Aurora AFX British F1 Championship Round
Snetterton, 20 May 1979
|1||Rupert Keegan||Arrows A1  - Cosworth DFV V8
#16 C. W. Clowes Racing
|2||Giacomo Agostini||Williams FW06  - Cosworth DFV V8
#9 Team Agostini
|3||Emilio de Villota||Lotus 78 [1 JPS15] - Cosworth DFV V8
#3 Madom F1 Team (see note 1)
|4||Bernard de Dryver||Fittipaldi F5A  - Cosworth DFV V8
#5 RAM Racing
|5||John Cooper||Ensign N177 [MN09] - Cosworth DFV V8
#8 John Cooper (see note 2)
|6||Norman Dickson||(F2) 2-litre March 792  - Hart 420R
#30 Dicksons of Perth (see note 3)
|7||Gordon Smiley||McLaren M23  - Cosworth DFV V8
#2 Melchester Racing
|8||Adrian Russell||(F2) 2-litre March 782  - Hart 420R
#20 Adrian Russell (see note 4)
|9||Brian Robinson||(F2) 2-litre Chevron B42 [42-78-17] - Hart 420R
#19 A. G. Dean (Racing)
|10||Kim Mather||(F2) 2-litre March 772P [U2] - BMW M12/7
#15 Pontin Racing (see note 5)
|R||David Kennedy||Wolf [WR4] - Cosworth DFV V8
#11 Theodore Racing
|40||Running, not classified|
|R||Ray Mallock||Chevron B41 [41-79-01] - Cosworth DFV V8
#6 Graham Eden Racing
|R||Patrick Neve||(F2) 2-litre Pilbeam MP42  - Hart 420R
#26 Onyx race Engineering
|32||Rear wheel spindle|
|R||Val Musetti||March 781  - Cosworth DFV V8
#7 Val Musetti
|R||Guy Edwards||Fittipaldi F5A  - Cosworth DFV V8
#4 RAM Racing
|R||Desiré Wilson||Tyrrell 008  - Cosworth DFV V8
#1 Melchester Racing (see note 6)
|R||Gianfranco Brancatelli||(F2) 2-litre March 772P [U1] - Hart 420R
#31 Dicksons of Perth (see note 7)
|DNS||Hervé Regout||(F2) 2-litre Chevron B42 [42-78-09] - Hart 420R
#25 RAM Racing
|Did not start
(DNS: Accident in practice)
|DNS||Richard Jones||Ensign N174 [MN02] - Cosworth DFV V8
#33 Smith & Jones
|Did not start
(DNS: Accident in practice)
All cars are 3-litre F1 unless noted.
|1||Guy Edwards||(F1) 3-litre Fittipaldi F5A  - Cosworth DFV V8||0:57.04|
|2||David Kennedy||(F1) 3-litre Wolf [WR4] - Cosworth DFV V8||0:57.43|
|3||Emilio de Villota||(F1) 3-litre Lotus 78 [1 JPS15] - Cosworth DFV V8||0:57.97|
|4||Giacomo Agostini||(F1) 3-litre Williams FW06  - Cosworth DFV V8||0:58.08|
|5||Rupert Keegan||(F1) 3-litre Arrows A1  - Cosworth DFV V8||0:58.21|
|6||Bernard de Dryver||(F1) 3-litre Fittipaldi F5A  - Cosworth DFV V8||0:58.25|
|7||Desiré Wilson||(F1) 3-litre Tyrrell 008  - Cosworth DFV V8||0:58.50|
|8||Norman Dickson||(F2) 2-litre March 792  - Hart 420R||0:59.22|
|9||Gianfranco Brancatelli||(F2) 2-litre March 772P [U1] - Hart 420R||0:59.45|
|10||John Cooper||(F1) 3-litre Ensign N177 [MN09] - Cosworth DFV V8||0:59.86|
|11||Gordon Smiley||(F1) 3-litre McLaren M23  - Cosworth DFV V8||1:00.04|
|12||Ray Mallock||(F1) 3-litre Chevron B41 [41-79-01] - Cosworth DFV V8||1:00.26|
|15||Kim Mather||(F2) 2-litre March 772P [U2] - BMW M12/7||1:00.32|
|15||Val Musetti||(F1) 3-litre March 781  - Cosworth DFV V8||1:00.83|
|16||Hervé Regout *||(F2) 2-litre Chevron B42 [42-78-09] - Hart 420R||1:01.29|
|16||Patrick Neve||(F2) 2-litre Pilbeam MP42  - Hart 420R||1:00.43|
|17||Adrian Russell||(F2) 2-litre March 782  - Hart 420R||1:02.29|
|18||Richard Jones *||(F1) 3-litre Ensign N174 [MN02] - Cosworth DFV V8||1:02.41|
|19||Brian Robinson||(F2) 2-litre Chevron B42 [42-78-17] - Hart 420R||1:02.49|
|* Did not start|
Notes on the cars:
- Lotus 78 [1 JPS15] (Emilio de Villota): After being used by Gunnar Nilsson and Mario Andretti in the first few races of 1977, Lotus 78-1 became the spare car and was then retired mid-season. It was sold to Hector Rebaque for 1978, but became his spare car after he acquired 78-4. It was then sold to Emilio De Villota for Aurora British F1 in 1979, where it was a regular race winner. Norman Dickson bought it for 1980, again for Aurora, and it was sold to Lotus collector Bill Friend at the end of 1981. It was raced by Bill's nephew Roger Friend in HSCC racing. It was sold to Switzerland in 1988, then moved to Italy in 1998. In early 2018, it moved again, to a major collector.
- Ensign N177 [MN09] (John Cooper): Mario Deliotti Racing ran Ensign N175 MN04, updated to 1977 specification, in Aurora British F1 in 1978. Towards the end of that season, a new N177 was built for the team, bearing chassis number MN09, although that number would confusingly be used on Ensign's 1979 N179 as well. The N177 was raced by Val Musetti in BF1, then by Geoff Lees in the Australian Rothmans series in 1979. It then remained unraced through four seasons before Ken Moore entered it for Mike Littlewood in the 1983 British Open. When this series was cancelled, Moore ran it in HSCC and libre races for Littlewood in 1983 and 1984. The next two owners did little with it until it returned to HSCC racing in 1992. Five subsequent owners have also used it in TGP and then in Masters F1.
- March 792  (Norman Dickson): New to Norman Dickson (Perth, Scotland) and raced in the F2 section of the 1979 British F1 series, prepared by Colin Bennett. Due to be raced by Angelo Piccione at the Misano in August but he was too slow in testing. Sold to Paul Gibson in October 1979 and used mainly in libre racing at Croft but also appeared in rounds of the British series at Thruxton and Monza. Sold to Bob Leckie (Aberdeen, Scotland) for libre racing in 1981 but sold on in mid-season to John Bothamley who used it in the last few races of the Ingliston season. Taken to John Maguire in Coventry that winter who used the engine, gearbox, suspension, uprights, brakes and other components in the construction of a GT car for 1982, with Maguire's space frame chassis and Lotus Esprit bodywork. The tub, nose, rear wing, sidepods and rear bodywork were returned to Scotland and sold to Norrie Galbraith who planned to fit the running gear off his March 782 and put it in the 792 tub. Unfortunately Galbraith was killed in the 782 just weeks later. The 782 tub was scrapped but 792 tub and the remains of the 782 were sold to Bobby Howlings who eventually sold them to Willy Widar in Belgium. The 782 parts and 792 tub were evidently then built into a car which took the identity of 782-26. With its components scattered, the 792 has effectively ceased to exist.
- March 782  (Adrian Russell): To Stephen South for F2 mid-1978 and fitted with a Hart 420R, but South was under-financed and only appeared occasionally. Took pole position at the Brands Hatch Aurora race in late-August. Sold to Adrian Russell (Thornton Heath, Surrey) for 1979 and used in F2, libre and Aurora until August when sold to Scot Jim Stevenson who ran it in libre, mainly at Ingliston, in late 1979 and early 1980. Then to Roger Philpott for hillclimbs in 1981, now with a 2.3-litre Hart engine, but again sold mid-season when Roy Lane pursuaded Philpott in August 1981 to exchange the 782 for Lane's new but underperforming March 802/812. Raced by Lane for the rest of the season, finished second in the Doune hillclimb in October. Sold to Norrie Galbraith for 1982 and upgraded to 79B specification but heavily damaged in Galbraith's fatal accident while filming for Scottish TV at Doune in September. The tub was scrapped but the remains of 782-26 went via Bobby Howlings to Willy Widar in Belgium and were at some point rebuilt on the tub from 792-20, which Galbraith had acquired shortly before the crash. This 782/792 went to Leo Schildkamp (Heerlen, Netherlands) in 1993, then to Per-Owe Soderberg (Laxå, Sweden) in 1994 and then Thomas Fridlund (Arvika, Sweden) in 2001. Then to John Bladon December 2005, and sold by him to Matthew Slinn December 2006. Slinn had plans to rebuild the car to 782 specification using a 78B tub.
- March 772P [U2] (Kim Mather): New for Marc Surer to race in the final F2 race of the 1977 season, at Donington Park in October 1977. Then to Patsy McGarrity (Belfast, Northern Ireland) for Irish Formula Atlantic in 1978, using a Fred Smith BDA engine. To Kim Mather (St Helens, Lancashire) for 1979 and raced in F2 and Aurora British F1 that year. Also raced by sponsor David Ward (Hesketh Bank, Lancashire) in libre racing. Crashed heavily by Ward at Aintree in July, and rapidly rebuilt on a 782 or 783 tub for Mather to use for the rest of the season. Mather recalls that the 783 was sold to Jim Evans, but Evans has no recollection of this. The damaged 772P tub is claimed to have been sold to the Seattle area and rebuilt into a car that was later owned in Canada. Neither of these stories has yet been confirmed.
- Tyrrell 008  (Desiré Wilson): First appearing at the 1978 South African GP, Tyrrell 008-3 was Patrick Depailler's regular car through 1978, and was the car in which he won the 1978 Monaco GP. It was sold to Melchester Racing for 1979, and raced by Desire Wilson in Aurora British F1. It was then acquired by Nick Mason, and raced by John Brindley in the 1982 BF1 series, in HSCC Historic F1 in 1982 and 1983, and in the one-off the MCD British Open race in 1983. Mason sold the car in October 1991, and it returned to historic racing in 1993. It has raced regularly in historic racing ever since, appearing at Monaco in 2002 and in 2008.
- March 772P [U1] (Gianfranco Brancatelli): New for the works March F2 team in 1977, fitted with a works BMW engine, and raced by Patrick Neve in the opening F2 race at Silverstone, qualifying and finishing third. Then raced by Alex Dias Ribeiro at Thruxton, taking pole position and again finishing third. Jochen Mass took over the drive for Hockenheim and the Nürburgring, winning both races, after which Ribeiro drove it once more at Vallelunga. Bruno Giacomelli, who had been racing a works March 772-Hart, then took over the 772P-BMW for the next six races, winning at Mugello in June. Driven again by Ribeiro at Donington Park in October. Sold to Norman Dickson (Perth, Scotland), fitted with a Hart 420R, and used with great success in libre, Retained by Dickson as a hire car in 1979. To George McMillan (North Berwick, Scotland) for 1980, and fitted with a Swindon BDX engine for libre over the next three seasons. Retained unused in 1983 when McMillan raced a Ralt RT2, and then sold to someone "down south" to use as a GT or Special Saloon. The car reappeared in France a little later, having been acquired by hillclimber Jean-Jacques Lecorre. It was stored briefly in the garage of Alain Prat, and then sold to Jean-François Pelletier (Chinon, France), fitted with a Cosworth BDD, and raced by him from 1984 to 1990. This car was advertised in France in January 2016, with no explanation of where it had been since 1990. By this time it had been restored to Giacomelli's SCAINI livery. It was next seen in 2019, when raced by Pascal Gerbout in Hstoric F2.
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.
These results were compiled primarily from the race reports in Autosport during the season, with some additional information from the results section of Autocourse, and some details compiled by Jeremy Jackson from a variety of sources, including Autosport, Motoring News and the Formula One Register books. All the chassis identities were taken from research elsewhere on this site.
All comments, clarifications, corrections and additions are most welcome. Please email Allen (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you can help in any way with our research.