OldRacingCars.com

New Zealand Grand Prix

Pukekohe, 6 Jan 1979

ResultsLapsTime/Speed Winnings
1 Teo Fabi March 782/79B [15] - Ford BDA Hart
#3 March Cars (see note 1)
30 29m 50.4s
$NZ 2000
2 Larry Perkins March 77B [30] - Ford BDA Nicholson
#1 Colin Giltrap Racing (see note 2)
30 29m 53.0s
$NZ 1000
3 Brett Riley March 77B ["763-U3"] - Ford BDA Nicholson
#8 (see note 3)
30 30m 03.4s
$NZ 750
4 Eje Elgh March 782 [14] - Ford BDA Swindon
Dick Bennetts Racing (see note 4)
30 30m 07.6s
$NZ 500
5 Steve Millen Chevron B42 [42-78-01] - Ford BDA Hart
Schollum Racing
30
$NZ 400
6 David Oxton Chevron B34 [34-76-OX] - Ford BDA Nicholson
#18 Vacation Hotels
30 30m 14.2s
$NZ 350
7 John Smith Ralt RT1 [91] - Ford BDA Swindon
#7
30
 
8 Jeff Wood March 78B - Ford BDA Willis
#4 Great Plains Racing (see note 5)
30
 
9 Howard Wood Lyncar 010 [010] - Ford BDA
29
 
10 Eric Morgan Chevron B29 [29-75-30] - Ford BDA
#15 (see note 6)
11 Collision  
11 Hugh Owen Ralt RT1 [73] - Ford BDA Nicholson
11 Collision  
12 Ross Stone Cuda JR3 - Ford BDA Stone
#22
7 Front wishbone  
13 Ken Smith March 76B [20] - Ford BDA Nicholson
#11 La Valise Travel (see note 7)
4 Withdrew, wrong tyres  
14 Robbie Booth March 74B [1] - Ford BDA Swindon
(see note 8)
4 Clutch  
15 Dave McMillan Ralt RT1 [36] - Ford BDA Hart
#41 (see note 9)
4 Water leak  
DNA Andrew Miedecke Galloway HG1 - Ford BDA Dewhurst
#9
Did not arrive
DNA Grant Campbell Chevron B39 - Ford BDA
Did not arrive
DNA Norm Lankshear Chevron B34 [34-76-19] - Ford BDA Hart
Did not arrive

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

Qualifying
1 Teo Fabi (F/Pac) 1.6-litre March 782/79B [15] - Ford BDA Hart 0.58.0
2 Larry Perkins (F/Pac) 1.6-litre March 77B [30] - Ford BDA Nicholson 0.58.4
3 Brett Riley (F/Pac) 1.6-litre March 77B ["763-U3"] - Ford BDA Nicholson 0.58.5
4 John Smith (F/Pac) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1 [91] - Ford BDA Swindon 0.58.6
5 David Oxton (F/Pac) 1.6-litre Chevron B34 [34-76-OX] - Ford BDA Nicholson 0.58.7
6 Eje Elgh (F/Pac) 1.6-litre March 782 [14] - Ford BDA Swindon 0.58.9
7 Dave McMillan (F/Pac) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1 [36] - Ford BDA Hart 0.59.0
8 Steve Millen (F/Pac) 1.6-litre Chevron B42 [42-78-01] - Ford BDA Hart 0.59.2
9 Jeff Wood (F/Pac) 1.6-litre March 78B - Ford BDA Willis 0.59.4
10 Ross Stone (F/Pac) 1.6-litre Cuda JR3 - Ford BDA Stone 0.59.8
11 Ken Smith (F/Pac) 1.6-litre March 76B [20] - Ford BDA Nicholson 1.00.0
12 Hugh Owen (F/Pac) 1.6-litre Ralt RT1 [73] - Ford BDA Nicholson 1.00.5
13 Robbie Booth (F/Pac) 1.6-litre March 74B [1] - Ford BDA Swindon 1.01.2
14 Howard Wood (F/Pac) 1.6-litre Lyncar 010 [010] - Ford BDA 1.01.2
15 Eric Morgan (F/Pac) 1.6-litre Chevron B29 [29-75-30] - Ford BDA 1.01.6

Notes on the cars:

  1. March 782/79B [15] (Teo Fabi): Ricardo Zunino's works car at Thruxton 27 Mar 1978 and presumably all season. Converted to Formula Atlantic for Teo Fabi to race in New Zealand in January 1979 (where it was reported to be wearing plate "782-16", an observation that is now thought to have been incorrect). To Ken Smith (New Zealand) and raced in Formula Pacific in the 1979/80, 1980/81 and 1981/82 seasons. Then to Warren Heron, but not raced until Bay Park in March 1989. Raced twice in 1990, but then stored until two further races, in 1998 and 1999. Sold back to Ken Smith in 2009. To Robert Shaw (UK) in 2010, and restored back to Formula 2 specification. To Marc Devis (Belgium) late 2016.
  2. March 77B [30] (Larry Perkins): Entered by March for Danny Sullivan in the 1978 New Zealand International series. Sold to Colin Giltrap and entered by him for Dave McMillan at Baypark Mar 1978 then for Larry Perkins in the 1978/79 series. Raced by Desiré Wilson in the Jan/Feb 1980 series then John Smith in Jan 1981. Sold to Ray Hanger (Australia) and used in the 1981 AF1 and Pacific series. Also raced at Shah Alam in October 1981.
  3. March 77B ["763-U3"] (Brett Riley): Brett Riley took delivery of a March 77B in December 1977 that is believed to have carried the chassis number 763-U3 when it arrived in New Zealand. Riley raced it in Formula Pacific in 1978, 1979 and 1980 before selling it to Tom Donovan who progressively modified it and ran it in hillclimbs as well as F/Pacific up to 1983. He then won the 1984 and 1985 NZ hillclimb championships running a 1800cc Cosworth engine in the car. It was sold to Stuart McChesney in 1985 and again used in hillclimbs. It then went to Kenny Smith around 1987 and then to John Mackinlay (Christchurch) around 1993 who restored it and raced it in historic racing 1994-1996. It passed to Garry Cliff (Magnum Motors, Christchurch) in Nov 1996 then Peter Finlay in Australia in Aug 1998 then Kevin Miller in May 1999. Retained May 2003.
  4. March 782 [14] (Eje Elgh): Eddie Cheever's car at Thruxton 27 Mar 1978 and presumably all season. To Dick Bennetts Racing and converted to Formula Atlantic for Eje Elgh to race in New Zealand in January 1979. Then to Charlie Kirby as a 78B and raced in Atlantic from 1979 to 1981. Offered for sale in On Track in 1981 by Kirby's Transatlantic Racing Services (Norcross, GA). Next seen with Andy Falbo (Detroit, MI) who raced it in US Formula Atlantic in 1983, and again in 1986 and 1988. Retained by Falbo and still owned by him in 2015.
  5. 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.
  6. Chevron B29 [29-75-30] (Eric Morgan): New to Team Warsteiner Eurorace for Hans Binder to drive in Formula 2, using a BMW engine. Then to Brian Redman who drove it in the 1976 New Zealand Internationals, still with its 2-litre BMW engine, as part of the Fred Opert team. Sold in New Zealand to David Oxton, fitted with a Formula Pacific BDA engine and raced in the New Zealand Formula Pacific series in January 1977. Then to Eric Morgan for Gold Star and International races from 1977 to 1981. Sold to Chris Read for 1982. Later history with the car indicates that it was sold by Read to Kenny Smith in 1991, then to Brian Sampson in 1992, then Peter Whelan in 2000, and Miles Jackson in 2008.
  7. March 76B [20] (Ken Smith): Sold via Doug Shierson to Ken Smith (New Zealand) and debuts in early 1977 New Zealand races. Retained to 1981 then sold to Warren Binning. Returned to Smith in 1982 and retained to at least 2003.
  8. March 74B [1] (Robbie Booth): New to Ted Wentz (Philadelphia, PA) and raced in the 1974 British Formula Atlantic season. To New Zealander Alan Crocker, who had moved to England to race in the 1975 British series, but a blown engine curtailed his season. Used occasionally in the 1976 Indylantic series and in libre racing. Croker took the car to New Zealand and raced it in the 1977 Formula Pacific series, then sold it there to Ken Smith, who rented it to Ken Sager to drive in the 1977/78 Gold Star series, and to Robbie Booth for the 1978/79 season. It reappeared with Robbie Hislop in 1981/82, then to Tony Batchelor for 1982/83. Last seen when raced by Keith Laney in 1984/85, and sold by him back to Kenny Smith some time before 1988. Later sold by Smith to Richard Carter in Australia to donate parts to Carter's rebuild of March 73B/8. The remains of the car were sold with the 73B to George Makin (Melbourne, Australia) about 2005.
  9. Ralt RT1 [36] (Dave McMillan): Consigned by Ralt to Ralt American in summer 1976. Run by Dave McMillan in New Zealand Gold Star series, late 1976. Chassis number observed on Dave McMillan's car by Dave McKinney at Baypark, 2 Jan 1977, and published NZMA 28 Jan 77 p5. Described there as ex Kevin Cogan, so one of the four RT1s [chassis 30; 33; 34; 36] shown in Ralt build records [reproduced Autosport 1977] sent to Brian Robertson for Formula Atlantic series in 1976. Since 30 is known to be the car of Bertil Roos, and 33 that of Craig Hill, we can assume that Cogan indeed used 36 [except at the last race of the year when he is known to use Hill's RT1-33], and 34 was that of Richard Spenard - a car originally intended for McMillan's use in North America, until his sponsorship fell through. Retained by McMillan until at least 1980, and used in both North America and New Zealand. McMillan says took his own car to Canada NZMA 29 Jul 77 p5. NZMA report of the race at Halifax says car used in NZ. Chassis number given for McMillan's car at Bay Park, 2 Jan 1978 [NZMA 20 Jan 78 p4].

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.

The New Zealand race results have been provided by Chris Townsend based on material in Autosport and Motoring News reports in the UK, Motoraction in New Zealand plus the information supplied by a wide range of contributors.

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.