Quaker State Nationals (Mahoning Valley Region SCCA National)
Nelson Ledges, 25 Jul 1976
|1||Bobby Brown||(F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 76B  - Ford BDA Hart
#79 Audiovax (see note 1)
|2||Robert J. Nelkin||(F/Atl) 1.6-litre Chevron B34 [34-76-19] - Ford BDA Hart
#67 Hunter Mountain (see note 2)
|3||Chuck Dietrich||(F/Atl) 1.6-litre Brabham BT38 [15?] - Ford BDA
#62 Dietrich Motors Inc (see note 3)
|4||Paul Henry||(FC) 1.1-litre Chevron B25 [25-73-15] - Cosworth BDJ
#54 Paul Henry (see note 4)
|5||Thomas C. Jones||(FC) Brabham
#11 Development 5000
|19||2nd in FC|
|R||Roger Bighouse||(F5000) 5-litre Rassey 74 - Chevrolet V8
#61 Rassey Manufacturing (see note 5)
|R||John Mortensen||(F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 76B  - Ford BDA
#89 Karba Racing Ent. Inc. (see note 6)
|R||Gary Robinson||(F/Atl) 1.6-litre March 712M [20?]
#45 Gary's Head Shop (see note 7)
All cars are 1.6-litre FB unless noted.
|Qualifying information not available|
Notes on the cars:
- March 76B  (Bobby Brown): New to Bobby Brown (Hicksville, NY) to replace a Chevron B34 and raced in Pro events and in SCCA NEDiv FB in 1976, winning the 1976 Run-Offs. Brown won an early-season SCCA National at Charlotte in April 1977 before moving into Can-Am with a March 77S. The 76B was advertised in Road Racers Magazine in November 1977, so Brown must have kept it through the 1977 season. The car is then unknown for the next three seasons, returning to view when it was sold by fabricator Marc Bahner (Santa Ana, CA) to Chris Bender (Reno, NV) at the end of 1980. This is presumably the car Bender used to finish third in Northern Pacific Division Formula Atlantic in 1981. Bender later sold it to Ric Shaw (Santa Rosa, CA) who ran it as a CSR in NPDiv from 1982 to 1985, and then as a Formula Atlantic. Subsequent history unknown, until sold by Mark Rincon (Redding, CA) to Ken Stone (Redding, CA) some time before 2010, then sold to Jack Woodruff (Vail, Colorado) in 2013. It was restored from CSR to Formula Atlantic spec by Bahner but Woodruff wrecked the caer at Laguna Seca when the front suspenson collapsed. It returned to Bahner again for a new chassis, and was racing again by 2020.
- Chevron B34 [34-76-19] (Robert J. Nelkin): Tom Bagley (Centre Hall, PA) raced a yellow-and-blue Chevron B34 run by Fred Opert Racing in three IMSA Formula Atlantic races in early 1976, with Kent Oil sponsorship. This car was then raced by Juan Cochesa (Venezuela) in the Players Formula Atlantic series, starting at Edmonton on 16 May. Chris Waddell's report from Edmonton for Autosport described Cochesa's car as "an Opert B34 driven earlier in the year by Tom Bagley". Cochesa then moved to a new car, and the ex-Bagley car was sold to RJ Nelkin (Roslyn, NY/Woodbury, NY), who first raced it in an SCCA National at Summit Point in late June. He then raced it in Pro and SCCA races for the rest of 1976. Nelkin recalls that the car was then returned to Opert to be used as a spare car for Keke Rosberg and Mikko Kozarowitzky to use in the New Zealand Formula Pacific series in January 1977. After the 1977 New Zealand series, the car was sold to Norman Lankshear (Feilding, New Zealand) and raced in the Gold Star series in 1977/78 and 1978/79, and the International series in early 1978 and early 1979. It was then sold to Bryan Hartley (Palmerston) and raced by him in the 1981/82 season. The car was then sold to John Wigston (Auckland), fitted with a Ford crossflow engine and used in hillclimbs in New Zealand in the late 1980s. Wigston was reported to still have the car in October 2016.
- Brabham BT38 [15?] (Chuck Dietrich): New for Motul Rondel Racing at Hockenheim in mid-April 1972, and raced all season by Bob Wolleck. Raced once by Carlos Reutemann at Enna. Sold to Bill O'Connor (Highland Park, IL) for Formula B for 1973. To Chuck Dietrich (Sandusky, OH) for 1974, then fitted with a Cosworth BDA for 1975, 1976 and 1977. He continued to race it in 1978, but at the age of 53 was appearing less often. This was presumably the Brabham he drove in 1979, but by 1980 he had replaced it with a Lola T460. The subsequent history of the Brabham is unknown.
- Chevron B25 [25-73-15] (Paul Henry): Sold to Geoffrey Freeman (Yellow Springs, OH) of Freeman Racing Enterprises for SCCA Formula B. Ostensibly for Bobby Brown to use in late season Atlantic races. Brown was entered in a blue B25 at Watkins Glen but did not appear. He may have used the car at Trois Rivieres but was not on the entry list at Elkhart Lake. Brown does not remember driving a B25. Then sold by Freeman to Paul Henry (Clyde, OH) at some point during 1974 and converted to FC spec with a BDJ engine. Run for many years in SCCA class FC in Central Division and Henry qualified for the SCCA Runoffs in 1974 and 1975 in this car, before changing to a newer Chevron B34. Retained by the Henry family until sold to David Gathercole in 2008 and restored for UK historic racing. Raced by Gathercole and Steve Allen in HSCC racing in 2012 and 2014. Sold to Jamie Brashaw in 2014, and raced in HSCC events in 2015.
- Rassey 74 (Roger Bighouse): First known appearance was at the Pro F5000 race at Road America in July 1975, where Mark Alderson drove. He was not slowest in practice, and improved each session to record a time 15% slower than pole position, but only marginally slower than some of the other Midwest Division amateurs in a range of one-year-old and two-year-old Lolas. Alderson retired early in Heat 1. Mike Brockman took over the drive at Mid-Ohio a month later, but did not record a practice time and was the first retirement from Heat 1. A year later, Roger Bighouse drove the Rassey at Mid-Ohio and put in a much improved performance, qualifying 15th out of 21 in practice, but still 14% off pole, and finished both heats to be classified 15th overall. The car was not seen again but in 2003, Bruce Reimer got in touch to say he owned the car and was running it in vintage events in southern California.
- March 76B  (John Mortensen): John Mortensen (New York, NY/Weston, CT) raced a March 76B in SCCA events in 1976 and the livery - Midnight blue with red stripe on each side - exactly matches that given in March records for 76B-7.
- March 712M [20?] (Gary Robinson): Bruce Cambern (Dearborn, Michigan) bought an "ex-Pace" March 712M from Fred Opert, but the deal was brokered by Doug Shierson (Adrian, Michigan). Pace had raced several 712Ms as part of Williams' F2 team but this was the only one to move to the US, and a later advert for 712M-20 suggests it was that one. The F2 FVA engine was kept by Opert, and Cambern acquired a tired Vegantune twin cam. He raced the car in Central Division Formula B in 1973, when he scored eight points in SCCA Nationals, and may have had it earlier that that. Cambern recalls that the car was sold to a 'Gary' from Oklahoma, which is very likely to be Gary Robinson (Broken Arrow, Oklahoma) who raced a "March 712" in Southwest Division Formula Atlantic in 1976, 1977 and 1978. Robinson later acqured a March 75B, but exactly when he moved over to the newer car is unclear. Then unknown for ten years. In September 1989, Michael Duncan (Los Altos, CA) advertised a March 712, giving its chassis number as #20 and saying it had three owners from new, suggesting he had acquired it directly from Robinson. It then had a "fresh" Bahner tub and 77B bodywork, but the 1971 bodywork was with it. In 1990 or 1991, so possibly in response to these adverts, Simon Hadfield and Tony Thompson bought a March 712M from the US that still had its original HSCC logbooks. They sold it unrestored to Alain Filhol in France. Subsequent history unknown.
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.
Individual sources for this event
SCCA Sanction 76-N-37S. Official results from SCCA records at the IMRRC.