SEP 08th 2015

Top 5: Racing saloon cars at Revival

The ever popular St Mary’s Trophy switches to the 1960s era this year, which means the little-versus-large battle of Minis going up against Jaguars and Ford Galaxies will be back on. Lotus Cortinas will also make their presence felt.

Revival 2015 Entry List promo

There are two St Mary’s races – one for professional drivers and one for ‘gentlemen’. The pro race has more British Touring Car Championship winners competing than this year’s BTCC; it’s going to be a spectacle. Do you agree with our Top Five rundown of saloon car racers?

5) Isuzu Bellet

The St Mary’s Trophy always features one or two notable wildcard entries, and this year’s is the Isuzu Bellet. Produced from 1963 to 1973, the Bellet replaced the Isuzu Minx, which was a Hillman built under licence by the Japanese firm. A two-door GT Type-R was introduced in 1968, but the one we have coming to Goodwood is a four-door that started life in Australia – as many of them did. Mark Bevingdon’s example will add variety to this year’s grid, being driven by the owner in the gentlemen race and David Brabham in the pro driver’s race.

isuzu-bellet-goodwood Revival

4) Alfa Romeo 1600 GTA

Weight-saving aluminium panels, a twin-spark cylinder head and 45mm carburettors made the Alfa Romeo 1600 GTA a formidable force in 1960s touring car racing. Both in mainland Europe and in the UK, the GTA was a race winner – and looked absolutely gorgeous as it went about it. Frank Stippler will be at the wheel of the sole GTA in the pro race, with Alex Furiani taking the controls in the gentlemen race.

alfa-romeo-1600-gta-goodwood Revival

3) Ford Galaxie 500

Renowned Mustang specialist Bill Shepherd will bring his monstrous 7.0-litre Ford Galaxie to do battle in the St Mary’s Trophy, sharing the car with none other than Jochen Mass. He’s no stranger to the car, having raced it in 2013. He claimed a podium place behind Stippler in the aforementioned GTA and Tom Kristensen who took the top spot in another Galaxie 500. It’s not the only Galaxie on the entry list: Marino Franchitti will be at the wheel of the second big Ford. Watching them hustle around Goodwood’s fast corner promises to be a great spectacle.

ford-galaxie Revival

2) Mini Cooper S

The giant-slaying Mini Cooper S is represented in both Austin and Morris guises at Revival this year, with no fewer than seven on the grid. The small, front-wheel-drive car is known for its ability to stick with much more powerful machinery, even on the fast curves at Goodwood. Cooper S pedallers this year include the likes of Monte Carlo veteran Rauno Aaltonen, BTCC champion Jason Plato and multiple Le Mans-winner Emanuele Pirro. None of them will give an inch.

mini-cooper-goodwood Revival

1) Lotus Cortina

Unlike the later Mk2 Lotus Cortinas, which were built in Dagenham, all the Mk1 cars were given the Lotus treatment at the sport car maker’s Cheshunt factory. They received a Lotus twin-cam engine, extensive suspension upgrades and, of course, the green stripe and Lotus badging. The upgrades were enough to take Ford where it wanted to be – at the sharp end of saloon car racing, which is exactly where it is today in historic racing. Take a look at this roll call of drivers in Lotus Cortinas in this year’s St Mary’s Trophy: Steve Soper, Gordon Shedden, Mark Blundell, Andrew Jordan, David Richards, Mike Jordan and Matt Neal. We can’t wait for the red lights to go out…

lotus-cortina-goodwood Revival

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