1984 James Hardie 1000
|1984 James Hardie 1000|
The 1984 James Hardie 1000 was the 25th running of the Bathurst 1000 touring car race. It was held on 30 September 1984 at the Mount Panorama Circuit just outside Bathurst in New South Wales, Australia and was Round 4 of the 1984 Australian Endurance Championship. This race was celebrated as 'The Last of the Big Bangers', in reference to the Group C touring cars, which were competing at Bathurst for the last time.
The race was won by Peter Brock and Larry Perkins driving a Holden Commodore for the Holden Dealer Team, the third consecutive victory for Brock, Perkins and the HDT. It was the most dominant team performance for the HDT in the history of the race as the team claimed a 1-2 finish with John Harvey and David Parsons backing up their team leaders by finishing second. Third place was taken by the Mazda RX-7 of Allan Moffat and Gregg Hansford.
The race also saw the first appearance of the international Group A cars. The Group A class was won by the TWR Mobil Rover Vitesse of race rookies Jeff Allam and Armin Hahne who finished 12th outright. Second in class and 15th outright was the JPS Team BMW 635 CSi of 1967 Formula One World Champion Denny Hulme and Bavarian Prince Leopold von Bayern. Third in Group A and 20th outright was the Barry Seton / Don Smith Ford Mustang.
This was the last Bathurst to be held for Group C touring cars, which had first contested the Bathurst 1000 in 1973. While a production based category, continual parity adjustments to keep the leading vehicles roughly at the same pace had seen the cars become wildly over-specified.
The international Group A formula was allowed to enter for the first time as a prelude to their adoption for Bathurst and the Australian Touring Car Championship in 1985. The Group A cars were closer to pure bred racing cars in concept (notably the allowing of the cars interior to be removed, as well as the cars having a lower ride height), but without the extensive performance modifications allowed for Group C. Without the performance and aerodynamic aids, the Group A cars were much slower (the lead 3.5 L V8 Rover of Jeff Allam and Armin Hahne qualified 10 seconds slower than the pole time set by George Fury in the Nissan Bluebird turbo), and thus formed their own class. The low slung V8 Rovers did prove to be sensationally quick in a straight line though, with both cars being regularly recorded at 240 km/h (149 mph) on Conrod Straight, putting them on par with many of the privateer Mazda RX-7's.
|Pole||15||Nissan Motor Co.||George Fury||Nissan Bluebird Turbo||2:13.850||2:14.81|
|2||05||Marlboro Holden Dealer Team||Peter Brock||Holden VK Commodore||2:14.039||2:14.31|
|3||17||Palmer Tube Mills||Dick Johnson||Ford XE Falcon||2:14.710||2:15.07|
|4||6||Roadways Racing Pty. Ltd.||Allan Grice||Holden VK Commodore||2:14.886||2:14.74|
|5||43||Peter Stuyvesant International Racing||Allan Moffat||Mazda RX-7||2:16.411||2:15.54|
|6||31||JPS Team BMW||Jim Richards||BMW 635 CSi||2:16.795||2:16.49|
|7||2||Masterton Homes Pty. Ltd.||Steve Masterton||Ford XE Falcon||2:17.055||2:16.33|
|8||42||Peter Stuyvesant International Racing||Gregg Hansford||Mazda RX-7||2:18.051||2:15.85|
|9||41||Chequered Flag Magazine||Bob Morris||Mazda RX-7||2:18.107||2:16.05|
|10||12||John Goss Racing Pty. Ltd.||Tom Walkinshaw||Jaguar XJS||2:18.960||2:16.09|
* Nissan scored the first ever turbocharged Pole Position at Bathurst when George Fury grabbed pole with a time of 2:13.85 in his Nissan Bluebird Turbo. Fury's time in the runoff would not be beaten until 1991, ironically by another Nissan, the R32 GT-R. As it was the last year of Group C, Fury's time remains the fastest ever at Mt Panorama by a Group C touring car. Early morning snow on the mountain and the cold conditions were thought to favour the turbo over the V8 powered cars.
* It was the first time in the seven year history of Hardies Heroes that a V8 powered car did not claim Pole Position at Bathurst, and the first time since qualifying first counted for grid positions in 1967 that a V8 had not been on pole.
* The 1984 Hardies Heroes holds the Top 10 shootout record for the most number of marques competing with six with (in order) Nissan, Holden, Ford, Mazda, BMW and Jaguar represented. The record was equaled in both Super Touring races in 1997 and 1998.
* Jaguar made the first of only two appearances in the top ten runoff with Bathurst rookie driver Tom Walkinshaw (the 1984 European Touring Car Champion) qualifying John Goss' V12 Jaguar XJS in 10th place. During qualifying the Jaguar (using one of TWR's Group A engines) had been recorded at 290 km/h (180 mph) on Conrod Straight, the fastest ever by a Touring Car before the addition of Caltex Chase in 1987.
* With three Mazda RX-7's in Hardies Heroes, 1984 was the only time Mazda had the greatest representation of cars in the Top Ten runoff.
- Cars 12, 34 & 77 were involved in a startline accident when the #12 Jaguar XJS had clutch failure at the start. This caused the race to be stopped and for the first time in the races history there was a complete restart. All three cars failed to take the restart.
- Car 18 was involved in a separate accident during the first lap of the initial race being shunted off the track and into a fence on Conrod Straight by another car not heeding the red flags and was also unable to front for the second start.
- Cars 2 & 43 were also involved in a separate incident at the start with both cars bouncing off each other and the #43 also bouncing off the pit wall. #43 was out with engine failure after 15 laps, while #2 crashed at Forrest's Elbow one lap later.
- Barry Naismith, Bathurst 1984/85, pages 73 & 127
- Provisional Pole Position - #05 Peter Brock - 2:14.31
- Pole Position - #15 George Fury - 2:13.850 (record)
- Fastest Group A qualifier - #61 Jeff Allam/Armin Hahne - 2:23.41
- Fastest Lap - #05 Peter Brock - 2:15.13 (lap record)
- Average Speed - 158 km/h
- Race Time - 6:23:13.06 (record)
- Australian Titles Retrieved from www.camsmanual.com.au on 30 March 2009
- 1984 James Hardie 1000 race results Retrieved from www.touringcarracing.net on 4 October 2007
- 1984 James Hardie 1000 race results & Official Programme Retrieved from www.uniquecarsandparts.com.au on 4 October 2007
- Images from the 1984 James Hardie 1000 Retrieved from www.autopics.com.au on 30 March 2009