1968 BOAC 500
Brands Hatch

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Le Mans 1938
BOAC 500
Le Mans 1962
Howmet TX Gas Turbine
Dick Thompson only completed 4 laps before the throttle jammed wide open on the Howmet TX Gas Turbine car, causing it to crash at Druids. Behind him are the Lola-Chevrolets of Charlton and Bonnier...

Introduction



In 1966, a non-championship sports car race was held at Brands Hatch for a distance of 500 miles, with drivers David Piper and Bob Bondurant easily taking victory in an AC Cobra. With the success of this initial event, the World Sportscar Championship would add Brands Hatch to their calendar, while the British Sports Car Championship replaced their Guards Trophy event.

However, unlike the initial race's set distance of 500 miles, the new event would be run for six hours. Even with a timed race, BOAC stepped in as the primary sponsor and chose to retain the 500 mile distance in the name, earning the popular title BOAC 500.

The 1968 BOAC 500



At exactly noon the flag dropped on the BOAC 500 for the start of six hours' racing. Only one car, the Hine/Crabtree Lotus 47 did not get away, having been pushed to one side with a split fuel tank.

The Porsches - Elford, Mitter, and Siffert driving - headed the pack over Paddock, with Bruce McLaren in the new Ford missing a gear and dropping back to about sixth place, behind the howling Howmet gas turbine car.

Jo Siffert headed the Porsche pack over the line at the end of the first lap, with Mitter and Elford close behind. Ickx (Ford GT40) was fourth. Thompson (Howmet) fifth. Charlton (Lola Mk 3) sixth and then McLaren in the Ford. Elford took over second place at Druids on lap two, and McLaren was quickly making up for his missed gear-change, passing Thompson and Ickx to take fourth place behind the Porsches.

1968 BOAC 500 Leading positions at 3 hours

Pos
Car
Driver
Co-Driver
Speed (MPH)
1
Ford GT40
J. lckx
B. Redman
95.52
2
Porsche 907
G. Mitter
L. Searfiotti
94.92
3
Porsche 907
V. Elford
J. Neerpaseh
4
Porsche 907
J. Siffert
H. Hermann
5
Ford GT40
P. Hawkins
D. Hobbs
6
Lola 70 Mk 3
J. Bonnier
S. Axelsson

With the Porsches now lined up in front of him, McLaren started to pick them off one by one, but not as easily as he might have hoped. The Porsches were not as fast in a straight line, and the red and gold Ford would streak past, only to be "done" on corners by the superior Porsche handling and braking.

The Howmet, which had been most impresssive on Brands' twisting circuit, screamed up Pilgrims and slammed into the protective bank on the outside of Druids with the throttle jammed wide open. The same thing had happened at Daytona - the car's first race, while at Sebring an engine mount had failed: Dick Thompson was unhurt.

With 27 minutes of the race run, McLaren put the Ford ahead of Siffert's Porsche in the middle of a monstrous traffic jam in Bottom Bend, one unfortunate back marker found himself being overtaken on each side by Mitter and Elford. After 36 minutes' racing two cars were out - the Howmet and the Prophet-Bond GT40, with rear end vibration. Sixth place was being fought for by the two Group 4 Lola-Chevrolets of Bonnier and Charlton. The traffic jam for the leaders was closing up again, and in the melee Elford took second place from Siffert - who promptly took it back again. Tony Lanfranchi retired the Nomad when a camshaft broke at Stirlings.

Jack Oliver and John Miles Gold Leaf Team Lotus Type 47
Jack Oliver and John Miles drove the Gold Leaf Team Lotus Type 47 to a clear class win ...

A Tiny Electrical Fault Costs Mitter and Porsche The Race



The Ford-Porsche "train" was in trouble again with back markers, this time the trouble being Dave Charlton in the Lola, who refused to get out cif the way; from the dodging and weaving to get past, Siffert emerged in the lead, with McLaren second and Elford third.

With just over an hour gone, Mitter brought his Porsche into the pits; he told the mechanics that there was juddering at the front, and that the red warning lamp was on, showing that the disc pads were worn out.

They jacked up the car and found that the front pads were almost unworn; there was an electrical fault in the warning lamp wiring. Scarfiotti took over after four minutes, and this stop put Ickx into fourth place. This tiny fault was to cost them the race.

Bruce McLaren brought the Ford in for more fuel and new tires after 1 hr 34min of racing - a stop which also took four minutes. While the Ford was being refuelled the leading Porsche rushed in, took on fuel and new front tires and rushed out again, all in 2min 50sec. These stops put the Elford/Neerpasch Porsche in the lead. Spence in the Ford second, and Herrmann (who had taken over Siffert's car) fourth behind the Ickx/Redman Ford GT40.

While things seemed to be settling down after the major routine stops, Mike Spence brought the Ford coasting round Clearways and straight on to the grass by the Grovewood Suite.

The driver hopped out and ran round to the back of the car; his fears were confirmed. The rubber "doughnut" on the left rear drive-shaft had broken. With this Ford now right out of the running, the Elford/Neerpasch Porsche was in the lead, followed by the Ickx/Redman GT40, then the two other works Porsches, headed by the Siffert-Herrmann car. Dave Charlton spun the Lola at Druids, opposite the hulk of the Howmet, and retired.

With 100 laps covered (at 2.45 p.m.). the Porsches lay one-two-three, but two laps later Elford brought his car in for more brake pads. Ben Pon, who was sharing a Porsche 910 with van Lennep, crashed on Portobello straigh, but was only slightly bruised.

Vic Elford's Porsche 910
Vic Elford gets all crossed up in the Porsche 910, which he shared with Neerpasch to finish third overall ...
Three hours racing gone, and the first hint of trouble cast a shadow over the Porsche pit. Siffert brought his car in unexpectedly with a locking front wheel; seconds later the Mitter/Scarfiotti car came in for more fuel. The mechanics saw to this and then went back to the other car.

Mitter then went out - only to go virtually straight on at Bottom Bend. He trickled the car back to the pits via the Stock Car slip road at Kidney, and the wheel bearings were checked again. He set off once more, and again took the short cut. This time the car's stay in the pits was permanent.

The Ickx/Redman Ford GT40 Takes The Lead



This drama put the Ickx/Redman Ford GT40 into the lead, with the two remaining Porsches in second and third places. Fourth was the Hawkins/Hobbs GT40 and fifth the Piper/Rodriguez veteran Ferrari 250LM. With just under two hours to go, Brian Redman brought the leading car in for its final routine stop for fuel and tires; it took 2min 05sec to get it ready again for Jacky Ickx to take out. The car pulled back up the slope from the pits just as Mitter was appearing at the exit to Clearways. It took around 25 minutes for Mitter to catch and pass Ickx, who must have known that the Porsche had one more refuelling stop due.

A little light relief was brought into the proceedings by the sudden reappearance of the Dean/Beckwith Dino. It had "retired" into the paddock with a broken steering column bracket. At 4.15 pm. Beckwith sneaked back down the road from the paddock and re-entered the race. Nick Syrett, Clerk of the Course, was there in a flash with the black flag and the Dino was hauled in while Tony Dean did his "Well... we tried" act with officials.


After a faultless run the J.W. Automotive Ford GT40, driven by Jacky Ickx and Brian Redman, won the 1968 BOAC 500 ...

With just over an hour to go the leading Porsche came into the pits for the last time. It took 38sec to take on 10 gallons of fuel, check the tires and change drivers, Scarfiotti taking over from Mitter.

Now things really started to hot up. Ickx in the GT40 was in the lead-but only by 45 seconds. In third place was Elford, one lap down and immediately behind on the road, while fourth was the Hawkins-Hobbs GT40, and in fifth place was the Bonnier-Axelson Lola.

By 5.15 pm. Scarfiotti had carved a good portion of the lead away, especially after Ickx had a "moment" out in the backwoods, carrying on only 26 seconds ahead. Vic Elford was right behind Scarfiotti on the road, urging him on.

The rest of the field were soldiering on, virtually ignored by the crowd, even though Hawkins (GT40) and the Rodriquez-Pierpoint Ferrari 250LM were rarely more than yards apart, though two laps separated them on the lap charts!

John Wyer and David Yorke, well in charge as usual in the JW Automotive pit, kept Ickx fully informed and the lead never fell below 20 seconds in the last half-hour.

The flag was hung out at 6 p.m., first to take it being third place man Vic Elford, Jacky Ickx cruised round at the end of the slowing-down lap to be engulfed by hordes of photographers, mechanics and hangers-on.

Sir Giles Guthrie, Chairman of BOAC, presented the trophies to Ickx and Redman and persuaded John Wyer to make a short speech on JW's prospects. Porsche had to be content with second and third, but further extended their big lead in the World Sports Car Constructors' Championship.

1968 BOAC 500 General Classification

Pos
Car
Driver
Co-Driver
Laps
Time
Av. Speed (MPH)
1
Ford GT40
J. lckx
B. Redman
218
6hr 01 min 13sec.
95.96
2
Porsche 907
G. Mitter
L. Searfiotti
218
6hr 01 min 35sec.
95.86
3
Porsche 907
V. Elford
J. Neerpaseh
217
6hr 00min 09sec.
4
Porsche 907
P. Hawkins
D. Hobbs
210
6hr 00min 12sec.
5
Ferrari 250LM
P. Rodriguez
R. Pierpoint
210
6hr 01 min 19sec.
6
Lola 70 Mk 3
J. Bonnier
S. Axelsson
207
6hr 00min 14sec.

1968 BOAC 500 Group 4

Pos
Engine Capacity
Car
Driver
Co-Driver
Laps
Time
Av. Speed (MPH)
1
1301 - 2000 cc
Lotus 47
J. Oliver
J. Miles
202
6hr 01 min 43sec.
88.79
2
1301 - 2000 cc
Porsche 906
W. Bradley
E. Liddell
200
   
3
1301 - 2000 cc
Porsche 906
M. Horne
J. Harris
217
   
1
2001 - 5000 cc
Ford GT40
J. Ickx
B. Redman
     
2
2001 - 5000 cc
Ford GT40
P. Hawkins
D. Hobbs
     
3
2001 - 5000 cc
Ferrari 250LM
P. Rodriguez
R. Pierpont
209
   

1968 BOAC 500 Group 6

Pos
Engine Capacity
Car
Driver
Co-Driver
Laps
Time
Av. Speed (MPH)
1
1301 - 2000 cc
Porsche 910
D. Spoerry
R. Steinemann
207
6hr 01 min 17sec.
91.0
2
1301 - 2000 cc
Chevron
D. Martland
B. Classick
206
   
3
1301 - 2000 cc
Porsche 910
K. Foitek
R. Lins
206
   
1
2001 - 5000 cc
Porsche 907
G. Mitter
L. Scarfiotti
     
2
2001 - 5000 cc
Porsche 907
V. Elford
J. Neerpasch
     

Also see:


1968 Le Mans
Ford GT40
Vic Elford
Comments page 1 of 1
Click here to add a comment
Nander
Posted 1010 days ago
These are totally diefnrfet cars!! Neither are that great for the money. The Ford is older and will need some fixing up. You'd be better with a Honda or Toyota of the same year. They're more reliable and hold value better than a Ford. As for the Porsche, it's expensive and again, there are many, many cars out there that are a better choice for the money. Of course, if you just want a car for the looks and are willing to spend the money for status, then the Porsche is for you. *** tminoaef *** [url= *** edcmivi *** ]edcmivi[/url] [link= *** izvfpbnik *** ]izvfpbnik[/link]
Kiana
Posted 1010 days ago
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Kayleen
Posted 1012 days ago
Superior thinking dentastrmoed above. Thanks!
 
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