

#3 HiRich

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 11:21

I have a tape of the 1983 event at Donington (amazing what you save as a kid), but no way of ripping or copying it at present.

I definitely remember one being held at Cadwell Park - this might be the one Damon Hill won.

#4 rx-guru

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 11:40

I think these events were all called "Donington Rallysprint".

Here are the results of the one held on October 25 1980:
1. Tony Pond (Triumph TR7)
2. Alan Jones (Triumph TR7)
and John Watson (Lancia Stratos HF)
4. Per Eklund (Lancia Stratos HF)
5. Jody Scheckter (Ford Escort BDA)
6. Hannu Mikkola (Ford Escort BDA)
7. Russell Brookes (Talbot Sunbeam Lotus)
8. Derek Daly (Talbot Sunbeam Lotus)

#5 Teapot

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 12:13

There's a report on "Autosprint Anno 1978" (the Italian magazine's annual review) about a "Texaco Rally Sprint", hosted by Nick Brittan, that took place at Donington. It was a two days event, with track and rally stages. Among the competitors were John Watson, Jody Scheckter, Patrick Depailler, Alan Jones, Patrick Tambay, Russell Brookes, Bjorn Waldegaard, Ari Vatanen, Andy Dawson and Brian Nelson.
The first event, a Ford Fiesta saloon car race, was won by John Watson in front of Andy Dawson, but the highlight of the race was a triple somersault performed by the always restrained Vatanen.

The rally stage was a 2.5 km gravel track in the park. Watson climbed aboard a Triumph TR V8, with Tambay driving Willie Rutherford's Mazda, Russel Brooks and Waldegaard sharing their Escorts with Scheckter and Jones. Tambay, Depailler and Dawson drove Chequered Flag's Stratos. The fastest of the rally stage was Russel Brookes with 89''5, but the overall winner was Dawson, followed by Brookes, Watson and Scheckter.

#6 Tim C 27

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 13:47

Two and a half years after the original question was posted, I can maybe add :

I went to Donington in '85 for the Rallysprint. I didn't see much of the event as it was very foggy - I went more to see the demo of a Williams Honda FW10b by Mansell. It was a couple of months after his first wins at Brands and Kylami. I was (and still am) a huge Williams fan.

Despite the poor visibility, he went for it and I can clearly recall him wheelspinning with every gearchange onto the pitstraight. It was the first time I'd seen a turbo F1 car in action

There was also a race betweeen various F1 principals - Ron Dennis and Frank Williams being involved - I don't know who else drove in this, or the result, unfortunately.

Because the weather was so poor, My Dad and I went to the museum, where I was shocked to see a bloke who looked like Ron Dennis walking around. He signed my autograph book and was very nice.

They are my memories of the day.
Tim

#7 nmansellfan

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 15:34

A video of the '85 circuit race at Donnington is on YouTube somewhere, it has Japanese commentary on top of Murray's commentary!

#8 malcolm6

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 16:32

After Donington they moved to Brands hatch for a couple of years with toyota involvement - Nick Britain (?spelling) promotion - may have been about 5 all told

Malcolm

#9 arttidesco

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 10:44

Posted Image

Saw this TR7 at Race Retro fully prepped for night driving.

Posted Image

But was surprised to see the Texaco Rallysprint stickers on the door,

Posted Image


Does anyone know if this car was one of the actual vehicles used in the Texaco Rallysprint if so who drove it and what year ?

The only reference I have found is 1978 ?

Alternatively if it was not used in the Texaco Rally Sprint can anyone shed any light on it's History ?

All contributions will be credited in a forthcoming blog.

Thanking you in anticipation.




#10 Tim Murray

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 12:17

The Texaco Rally Sprint was a single-stage rally event run at Esgair Dafydd in April 1978 for the benefit of BBC TV. It was a completely different event to the similarly-titled (Texaco) Donington Rally Sprint as featured in this thread.

Tony Pond finished second in the Esgair Dafydd event driving TR7 V8 OOM 512R, wearing #6 and looking very similar to the car in Ralph's photos (except for not having Fred Gallagher's name on the side). There's a period photo of the car on this page. The 1979 Esgair Dafydd event was sponsored by BP VF7, and was won by Per Eklund in a T-registered TR7 V8.

So my theory is that the TR7 in Ralph's photos is another car made up to look like Pond's 1978 Rally Sprint car, but I'm sure that RS2000 or one of our other rally experts will know more.

Edited by Tim Murray, 10 March 2011 - 12:19.


#11 alfredaustria

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 14:38

I'm fairly sure there was an event in 1986, won by Damon Hill, but I don't remember any subsequent events.

Are you sure, that Damon took part 1986 ? Perhaps do you have any further details please?

#12 Kevan

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 16:12

Are you sure, that Damon took part 1986 ? Perhaps do you have any further details please?


It rings a vague bell with me.

The later Donington Rallysprint events were slightly different to the earlier ones. While the earlier events had used a variety of different rally cars for the rally part of the competition, from 1983/4, all of the drivers used the same type of car- event sponsor Austin Rover providing Rover SD1 Vitesses for the rally stage, as well as various combinations of Metros, Maestros, Montegos and Rover 200s for the other parts of the competition.

Some videos
1983 race in MG Maestros


1983 autotest, MG Metro
http://www.youtube.c...feature=related

1983 rally stage in Rover SD1
http://www.youtube.c...feature=related
http://www.youtube.c...feature=related

More rallysprint Rover action- think this might be '84?
http://www.youtube.c...feature=related
http://www.youtube.c...feature=related


IIRC Toyota took over from Austin Rover as sponsor and car supplier for the last one or two events- I think it was one of these that Hill competed in?

Edited by Kevan, 10 March 2011 - 16:18.


#13 RS2000

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 16:43

So my theory is that the TR7 in Ralph's photos is another car made up to look like Pond's 1978 Rally Sprint car, but I'm sure that RS2000 or one of our other rally experts will know more.


Not a works registration so I'm pretty sure you are right - one of the reasons I won't attend Race Retro, as it degenerates into "spot the non-replica".

Rallysprint was a dubious title even for the Esgair Dafydd event (which was serious stuff in a real rally stage context). As for using it for a multi-disciplined competition at a race track.... (and don't start me off on what relevance Rallycross ever had to rallying...)

I'm pretty sure Damon Hill won the Donnington event before 1996, when winning it was a worthwhile boost for his career. There was the famous story circulating (in rally circles at least) of Betty Hill going up to Jim McRae(?) and saying: "well done Russell!".


#14 Alan Cox

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 19:25

Are you sure, that Damon took part 1986 ? Perhaps do you have any further details please?

Damon definitely won the 1986 Rallysprint with, IIRC, a Toyota MR2. I think that it was held at Brands that year, or am I imagining that?

#15 mscheeres

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 19:41

Would this have some kind of relationship to the Tour of Britain events held in the 70s (and probaby before and after that period too)?

Never heard of this, learn something new here every day :wave:

#16 Tim Murray

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 20:39

Are you sure, that Damon took part 1986 ? Perhaps do you have any further details please?

Having dug out the relevant issue of Autosport, I can confirm that Alan is right – the 1986 Rallysprint was held at Brands (in November) after eight years at Donington, and the cars used were Toyotas. For the first time the F1 and rally drivers had a team of ‘young thrusters’ to contend with, so the line-up was Derek Warwick, Martin Brundle and Johnny Dumfries representing F1, Stig Blomqvist, Russell Brookes and Jimmy McRae on the rally drivers team, and ‘young thrusters’ Damon Hill, Gary Brabham and Mark Lovell.

The event consisted of a rally stage, an autotest and a race. Interestingly, in light of Bernie’s current suggestions, they tried to spice the autotest up by soaking the Brands startline area with a fire hose, but because this bit slopes, most of the water drained straight off again! Mark Lovell won the rally stage, Martin Brundle the autotest, and Damon Hill the race. Overall, Hill and Russell Brookes were tied for first place, but as the tie breaker was the finishing position in the race Hill was declared the winner. The rally drivers won the team event. Hill described his driving in the race as ‘about as tidy as my bedroom’.

1. Damon Hill 23 pts
2. Russell Brookes 23 pts
3. Johnny Dumfries 22 pts
4. Martin Brundle 22 pts

The Tour of Britain was a completely different style of event, although it did combine racing and rallying.

#17 IrishMariner

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 20:45

Wasn't there something similar on BBC in the late-80's Gp. A period? I recall the likes of Lovell, Fiorio and Arrikala driving Gemini-liveried RS Cosworths on stages.

My over-riding memory being Lovell's (RIP) spectacular drive on a Manx stage.

#18 RS2000

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 21:11

Wasn't there something similar on BBC in the late-80's Gp. A period? I recall the likes of Lovell, Fiorio and Arrikala driving Gemini-liveried RS Cosworths on stages.
My over-riding memory being Lovell's (RIP) spectacular drive on a Manx stage.


"Rally Challenge", or some other equally inappropriate title for what was most definitely not a rally. Pretty sure that's been covered on here before too. May have been a second one but first was Castle O'er in Astras, Dalby(? N.Yorks forest anyway) in GT4s and 309s and IoM in M3s and Sierra Cosworths (Andrews colours?). Airikkala, Blomquist, Lovell, Wilson and Aitken-Walker? Famous for "The Captain" reading the notes too slowly initially to keep "original Stig's" lead in the final M3 runs and speeding up (as did the driver in tune to the notes) to just retain the win.
Maybe there was another later one with Alex Fiorio in it?

#19 arttidesco

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 07:30

Thanks for your input everyone, so a replica not a works car, not the first one that fooled me, there was a copy of Mikkola's Safari wining Escort that had me fooled until the gentleman on the stand put me right :rolleyes:

I see understand your reticence about Race Retro RS200 :up:

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#20 Kevan

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 12:25

Would this have some kind of relationship to the Tour of Britain events held in the 70s (and probaby before and after that period too)?

Never heard of this, learn something new here every day :wave:


No, a totally different event. Tour of Britain was a multi-day event, which combined both rally stages and circuit races- think there were 4 run in the 70's (73-4-5-6?) and a one-off revival in the late 80's (1989 I think?)

The Donington rallysprints were single-day affairs run for TV, and consisting of a run over a rally stage, an autotest, and a race, with a small group of drivers competing- usually rally drivers vs F1

#21 BRG

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 17:11

"Rally Challenge", or some other equally inappropriate title for what was most definitely not a rally. Pretty sure that's been covered on here before too. May have been a second one but first was Castle O'er in Astras, Dalby(? N.Yorks forest anyway) in GT4s and 309s and IoM in M3s and Sierra Cosworths (Andrews colours?). Airikkala, Blomquist, Lovell, Wilson and Aitken-Walker? Famous for "The Captain" reading the notes too slowly initially to keep "original Stig's" lead in the final M3 runs and speeding up (as did the driver in tune to the notes) to just retain the win.
Maybe there was another later one with Alex Fiorio in it?

It was the Mobil 1 Rally Challenge, run in 1989 & 1990. Six special stages of gravel & Tarmac inc; Dalby (Yorks), Scotland and Druidale & Sartfield in I.O.M. Each driver had an identical car for each stage. Featuring in 1989; L. Aitken-Walker, M. Wilson, P. Airikkala, Blomqvist, Brookes, Lovell and in 1990 Llewellin, Fiorio, Wilson, Blomqvist, Aitken-Walker & Airikkala. 6 cars; Nova GTE, Celica GT4, Sierra Cosworth, Subaru Legacy RS & Delta Integrale.

Edited by BRG, 11 March 2011 - 17:11.


#22 IanG

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 19:52

Posted Image

This is the line up for the 1989 Mobil Rally Challenge. Picture taken on the last day at Sartfield hairpin on the I.O.M.
In 1990 I did it with Dave Metcalfe. I don't remember Dai Llewellin being there that year.

#23 IanG

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 19:59

Posted Image

Some more on the Donnington Rallysprint. The picture was taken November 1981. Jim McRae in the car, Malcolm Patrick standing at the side and me looking bored behind Malcolm. This was the first rallysprint at Donnington that I know of and Nigel Mansell certainly drove the Ascona that day.

#24 Tim Murray

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 20:32

As Teapot said in post 5, there was definitely a Donington Rallysprint in 1978, won by Andy Dawson. The MN report refers to it as the second Rallysprint, so I assume the first was in 1977, but I've not been able to track it down.

Edited by Tim Murray, 11 March 2011 - 21:36.


#25 RS2000

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 21:22

Jim McRae in the car, Malcolm Patrick standing at the side.


MP probably on the scrounge for halfshafts for his car, that ran much of the National championship on the only set he could get?

Edited by RS2000, 11 March 2011 - 21:23.


#26 BRG

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Posted 12 March 2011 - 16:48

In 1990 I did it with Dave Metcalfe. I don't remember Dai Llewellin being there that year.

Maybe Dave Metcalfe replaced Dai for some reason? The Nova GTE on the list of cars certainly hints at Mr Metcalfe!

#27 skyblueracer

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 19:04

Any one remember the year the rally sprint was backed by Eaton yale .The high light for me was the destruction in the paddock ,when they let the drivers loose in Fork lift trucks .

#28 Kevan

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Posted 14 March 2011 - 18:35

Having dug out the relevant issue of Autosport, I can confirm that Alan is right – the 1986 Rallysprint was held at Brands (in November) after eight years at Donington, and the cars used were Toyotas. For the first time the F1 and rally drivers had a team of ‘young thrusters’ to contend with, so the line-up was Derek Warwick, Martin Brundle and Johnny Dumfries representing F1, Stig Blomqvist, Russell Brookes and Jimmy McRae on the rally drivers team, and ‘young thrusters’ Damon Hill, Gary Brabham and Mark Lovell.


Toyota sponsored a second 'Rallysprint' event at Brands in 1987, I've just tripped over the event report in an old issue of Motoring News whilst looking for something totally unrelated.

The usual format applied, rally stage in a Group A Toyota Supra, an autotest in Corollas and a race in MR2s, with F1 and rally driver teams plus a trio of 'Coming Men' as the young drivers were described by MN's report.
The F1 team was again an all-British affair, Brundle and Warwick being joined this time by Jonathan Palmer. Conversely, the rally lineup was 100% Scandinavian- Blomqvist, Juha Kankkunen and Per Eklund- a last-minute substitute for Jimmy McRae who was otherwise engaged on the Rallye du Var. The thid team comprised Gary Brabham, Paul Warwick, and 17-year-old FF2000 racer Emily Newman

MN's report doesn't give the points, but the result was:

1: Jonathan Palmer
2: Derek Warwick
3: Martin Brundle
4: Juha Kankkunen
5: Gary Brabham
6: Stig Blomqvist
7: Per Eklund
8: Paul Warwick
9: Emily Newman

Was this the last one?

Edited by Kevan, 14 March 2011 - 18:56.


#29 RS2000

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Posted 14 March 2011 - 19:57

Was this the last one?


Hopefully...

Sorry but I simply do not believe these "TV spactaculars" added anything to "our" sport (as opposed to that of a few commercial interests, including manufacturers who were not contributing to all levels). They would not run without amateur marshals - and they are such a valuable commodity today that anything that distracts effort from existing branches of the sport is not something I can support or enthuse over.

Edited by RS2000, 14 March 2011 - 19:57.


#30 Nephew

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Posted 15 March 2011 - 05:40

The Texaco Rally Sprint was a single-stage rally event run at Esgair Dafydd in April 1978 for the benefit of BBC TV. It was a completely different event to the similarly-titled (Texaco) Donington Rally Sprint as featured in this thread.

Tony Pond finished second in the Esgair Dafydd event driving TR7 V8 OOM 512R, wearing #6 and looking very similar to the car in Ralph's photos (except for not having Fred Gallagher's name on the side). There's a period photo of the car on this page. The 1979 Esgair Dafydd event was sponsored by BP VF7, and was won by Per Eklund in a T-registered TR7 V8.

So my theory is that the TR7 in Ralph's photos is another car made up to look like Pond's 1978 Rally Sprint car, but I'm sure that RS2000 or one of our other rally experts will know more.



#31 Nephew

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Posted 15 March 2011 - 05:44

The Texaco Rally Sprint was a single-stage rally event run at Esgair Dafydd in April 1978 for the benefit of BBC TV. It was a completely different event to the similarly-titled (Texaco) Donington Rally Sprint as featured in this thread.

Tony Pond finished second in the Esgair Dafydd event driving TR7 V8 OOM 512R, wearing #6 and looking very similar to the car in Ralph's photos (except for not having Fred Gallagher's name on the side). There's a period photo of the car on this page. The 1979 Esgair Dafydd event was sponsored by BP VF7, and was won by Per Eklund in a T-registered TR7 V8.

So my theory is that the TR7 in Ralph's photos is another car made up to look like Pond's 1978 Rally Sprint car, but I'm sure that RS2000 or one of our other rally experts will know more.


i remember a stage being televised up the side of a mountain in wales and Barry Lee was in his Black mk 2 Escort Rally cross car and put it sideways in a very spectacular manner after the finish line does anyone remember if this was the same event.

#32 Collombin

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Posted 15 March 2011 - 20:58

Anyone remember a pro-celebrity event called Driving Force? I remember Barry Lee won it in 1984.



#33 BRG

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Posted 15 March 2011 - 21:34

Hopefully...

Sorry but I simply do not believe these "TV spactaculars" added anything to "our" sport (as opposed to that of a few commercial interests, including manufacturers who were not contributing to all levels). They would not run without amateur marshals - and they are such a valuable commodity today that anything that distracts effort from existing branches of the sport is not something I can support or enthuse over.

Sorry but I don't agree. These were events designed for TV and anything that gets our sport onto the tube instead of yet more bat and ball games must be a good thing. They provided an interesting comparison between the stars of F1 and rallying (often to the surprise of the more blinkered F1 fan, a species that still exists in droves, as this forum testifies). They were always eventful and entertaining, not always the case with the purer forms of the sport, and must surely have introduced some people to the sport in general as well as showing some racing fans that the rough stuff could be just as interesting.

Of course, events like these should be occasional adjuncts that do not distract too much from the mainstream, but there is surely a place for them. We still have the Race of Champions, after all, although sadly in a degraded form as a stadium-based novelty, compared to the full-blooded event that it was when held in the Canaries. I watched all of these rallysprints and thoroughly enjoyed them all, and I even went to one of the Donington events. Where else could I see the one and only original Stig putting the GP stars into their place?