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View Full Version : Warwick Farm Touring Cars - 1968



Steve Holmes
08-03-2011, 01:18 AM
What impresses most about this footage, other than the obvious capabilities of Pete Geoghegan in the Mustang GTA which brought him 3 ATCC titles, is the amazing speed of the Mini Coopers, and particularly that of Brian Foley.

This isn't a championship race, as the ATCC was still a single race event at this stage. Although the 1968 ATCC race was also held at Warwick Farm, some obvious big names are missing here, including Norm Beechey, Jim McKeown, Alan Hamilton, and the Kiwis Paul Fahey, Red Dawson, and Rod Coppins.

But still its an interesting piece of footage, and the skill shown by the Mini Cooper drivers to keep the momentum up around the corners to overcome their lack of power compared to the V8s is amazing to watch.

I figured this was early 1968 even though the footage doesn't seem to confirm this, as it appears the Foley Cooper S is in its blue with red and yellow stripes that Team Trident ran that season. Also, Niel Allen is driving one of the Mustangs, raced the previous season by Greg Cusack, but which would be raced in the '68 ATCC race by Fred Gibson after Allen had cut back on his racing following a big shunt at Lakeside in a McLaren M4a.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyjxtl_pk4Y

Steve Holmes
08-03-2011, 01:18 AM
Part 2


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uj8tareZWLU&feature=related

Steve Holmes
08-03-2011, 01:19 AM
Part 3


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Af_gxryECSw

Steve Holmes
08-03-2011, 07:57 PM
Of the three Mustangs in the race, the Geoghegan version is now owned by Des Wall, and the Jane car was written off in 1970 when driven by Chris Brauer. But what happened to the Cusack/Allen/Gibson car?

Also, what happened to Brian Foleys incredible Cooper S?

Leo D
08-24-2011, 10:28 AM
The car I would have liked to see win the 1968 ATCC at Warwick Farm..... The Norm Beechey Camaro. These pictures taken on its debut run at Calder Park, where he won first time out against Pete Geoghegan.

A bit hard to see in the picture, but parked beside the Camaro was a HK Monaro.... a sign of his next move, the Camaro only being an interim vehicle between the Chevy Nova and the HK Monaro...

http://img810.imageshack.us/img810/6600/nbc2.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/810/nbc2.jpg/)

http://img14.imageshack.us/img14/6910/nbc1w.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/14/nbc1w.jpg/)

Leo D
08-24-2011, 10:35 AM
The Niel Allen Mustang seen in the video.... this time at Sandown heading up the Pit Straight. This car was origanally run by Greg Cusack in the same Castrol colour scheme as Pete Geoghegans, but Greg Cusack did very few events in it.

http://img839.imageshack.us/img839/6945/namc.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/839/namc.jpg/)

And the Brian Foley Mini... in the pits at Sandown..

http://img543.imageshack.us/img543/6428/51595595.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/543/51595595.jpg/)

Steve Holmes
08-25-2011, 07:14 PM
Greg, these are magic! Thanks for posting them.

The Beechey Camaro was a real stunner wasn't it! I've always found it a little mysterious though. He only raced it very briefly. I've heard he raced it as little as just four events. Did he always plan to run a Monaro in 1969? Was the Camaro really an interim car between the Nova and Monaro or did he have plans to race the Camaro in 1969, but then changed his plans after he'd already built the Camaro? It seems like a strange decision to purchase, import and race prepare the Camaro for so little track action when the Nova was already a well sorted race car and could have seen him through until the arrival of the HK Monaro.

And what happened to the Camaro after Beechey had finished with it? Why did nobody buy it off him and race it? Beechey qualified the Camaro 2nd for the 1968 ATCC race behind Geoghegan. So it was obviously a good car. Interesting also, he made a visit to NZ in late 1968, but took the Nova with him, rather than the Camaro.

Leo D
09-19-2011, 08:03 AM
Sorry Steve.... been a little distracted of late...

The Beechey Camaro was certainly a little mysterious in as much that it made very few appearances. As to where it went after its few races, I do not know.... I remember seeing a picture in Racing Car News of Norm and Margaret standing on the corner of Haight & Ashbury in San Francisco (you’d have to have been around in the 1960’s for that to have any meaning) that was included in a story of their trip to the USA to buy the Camaro.

I’m sure Thunder 427 has an interesting story about the Camaro appearing in a used car lot on the Nepean Highway out of Melbourne for sale at some stage.

I tend to believe that it was indeed an interim car between the Nova and the Monaro... as I said, the Monaro was parked beside the Camaro on its debut at Calder, and I don’t think that was by chance.

It must be remembered that when the Camaro was brought into service, the Nova had in reality been around a long time... well a long time for Norm.... The Nova saw service at 2 ATCC races, the first being 1966 at Bathurst, where Norm took both his championship winning Mustang and the Nova to Bathurst, qualifying in both cars, but choosing to race the Nova. Pete Geoghegan came out on top in his 1965 Mustang.

1967 again saw the Nova at Lakeside and in what should have been a winning position, but it was not to be.... Pete Geoghegan again coming out on top, this time in his new 1967 Mustang....

1968 at Warwick Farm, I’m guessing that Norm and his sponsors wanted to see him in something different, hence the Camaro. Unfortunately, the car didn’t go the distance and he spent most of the event watching Pete Geoghegan motor onto another championship win.

My memory of the Nova going to NZ was for the Bay park event, where he would have been one of the headliners....

The Nova at Sandown.... the same trim it would have appeared at Bay Park in..

http://img694.imageshack.us/img694/2283/nbsp.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/694/nbsp.jpg/)

Oldfart
09-19-2011, 08:27 AM
The Nova certainly was at BayPark, and what an impressive beast. The understeer on the cement dust very rapidly changing to oversteer was a sight to remember, as was being poked through the wooden railing. Damn I need a scanner!

Steve Holmes
09-20-2011, 12:00 AM
Sorry Steve.... been a little distracted of late...

The Beechey Camaro was certainly a little mysterious in as much that it made very few appearances. As to where it went after its few races, I do not know.... I remember seeing a picture in Racing Car News of Norm and Margaret standing on the corner of Haight & Ashbury in San Francisco (youíd have to have been around in the 1960ís for that to have any meaning) that was included in a story of their trip to the USA to buy the Camaro.

Iím sure Thunder 427 has an interesting story about the Camaro appearing in a used car lot on the Nepean Highway out of Melbourne for sale at some stage.

I tend to believe that it was indeed an interim car between the Nova and the Monaro... as I said, the Monaro was parked beside the Camaro on its debut at Calder, and I donít think that was by chance.

It must be remembered that when the Camaro was brought into service, the Nova had in reality been around a long time... well a long time for Norm.... The Nova saw service at 2 ATCC races, the first being 1966 at Bathurst, where Norm took both his championship winning Mustang and the Nova to Bathurst, qualifying in both cars, but choosing to race the Nova. Pete Geoghegan came out on top in his 1965 Mustang.

1967 again saw the Nova at Lakeside and in what should have been a winning position, but it was not to be.... Pete Geoghegan again coming out on top, this time in his new 1967 Mustang....

1968 at Warwick Farm, Iím guessing that Norm and his sponsors wanted to see him in something different, hence the Camaro. Unfortunately, the car didnít go the distance and he spent most of the event watching Pete Geoghegan motor onto another championship win.

My memory of the Nova going to NZ was for the Bay park event, where he would have been one of the headliners....

The Nova at Sandown.... the same trim it would have appeared at Bay Park in..

http://img694.imageshack.us/img694/2283/nbsp.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/694/nbsp.jpg/)

Thanks Greg. Yes that all makes sense re the Camaro and Nova. Beechey did replace his cars pretty regularly, which helped keep interest up. It seems he either purchased or was about to purchase the Nova in late 1965, and I think the car made its race debut at the 1966 ATCC race at Bathurst didn't it?

Beechey raced the car in NZ twice, at the end of 1967, and at the end of 1968. The 1968 Bay Park races must have been some of the last he did in the car. This was the Bay Park Xmas meeting.

What I wonder, is why nobody seems to have bought the Camaro off Beechey to race. It was obviously a pretty good car, Beechey started on the front row for the '68 ATCC race alongside Geoghegan, and ahead of Jane, McKeown, Manton, Fahey, Foley, Gibson, Dawson, etc. And Beechey ran second until the Camaro stopped on lap 12. Every Beechey race car before and after the Camaro found a buyer who raced it, except the Camaro. I vaguely seem to remember Myles telling me he saw the car for sale in a car yard. Or did I just imagine that?

Steve Holmes
09-20-2011, 12:01 AM
btw, neat photo of the Nova, thanks Greg.

Steve Holmes
07-12-2012, 08:15 PM
That Niel Allen Mustang is currently for sale: http://www.canepacollection.com/detail-1967-shelby-mustang-trans_am-used-5117120.html