was good to see another college team out. Northbook College, based
near Worthing, were running an unusual 1996 Van Diemen 2 litre Formula
Renault when the dominant chassis, run by the Swansea and Wiltshire
teams, not to mention Mark Smith, is of course a Tatuus. I spoke
to dave Tucker, who I assume is their tutor. Their Motorsports degree
is awarded through Brighton University. They were intending to do
the 750MC Single Seater Championship, but unfortunately that didn't
get off the ground after Snetterton, so we hope we'll see them again.
They're pleased to be racing in a championship where some development
is allowed – they've been comparing the practical outcome
of aerodynamic and damper settings with the theoretical.
The car is driven by Shane Kelly, 2006 Club F3 champion, and surprisingly
a veteran of Mono – he ran in a Vauxhall Lotus in aroudn 2000/2001
with Richard Purcell's Top Marx team. He also had an interesting
story to tell...
was another newcomer to Mono. He's doing an Aeronautical Science
degree at Bristol and hopes to join a race team in due course. Since
most of them regard practical experience as important, he's getting
it by racing his Mygale. He had been doing Formula 4 (the original
750MC version) but as we know, that stopped so he's joined us. He
commented that he'd tested last week to get used to Donington, and
that was his third time in the car, not counting an early season
Silverstone when they were chipping ice away before the cars were
let out. James told us that Linton Stutely had been of great assistance,
in particular in making sure the car was user friendly. James is
another we hope to welcome again.
James's father is Ian Rimmer who several of those racing at Donington
remembered from the 1975-1982 period.
Shane played the part of Hans Stuck (or Hans-Joachim Stuck to
be pedantic) in the film Rush. This involved driving a March 761
DFV in the Nurburgring pitlane. He was chosen for this because he
had tested the car for the WDK team from Stockbridge. “The
761 is a nice car to drive”, he told us, “I suppose
that as it was a customer car March had to make it as friendly as
possible.” There were 3 days of filming for a 30 second sequence
in the film. Out of interest, Shane had heard that the “normal”
ratio is 1 minute from 1 day, which compares with 3 minutes per
day for a less blockbusting British independent film and the same
3:1 for a quality TV drama.
That ratio was confirmed by Kevan McLurg, whose Rush connection
was that he supplied 3 Formula Vauxhall Lotus's, which were converted
by WDK to quick change McLaren Hesketh and Ligier bodies for filming.
They could, apparently, be switched overnight by change of bodywork
to represent the different marques. Kevan also tells us that the
BRM in the picture was scratch built and had a V8 Rover, and that
the Ferraris were Formula Novis Mygales, converted from monoshock
to twin damper. Naturally, one was destroyed in the (plot spoiler)
Nurbugring accident, and Shane told me 2 of the FVL's were destroyed,
I would guess in the same accident with one of them recycled for
the horrific Cevert aftermath.
Having seen the trailer where they use what looks like the sort
of CGI a 12 year old could do on his ipad, I was a bit put off but
was persuaded by Steven Griffin's review, and I'm glad I was. The
trailer shows the only piece of poor CGI in the film. In fact there's
a lot of un-noticed CGI when some poor devil had to paint out the
I've been told by 2 of my contacts that although the film shows
Hunt and Lauda meeting at Crystal Palace, they didn't meet until
a lot later, in F2. Incidentally, both Kevan and an occassional
Startline contributor confirmed that Steven's observation on Cosworth
cam covers was correct – it started in 1978 at Williams's
request because Saudia disapproved of Ford's relations with Israel.
To finish on a very tenuous Mono connection, it was good to see
Mono's favourite supplier of the black bits, Paul Smith and BMTR,
got a specific mention in the closing credits. MSV did too, but
with Cadwell and Brands playing starring roles, you would expect
that. Sit through the titles, it's worth it.
99 years between them.....
Peter Venn, Francis Phillips and David Cox all joined the club
in 1981, so there's 33 seasons' experience in each of them, which
is a bit surprising when you see them. Francis was always known
as being from Kidderminster, but has now retired and moved to Cornwall,
where there isn't much in the way of race circuits (Davidstow opened
in 1952 and closed in 1955). However, he has been karting at St
Eval and was pleased to be within 4 seconds of James Toseland's
And if anybody doesn't believe they were all around in 1981, here
a link to prove it: http://www.startline.org.uk/SLOL28/combe.htm