OldRacingCars.com

Formula Atlantic Labatts Championship Series Race

Montréal, 24 Sep 1978

ResultsLapsTime/Speed
1 Jeff Wood March 78B - Ford BDN Willis
#20 Great Plains Racing (see note 1)
35 1h 02m 08.582s
94.44 mph
2 Price Cobb March 78B - Ford BDN Morris
#22 Ecurie Canada
35
3 Howdy Holmes March 78B [11] - Ford BDN Race Shop
#8 Doug Shierson Racing
35
4 Bertil Roos Ralt RT1/78 - Ford BDN Jennings
#24 AME Racing
35
5 Danny Sullivan March 78B - Ford BDN Stimola
#34 Bluebonnet Foods/Quaker State
34
6 Skeeter McKitterick Ralt RT1/78 [136] - Ford BDN Jennings
#12 AME Racing
34
7 Ken Duclos Ralt RT1/78 [119] - Ford BDN Duclos
#84
34
8 Tom Gloy Chevron B45 [45-78-03] - Ford BDN
#11 Shea Racing (see note 2)
34
9 Bobby Brown March 78B [18] - Ford BDN
#79 Automatic Radio
34
10 Chris Gleason Ralt RT1/78 - Ford BDN Morris
#75 Whalley BMW Sales
34
11 John Mortensen March 78B [20?] - Ford BDN Race Shop
#9 Doug Shierson Racing
34
12 Robert J. Nelkin March 78B [8] - Ford BDN Stimola
#67 Hunter Mountain (see note 3)
34
13 Rick Koehler Excalibur EE2B [March 77B] - Ford BDN Cosworth
#51 Brook Stevens (see note 4)
34
14 Giovanni Distasio March 77B - Ford BDN Jennings
#46 Bluebonnet Foods/Quaker State
(see note 5)
33
15 Rick Bell Ralt RT1/78 [127] - Ford BDN Cosworth
#78
33
16 Joe Sposato March 77B [5] - Ford BDN Stimola
#28 CB Sports (see note 6)
30
17 Gilles Léger Ralt RT1/77 [79] - Ford BDN Cosworth
#72 (see note 7)
33
18 Jon Norman March 76B [3] - Ford BDN Cosworth
#58 Norman Racing (see note 8)
32
19 Charles Crotts March - Ford BDN
#65 (see note 9)
32
20 Dale Lang March 78B [12] - Ford BDN
#99
32
21 Keke Rosberg Chevron B39 [39-77-06?] - Ford BDN Smith
#4 Excita/Fred Opert Racing (see note 10)
30
22 Richard Spenard Chevron B45 [45-78-04] - Ford BDN Smith
#5 Ramses/Fred Opert Racing (see note 11)
29 Engine
23 Mike Follett Ralt RT1/78 [128] - Ford BDN Cosworth
#21
26 Spun
24 Bill Brack March 78B [15] - Ford BDN Nicholson
#7 Doug Shierson Racing
24 Engine
25 Ralph Manaker March 76B [8?] - Ford BDN Cosworth
#63 RM Racing (see note 12)
17 Spun
26 Bobby Rahal Ralt RT1/78 [109] - Ford BDN Willis
#2 Pierre's Motor Racing (see note 13)
11 Fuel pump
27 Kevin Cogan Ralt RT1 - Ford BDN Willis
#88 Ralt American
9 Accident
28 Bob Earl Chevron B39 [39-77-12?] - Ford BDN Smith
#6 Sheik/Fred Opert Racing (see note 14)
9 Engine
29 Jean-Pierre Alamy March 78B [7] - Ford BDN Hine
#13
7 Engine
30 Chip Mead Ralt RT1/78 [106] - Ford BDN Willis
#31 Pierre's Motor Racing
4 Engine
31 Dan Marvin March 76B - Ford BDN Cosworth
#59 Norman Racing (see note 15)
2 Accident
DNS Pierre Gadoury Chevron B29 [29-75-08] - Ford BDN
#91 (see note 16)
Did not start

All cars are 1.6-litre F/Atl unless noted.

Qualifying
1 Price Cobb (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B - Ford BDN Morris 1.45.068
2 Kevin Cogan (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1 - Ford BDN Willis 1.45.22
3 Bobby Rahal (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/78 [109] - Ford BDN Willis 1.45.57
4 Danny Sullivan (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B - Ford BDN Stimola 1.45.78
5 Jeff Wood (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B - Ford BDN Willis 1.45.88
6 Howdy Holmes (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B [11] - Ford BDN Race Shop
7 Dan Marvin (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 76B - Ford BDN Cosworth
8 Bill Brack (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B [15] - Ford BDN Nicholson
9 Keke Rosberg (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Chevron B39 [39-77-06?] - Ford BDN Smith
10 Ken Duclos (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/78 [119] - Ford BDN Duclos
11 Bertil Roos (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/78 - Ford BDN Jennings
12 Chip Mead (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/78 [106] - Ford BDN Willis
13 John Mortensen (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B [20?] - Ford BDN Race Shop
14 Bobby Brown (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B [18] - Ford BDN
15 Bob Earl (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Chevron B39 [39-77-12?] - Ford BDN Smith
16 Robert J. Nelkin (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B [8] - Ford BDN Stimola
17 Richard Spenard (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Chevron B45 [45-78-04] - Ford BDN Smith
18 Jon Norman (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 76B [3] - Ford BDN Cosworth
19 Chris Gleason (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/78 - Ford BDN Morris
20 Rick Bell (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/78 [127] - Ford BDN Cosworth
21 Mike Follett (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/78 [128] - Ford BDN Cosworth
22 Joe Sposato (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 77B [5] - Ford BDN Stimola
23 Rick Koehler (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Excalibur EE2B [March 77B] - Ford BDN Cosworth
24 Skeeter McKitterick (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/78 [136] - Ford BDN Jennings
25 Gilles Léger (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1/77 [79] - Ford BDN Cosworth
26 Jean-Pierre Alamy (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B [7] - Ford BDN Hine
27 Giovanni Distasio (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 77B - Ford BDN Jennings
28 Ralph Manaker (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 76B [8?] - Ford BDN Cosworth
29 Charles Crotts (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March - Ford BDN
31 Dale Lang (F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 78B [12] - Ford BDN
32 Tom Gloy (F/Atl) 1.6-litre Chevron B45 [45-78-03] - Ford BDN No time

Notes on the cars:

  1. March 78B (Jeff Wood): Jeff Wood (Studio City, CA) had a pair of March 78Bs in 1978, entered by Great Plains Racing in Formula Atlantic in 1978 and he then raced one of them in New Zealand in December 1978 and January 1979. He started the 1979 season with one of the 78Bs at Long Beach, and then had a new 79B at either the second or third race. One of the 78Bs was sold to Greg Sun who ran it (as a 78-79B) in SCCA events in 1979. It was then acquired by Bob Schader and raced on through 1980 and early 1981, including appearances at the Long Beach and Road America Pro races in 1980 and at Long Beach again in 1981. Schader then moved into FSV and the 78B was sold to Dorsey Schroeder (Manchester, MO) and used extensively in SCCA in 1981 and 1982.
  2. Chevron B45 [45-78-03] (Tom Gloy): New to Rick Shea Racing and in North American Formula Atlantic in 1978, with backing from Jethro Tull. Raced by Shea at the first round, and by Marcel Talbot, Skeeter McKitterick, Bob Earl and Tom Gloy at later races, Retained by Shea for 1979 and raced by Mark McCaig (Calgary, Alberta) in the Pro series. To Colin Tuckey (Calgary, Alberta) for 1980, and entered in the Pro series by FBM Racing. Retained by Tuckey for 1981. Later raced by David Farmer (Niagra Falls, Ontario) in 1983. The car ended up with another Chevron in a museum in Canada, until 1989, when they were spotted by Peter Hemming. The B45 was acquired by Ed Swart in February 1993, and prepared for historic racing. He raced the B45 from October 1993 with a BDA engine in the Formula Atlantic class, and after about five years ran it with a 2-litre BDG engine in F2 classes.
  3. March 78B [8] (Robert J. Nelkin): New to RJ Nelkin (Roslyn, NY/Woodbury, NY) for the Labatts Formula Atlantic series and SCCA Nationals in 1978. Despite reports that Nalkin raced it at Palm Beach in February and had it as a spare car at Long Beach in April, its SCCA number indicates that it was first used at Charlette's Super-National in mid-April. Nelkin finished 16th in the Labatts series and finished fifth in NEDiv, scoring 22 points. Chris Townsend advises that the car went to Paul Corazzo (Wethersfield, CT) for 1979, so would be the March he raced in SCCA Nationals in 1979 and is presumably the "79B" he had as late as 1987. The car was next seen in January 2004 when it was advertised from Virginia, having been raced in US historic racing in 1996. The car was acquired by Daryl Taylor and returned to the UK, but at some point was involved in a workshop fire and the tub was destroyed. A new tub was fabricated, and the car was raced by Taylor raced a March 78B in HSCC events from 2007 to 2014, during which time it was also driven by Bruce Fullerton, Simon Taylor, Ashley Taylor, Martin Trott and Robert Wainwright. In 2021, it was sold to Martin Wood (Faversham, Kent), and for the 2022 season, he converted it to 782 F2 specification with a BMW engine.
  4. Excalibur EE2B [March 77B] (Rick Koehler): Rick Koehler (Milwaukee, WI) raced an Excalibur EE2B in Formula Atlantic in 1978, with sponsorship from Brooks Stevens. The car was essentially a March 77B and was described as ex-Shierson and ex-Brack in adverts in late 1978 and 1979. It was leased to Joe Castellano for the Long Beach race in April 1979, and then sat unused until August 1980 when it was sold to David Locke (Cambridge City, IN). Locke fitted the car with 79B bodywork and Bobsy fenders so that it could be used in Can-Am racing, using an 1850cc Hart BDA engine and Hewland FT200 gearbox. In October 1981, Koehler ordered a Kevlar Cicale body for the car, and used it in this form in 1982 and 1983, but without success. He acquired a Hart 420R engine from Jim Trueman for 1984 and raced the car in Can-Am and then CAT until 1987. Chris Townsend advises that it was sold to Lee Johnson in Colorado in April 1988, and was still with Johnson in 2012.
  5. March 77B (Giovanni Distasio): To Ecurie Canada for Richard Spenard to drive in the Labatts Formula Atlantic series in 1977, supported by Direct Film. The car was white, and ran as #96. The two Ecurie Canada cars, both now described as "ex-Villeneuve", went to Bertil Roos and Chris Gleason for 1978. Roos and Gleason are understood to have run together, and it is believed that Gleason had Spenard's usual car. After three races, Gleason acquired a new 1978 Ralt RT1, and the only other time the 77B was used was at Hamilton in August. Then sold to Giovanni Distasio (Edgewater, NJ) to replace his March 75B, and raced by him at Trois-Rivières and Montréal in September. Retained for 1979. Advertised by DiStasio in January 1980. Subsequent history unknown.
  6. March 77B [5] (Joe Sposato): New to Joe Sposato and used in SCCA Nationals in 1977. Retained for Pro Formula Atlantic for first half of 1978, then sold to Charles Crotts (High Point, NC) for remainder of 1978. Believed to be the car retained by Crotts and run in SCCA events up to 1985.
  7. Ralt RT1/77 [79] (Gilles Léger): New to Gilles Léger (Lachute, Quebec), first appearing at Trois-Rivières in September 1977. Raced by Léger mainly in the Canadian rounds of the Labatts Formula Atlantic Championship in 1978. Then used as a rental car by Léger for Marc Dancose to race at Quebec in June 1979 and Monique Proulx at Montréal in September. Sold to Bob Hoff (Long Beach, CA) for 1980, when it was run for him in the North American Formula Atlantic series by Gas Saleen Racing. CT
  8. March 76B [3] (Jon Norman): Tom Pumpelly (McLean, VA) raced a yellow #34 March 76B, entered by National Tire Wholesale. The only yellow 76B shown in March records was chassis 76B-3. Pumpelly raced the car until it was damaged in a collision with Bancroft at Mosport Park in August, after which it was acquired by Ecurie Canada whose regular driver Gilles Villeneuve had damaged both his cars. It is therefore believed to be the car driven by Villeneuve to win at Trois-Rivières and Road Atlanta in September but this is by no means certain. Then bought by John Lane who rented it back to Pumpelly for the SCCA Run-Offs at Road Atlanta, where Pumpelly crashed it again. Sold to John Norman (Oakland, CA) who raced it as part of a two-car team with Dan Marvin in 1977 and 1978. Norman then sold the car but later bought it back and restored it to Villeneuve's livery.
  9. March (Charles Crotts): Charles Crotts (High Point, NC) raced a March in a North Carolina Region SCCA National at North Carolina Motor Speedway in June 1978. This is too early to be the ex-Joe Sposato March 77B that he raced later in 1978, so the identity of this car is currently unknown.
  10. Chevron B39 [39-77-06?] (Keke Rosberg): New to Fred Opert Racing and raced in the Labatts Formula Atlantic Championship. Believed to be the car raced by Francisco Romero at the opening round. Believed to be the car intended for Didier Pironi at St-Félicien in August, but crashed in practice. Repaired and entered for Patrick Depailler at Trois-Rivières and Québec City as the team's #2 car. Retained by Fred Opert Racing for the 1978 New Zealand series, where it was the team's #2 entry raced by Bobby Rahal. Then raced by Jim Crawley in two North American races in early 1978. It is then likely to be one of two B39s retained by the Opert team later in 1978, and as such may be the car raced by Rosberg at the final race of the season. Opert again had two B39s for the 1979 season, one in red bodywork and one in orange. He advertised both these cars in December 1979, one in "original red gelcoat" and one "repainted orange", describing them as ex-Rosberg and ex-Rahal cars. Rahal only drove 77-06, and as that was originally blue, it cannot have been the "original red gelcoat" car in the advert so must have been the orange car. Subsequent history unknown, but in December 2005 "Joe" from Northern New Jersey was seeking information about chassis "39-77-06". He said he had contacted Fred Opert who had told him that it had been used by Rosberg in New Zealand, and by Jacques Lafitte, Patrick Depailler and James Crawley in the Canadian series. It had orange bodywork, again indicating that it had been Tolama's orange car. "Joe" advertised it for sale on the Autosport Forum in January 2006. A restoration then began that included a new monocoque by Prince Race Cars and the car was advertised on race-cars.com in dark blue bodywork. It was next seen when restored by The Progress Group (Placentia, CA) in 2011/12 with pale blue B39 bodywork and white Excita signwriting, and raced by Chris Cord at the Monterey Historics in 2013.
  11. Chevron B45 [45-78-04] (Richard Spenard): New to Fred Opert Racing for North American Formula Atlantic as a second car. Used as a spare by Keke Rosberg and as his race car at Lime Rock. Also raced by Eje Elgh and by Arturo Merzario at Trois-Rivières. Raced by Rosberg at Macau in November 1978. Advertised by Opert from ATS Engineering, where he had moved to become team manager, in March 1979 as a lightweight B45 with 1979 rear suspension and F2 fuel tanks. Then sold to Mike Peers and entered in the revived British series for Jim Crawford in 1979, winning five races and finishing second in the championship. Fitted with a BDX engine for 1980 and run by Plygrange Racing for Crawford in the F2 class of the Aurora series. Stayed with Plygrange for 1981 when raced by Vin Malkie (Northwich, Cheshire) in libre racing. Reappeared in 1983 when raced by Duncan Gray in the British Formula Atlantic series. It was entered by Peers himself in libre in 1984. Then to Steve Raine for Sprints, co-driven by Robin Boucher, and then hired to Bob Fearnley's RK Racing for Tiff Needell to drive in a pair of races in India in early 1985. Then reportedly to Stuart Ridge for 1986. To John Lloyd then to Simon Hadfield (Shepshed, Leicestershire) but damaged in an accident at Mallory Park. Restored with original Excita condoms bodywork and sold in 1998 to Jeff Wright, a Scotsman then living in Canada. Still with Wright (Wilmington, NC) in 2014 and raced regularly in vintage racing. By 2019, the car had moved to Scotland and was owned by George Coghill (Halkirk, Highland) and was prepared by Steve Worrad for sprints.
  12. March 76B [8?] (Ralph Manaker): Doug Shierson Racing ran a red March 76B for Dale Lang (Wilton, CT) in 1976. The only red 76B in March build records was 76B-8, suggesting this was Lang's car. Lang retained this car for 1977 and then sold it to Ralph Manaker (Erieville, NY) who raced it in 1978. Advertised by Manaker as a 76-77B in October 1978.
  13. Ralt RT1/78 [109] (Bobby Rahal): New to Pierre Phillips for Bobby Rahal to race in North American Formula Atlantic in 1978, supported by James Morgan. Sold to Ken Dunn in June 1979 and retained by him for the 1980 and 1981 seasons. CT
  14. Chevron B39 [39-77-12?] (Bob Earl): New to Fred Opert Racing and raced in the Labatts Formula Atlantic Championship. This car was new for Keke Rosberg to race at Trois-Rivières in September 1977. It was retained by Opert for 1978, and raced by Eje Elgh at the opening two rounds as his #5 Sheik Condoms entry before his new Chevron B45 was available. The B39 is then thought to be the #5 car raced by Divina Galica at Hamilton in August 1978. As Opert's other B39s all seem to have been sold off, this is probably the #6 Opert entry for Riccardo Patrese at Trois-Rivières, the #4 Excita B39 driven by Keke Rosberg at Montréal on 24 September, and then later the pink #5 Chevron raced by Marco Tolama for Opert at Road America in July 1979 after preferring it to his regular B45 and Opert's new March 79B. Then probably the #4 entry for Doug Titus at Montréal later that season, where he did not start. Subsequent history unknown, but this is likely to be the red "ex-Rosberg" B39 advertised by Opert in December 1979 and in February 1982.
  15. March 76B (Dan Marvin): Dan Marvin (El Sobrante, CA) drove a #59 March 76B in 1977 as part of Jon Norman's Boxtrom-Berglen Norman Racing team. The car was built up using a tub that Norman had fabricated himself, using an unknown number of parts of unknown origin. It was, in effect, a new car. Marvin raced the car in both Pro Formula Atlantic and in SCCA Nationals in 1977 and 1978.
  16. Chevron B29 [29-75-08] (Pierre Gadoury): Unknown in 1975, 1976 and 1977, but almost certainly a Fred Opert Racing car in 1975. To Pierre Gadoury (Saint-Lambert, Quebec) for 1978 but failed to start at its two appearances, at Trois-Rivières and Montréal. It went to Frank Vella (Detroit, Michigan) for 1979, when it was still in Opert blue and with Valvoline decals on the side. Then to Andy Falbo (Detroit, MI) in 1980. Falbo sold it to somebody in Florida who was planning to fit a Mazda engine. Later acquired as a project via race-cars.com in 2004 by Bill Murray (Durham) and brought back to the UK. After Murray died in 2013, the car passed to his son-in-law David Beatty.

Sources

The identification of individual cars in these results is based on the material presented elsewhere in this site and may in some cases contradict the organisers' original results.

North American Formula Atlantic race results have been compiled by Chris Townsend based on material in Formula and On Track, information drawn from Canadian newspapers and results sheets where available.

All comments, clarifications, corrections and additions are most welcome. Please email Allen (allen@oldracingcars.com) if you can help in any way with our research.