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Alan Jones in the March 74B at Brands Hatch in July 1974.Copyright Gerald Swan 2007.  Used with permission.

British Formula Atlantic 1974

There were again two series in 1974, one backed by John Player and the other by Southern Organs. The John Player series fell to John Nicholson and the Lyncar for the second season but it was a close-run thing with five other drivers winning two or more rounds. The ten-round Southern Organs series was won in dramatic fashion by Jim Crawford, the find of the season, but only after his luck swung in the closing races. His fine performances in his friend Steve Choularton's second March 73B had led to a testing contract with the Lotus F1 team, but Choularton was having to fund both cars from his own pocket, and when Crawford wrecked his car at Brands Hatch at the end of September, Choularton could not afford to go on. Fred Opert came to Crawford's rescue with the offer of a Chevron B27, and he battled with series-leader Alan Jones (in Harry Stiller's March 74B) at the penultimate round, snatching the win after Jones had a puncture on the last lap. More drama followed at the double-points final round, where Jones again led, and Crawford again caught him - this time Jones' gear-linkage failed in the closing moments, and Crawford sped past to take the win and the title.

Of the leading contenders, Jones would become World Champion and Crawford, Nicholson and fellow race-winners Tony Brise and David Morgan would all make it into F1 within a year.

March was again the dominant marque with the March 74B and 73B each accounting for nearly a quarter of the grid. The Lyncar was the next most successful in terms of points scored followed by the Brabham BT40, Chevron B25, Modus M1, Chevron B27 and the Scott. A remarkable 21 constructors started at least one race during 1974.

The races

10 Mar 1974 > Mallory Park (John Player round 1)

17 Mar 1974 > Brands Hatch (John Player round 2)

31 Mar 1974 > Silverstone (Southern Organs round 1)

07 Apr 1974 > Silverstone (John Player round 3)

14 Apr 1974 > Snetterton (John Player round 4)

27 Apr 1974 > Oulton Park (Southern Organs round 2)

05 May 1974 > Oulton Park (John Player round 5)

12 May 1974 > Silverstone (John Player round 6)

27 May 1974 > Oulton Park (John Player round 7)

23 Jun 1974 > Mallory Park (John Player round 8)

30 Jun 1974 > Silverstone (Southern Organs round 3)

07 Jul 1974 > Thruxton (Southern Organs round 4)

20 Jul 1974 > Brands Hatch (John Player round 9)

28 Jul 1974 > Silverstone (Southern Organs round 5)

11 Aug 1974 > Mallory Park (Southern Organs round 6)

25 Aug 1974 > Mallory Park (John Player round 10)

07 Sep 1974 > Phoenix Park (John Player round 11)

15 Sep 1974 > Mondello Park (John Player round 12)

29 Sep 1974 > Brands Hatch (John Player round 13)

05 Oct 1974 > Oulton Park (John Player round 14)

13 Oct 1974 > Mallory Park (Southern Organs round 7)

19 Oct 1974 > Brands Hatch (non-championship)

20 Oct 1974 > Brands Hatch (Southern Organs round 8)

27 Oct 1974 > Snetterton (Southern Organs round 9)

03 Nov 1974 > Brands Hatch (Southern Organs round 10)

16 Nov 1974 > Thruxton (non-championship)

1974 John Player British Formula Atlantic Championship table

1John NicholsonLyncar 005 - Ford BDA Nicholson132 pts2 wins
2Jim CrawfordMarch 73B - Ford BDA Hart127 pts2 wins
3Tony BriseMarch 733 - Ford BDA Holbay
Modus M1 - Ford BDA Nicholson
101 pts3 wins
4Alan JonesMarch 712M/722 - Ford BDA Close
March 74B - Ford BDA Richardson
97 pts3 wins
5David MorganChevron B25 - Ford BDA Nicholson85 pts2 wins
6Ray MallockEnsign LNFB/74 - Ford BDA Swindon
Brabham BT40 - Ford BDA Swindon
66 pts 
7Cyd WilliamsBrabham BT40 - Ford BDA Eden55 pts 
8Stephen ChoulartonMarch 73B - Ford BDA Hart53 pts 
9Richard ScottScott - Ford BDA Richardson52 pts2 wins
10Geoff FriswellMarch 73B - Ford BDA Hart50 pts 

Previous: the 1973 season

Next: the 1975 season

This series ran over 14 races using a 20-15-12 points system. Nicholson only got two wins and two second places but the points system narrowly favoured his consistent top-six finishing over the two wins, three seconds and four retirements of Crawford; the three wins and four non-starts of Brise; or the three wins and poor attendance record of Jones. Richard Scott also won two races at the start of the season in his Scott F2.

Points table from the John Player Motorsport Yearbook 1975 p297.

1974 Southern Organs British Formula Atlantic Championship table

1Jim CrawfordMarch 73B - Ford BDA Hart
Chevron B27 [27-74-06] - Ford BDA Hart
43 pts3 wins
2Alan JonesMarch 74B - Ford BDA Richardson41 pts1 win
3Ray MallockEnsign LNFB/74 - Ford BDA Swindon
Brabham BT40 - Ford BDA Swindon
38 pts1 win
4=David MorganChevron B25 - Ford BDA Nicholson27 pts1 win
4=John NicholsonLyncar 005 - Ford BDA Nicholson27 pts2 wins
6Ted WentzMarch 74B - Ford BDA Swindon26 pts1 win
7Geoff FriswellMarch 73B - Ford BDA Hart24 pts1 win
8=Bev BondMarch 74B - Ford BDA LEC9 pts 
8=Peter WardleSurtees TS15 - Ford BDA Smith9 pts 
10=Stephen ChoulartonMarch 73B - Ford BDA Hart5 pts 
10Matt SpitzleyMarch 733/74B - Ford BDA Hart5 pts 

Previous: the 1973 season

Next: the 1975 season

This 'club racing' series used a 9-6-4 system with double points awarded at the last round. The points table used here is constructed from race results.

Two non-championship races were won by Morgan and Steve Choularton (March 73B).