1961 Armstrong 500
|1961 Armstrong 500|
The 1961 Armstrong 500 was an endurance motor race for standard production sedans. The event was held at the Phillip Island circuit in Victoria, Australia on 19 November 1961 over 167 laps of the 3.0 mile circuit, a total of 501 miles (807 km). The race was organised by the Light Car Club of Australia and was sponsored by Armstrong York Engineering Pty Ltd.
It was the second event held in the combined history of the Bathurst 1000, which had begun the previous year with the first Armstrong 500. Interest had waned since the previous year with the entry for this year the lowest in the races history until the fields were restricted to V8 Supercars only in 1995.
Geoff Russell and David Anderson backed up their 1960 class victory in their Peugeot 403 by winning their class again. Bob Jane and Harry Firth were the only combination to complete the full race distance, earning the pair the first of their four outright race wins, although the concept of outright race win would not be officially recognised until 1965. Mercedes-Benz, Studebaker and Renault all took their first class wins.
|Pos.||No.||Entrant ||Drivers ||Car ||Laps |
|1||43||York Motors (Sales) Pty Ltd||David McKay
|2||41||WF Coad||Frank Coad
|3||44||Canada Cycle & Motor Co (Sales) Pty Ltd||Fred Sutherland
|DNF ||42||SP Boyd-Squires||Peter Boyd-Squires
Peter Will 
|1||32||Autoland Pty Ltd||Bob Jane
|2||35||KJ Harper||Ken Harper
|Ford Falcon XK ||161|
|Disq ||33||Stan Jones Motors Pty Ltd ||Ian Strachan
|Holden EK ||134|
|1||24||GLA Russell||Geoff Russell
|2||26||W Coe||Bill Coe
|3||22||Ecurie - BJ Auto Service,
Eiffel Tower Group,
Martins Panel Service
|4||25||Killara Motor Garage||Bob Holden
|5||21||G Reynolds||George Reynolds
|DNF ||27||JP Gray||Charlie Smith
|DNF ||28||EA Clay||Eddie Clay
|1||3||Monash Service Station||Jim Gullan
|2||4||W McB March||Bill March
|3||9||JGR Poulton||George Poulton
|4||10||Autoland Pty Ltd||Bill Jane
|5||15||Alan Coffey Motors||Lou Molina
|6||2||Ian W Robertson||Les Park
|7||11||Viscount Motors Pty Ltd||Alan Caelli
|8||14||KF Lott||Kevin Lott
|9||12||Hilltop Auto||John Brindley
|10||16||Alan Coffey Motors||Peter Coffey
|11||7||HNE Johannesen||Neil Johannesen
|Disq ||8||G Reynolds||Hoot Gibson
Note: There was no outright winner, with only the winners of the four classes being given official recognition and prize money. However the Mercedes-Benz 220SE driven by Bob Jane and Harry Firth was the only car to complete the full 500 mile distance and it is generally considered to be the "winner" of the race.
- Fastest Lap - #32 Jane/Firth - 2:41 - Laps 14 & 121
- Race Time - 8:00:31
- Front cover, Official Programme, 1961 Armstrong 500, Philip Island, Sunday, 19 November 1961, pages 18 & 19
- Tuckey, Bill (1981). "1961: The day the idea nearly died:". Australia's Greatest Motor Race The Complete History. Sydney: Lansdowne Press. pp. 74–81. ISBN 0-7018-1547-7.
- The 1961 Armstrong 500 - A classic canter for hacks, Official Programme,1962 Armstrong 500, Philip Island, Sunday, 21 October 1962, pages 12 to 23
- Entry list, Official Programme, 1961 Armstrong 500, Philip Island, Sunday, 19 November 1961, pages 18 & 19
- Australia's Greatest Motor Race, Second Edition 1990, page 292
- How the Armstrong 500 is run, Official Programme, 1961 Armstrong 500, Philip Island, Sunday, 19 November 1961, page 7
- Australia's Greatest Motor Race, 1960–1989, The First 30 Years
- The Australian Racing History of Ford, © 1989
- The First 15 Years (Hardie-Ferodo 1000, A Pictorial History 1960-1975)
- Wilson, Stewart (1988). "The Official Racing History of Holden". Hornsby: Chevron Publishing Group. ISBN 0959037845.
- The Age, Monday, 20 November 1961, Page 17
- Greenhalgh, David; Thomas B. Floyd; Bill Tuckey (2000). "1961 The day the idea nearly died". Australia's Greatest Motor Race 1960-1999 The first 40 years. Hornsby: Chevron Publishing Group Pty Limited. pp. 102–107 & 451. ISBN 1-875221-12-3.