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Beetle V8

Beetle6.jpg
'The Mick Hill-built VW Beetle - Chevy V8

BUILT : During the winter of 1975/76 by Mick Hill

CLASSIFICATION : SuperSaloon 

ENGINE : Chevy F5000 V8 cylinder ( now 5.7 ) 520 bhp

RACED BY : Mick Hill ( 1976/77 ), Doug Niven ( 78/79 ), Jeff Wilson, Terry King ( '82 ), Gary Charlwood, Peter Thomalla ('92 ), etc

CURRENTLY : alive and well in the North-West

NOTES : My favourite Supersaloon and I`m lucky to have both sat in her and had exclusive access to the Hill family archives. If Baby Bertha is the number 1 Supersaloon then this amazing machine is a close 2nd I reckon. Built by SuperSaloon series pioneer Mick Hill for the 1976 using a real Beetle cockpit on a spaceframe chassis ,F5000 engine and parts from a Trojan T102 F5000 single seater. Having ironed out the white cars gremlins by 1978/79 next owner Doug Niven ( in blue ) had its best seasons with 47 wins. Niven`s Mechanic come driver Jeff Wilson ,then Terry King continued racing her in Donington GTs into the 1980s. In fact though the car became less competitive over time it had a much longer race career than you might think. Gary Charlwood had her at Lydden then at the end of the 1991 ( back in white ) in it`s 15th season it had a shunt at Oulton which sidelined it but yet it still carried on. It was still active at Oulton as late as 1998 in yellow with a smaller engine. 

Tired and chopped about It was nearly lost though. Spotted abandoned outside a Cambridge Garage what was left was bought by current owner Dave Taylor and in 2008 painstakingly restored the old girl back to Mick Hill spec and livery. Taylor reunited Hill with the now immaculate car at the Goodwood Festival Of Speed. The car cheated death again after thieves stoll some of the bodywork from Taylor , thankfully not the chassis itself. That caused the salvaged old body moulds to come good and replecement were fitted and the car repainted back to Doug Niven-spec blue returning again to the GFS. The car makes a few appearences each year and the Niven link has taken it into Scotland for Jim Clark memorial gatherings and I believe Jackie Stewart is a fan ! 

When asked why doesnt the Beetle race...Taylor says he`s too old now but really the car is VERY loud ! Afterall it`s from a long gone era when race cars were aloud to be loud !

VW Beetle  'Time attack' car
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BUILT : by Granville Taylor during 2012

CLASSIFICATION : 'Pro Extreme' class of Time Attack 

ENGINE : 2.1-litre Subaru boxer engine, GT35/86 Turbo 

COMPETED BY : Granville Taylor ( 2013 to date )

CURRENTLY : alive and well in Shropshire

NOTES : Granville Taylor makes no secret of being inspired to build a Beetle competition car by the Mick Hill version ,owned by Dave Taylor ( no relation ). 

'Time Attack' is a recent addition to the UK motorsport calendar even though the concept of time trialing is as old as motorsport itself. Time Attack developed in Japan and came to the UK in 2006. These days the cars at the top end are very highly modified and use top UK race tracks. Taylor`s rear-wheeled drive, Subaru-powered machine runs in the top 'Pro Extreme' class though he faces 4WD machines.  

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