SCCA Formula A 1965

The SCCA has introduced many classes over the decades, some well-received and some less so, but it is hard to think of any class which was as poorly supported in its first year as Formula A was in 1965.

The biggest problem was the number of cars: from the Atlantic Ocean to the Rockies, there was approximately one car every 300,000 square miles. In the Southwest Division, Hap Sharp had an ex-Indianapolis backup Cooper T53 which was only five years old and had a 2.5-litre engine; in the Midwest Division, Bud Morley had converted his Elva Mk 7 to single-seater form and with its 2-litre BMW engine it would have been broadly competitive with the 1600cc Formula B cars; and on the east coast Warren Shamlian had a Lotus of some description, probably a Lotus 18/21. The problem for these guys was that they were too thinly spread and as the SCCA points system only awarded points if two or more cars appeared in the same race, they were doomed to score nothing. The only race that saw more than one FA was the Colorado Grand Prix at Continental Divide in May 1965 which was won by Sharp with Morley third. But this was a Pro race so no SCCA points were on offer.

In California the situation was slightly better as there were three Formula A cars: Rod Carveth's "Brutus", a Lotus 24 with a 3-litre Oldsmobile V8 engine; Wayne Jones with a Lotus 35 with 2.5-litre Climax engine and Don Radbruch, who had the Indianapolis Cooper T54, now with a Buick engine. Also, in the Pacific northwest, Pete Lovely still had his 1960 Cooper T51 with a 2.5-litre Ferrari engine. Unfortunately, even when they entered the same race, they rarely turned up and so even here no point was scored.

Significant Formula SCCA races in 1965

16 May 1965 > Colorado Grand Prix at Continental Divide

19 Sep 1965 > Hanford Formula at Hanford Motor Speedway

07 Nov 1965 > Grand Primo de Juarez at Juárez

07 Nov 1965 > Pacific Coast Regional Championship at Vacaville

With no driver having scored a single point in the class in SCCA Nationals, nobody had qualified for the Runoffs so no class race was held.