Historic Racing Sports Car Club

Formula Junior Report March 2010

Just a quick update this time.

Remember to get your entries in for the HRC two day meeting at Hampton Downs on 20 / 21 March. There is an historic grid which will no doubt be a bit of a mixture but lets try and get a group of FJs so we can have a “play” together. Entry is at : http://www.motorsportentry.com/index.php/ccevent/cceventfront/ Don’t enter in the Classic Trials section.

Please mark in your diaries the TACCOC one day meeting on 11 April at Pukekohe. This meeting is limited to only five grids so you can expect to get a practice and three races (probably what you would get in a “normal” two day meeting). TACCOC is committed to a slow and fast historic grid so it is a real opportunity to race in a grid of like speed cars.

We have just heard that another new FJ is about to hit our shores – and this time another rear engined one. Noel Woodford (who drove Brian Grant’s Lotus Consul in the Bruce McLaren Festival), has acquired the Gemini Mk3 (possibly a Mk3a but more likely a Mk3) that Jim Barclay circulated a few weeks back. The car is coming from the US and has been partially restored but needs some work. It is fortunate that Jim Barclay’s Mk3a can be used as a “check” and I think there is the odd Gemini part floating around that could help Noel – I think I might know where there is an original blank Gemini chassis plate. We welcome Noel to NZFJR and trust that he will have his car out soon to join our ever increasing FJ fleet.

On another note, there is a MSNZ forum being held in Wellington on 31 March to discuss the possible banning of leaded Race Fuel No 1 (actually out of spec AVGAS). There are elements within MSNZ that want a total ban of leaded fuel for environmental reasons. While this maybe OK for the more modern race cars, our historic cars require leaded fuel to combat valve recession problems in our old engines. It is interesting to note that in the aviation field leaded fuel is still permitted, almost worldwide, due to potential engine safety issues. From my research, the motorsport associations of Australia, UK, US and Canada have convinced their respective Ministries of Environment that leaded fuel is essential for historic motorsport and the detrimental effect on the environment is less than minimal – I fear that MSNZ may be the exception to this approach. The ludicrous situation is that if we are forced to use unleaded pump gas then we will need to add a valve recession additive – the most effective of which is TetraBOOST – which is lead based so we are back where we started from!!

Interestingly, the motorsport use of leaded fuel is minute. From Canadian figures, it appears that 0.01% of all fuel sold is leaded and of that small percentage, 98.5% is for aviation use. The remaining 1.5% (of 0.01%) is used in a number of areas such as hydroplane and jet boating, offroading, some farm use, dirt track racing, drag racing and historic and classic racing.

Jim Barclay and I are going to the forum to represent our section of historic racing and we will be putting a strong case to maintain leaded fuel for our historic cars.