1970 Australian Touring Car Championship

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1970 Australian Touring Car Championship
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The 1970 Australian Touring Car Championship was a CAMS-sanctioned motor racing title for drivers of Group C Improved Production Touring Cars and Group E Series Production Touring Cars.[1] The title, which was the eleventh Australian Touring Car Championship, began at Calder Park Raceway on 22 March 1970 and ended at Symmons Plains Raceway on 15 November after seven heats.[2]

The 1970 ATCC saw the first championship win for an Australian made car when Norm Beechey drove his Holden Monaro HT GTS350 to victory over the Porsche 911S of team mate Jim McKeown. Finishing in third and fourth place were the Ford Mustangs of Bob Jane and four-time defending champion Ian Geoghegan.[3]

Allan Moffat's victory in the opening round at Calder Park created history as the Canadian became the first non-Australian born driver to win an ATCC race. It was the first of an eventual 32 ATCC round wins for Moffat before his final win in Round 3 of the 1984 championship at Wanneroo Park.

Drivers[edit]

The following drivers competed in the 1970 championship.[2][3][4][5][6][7] The list is not exhaustive.

Entrant Car No. Driver
Geoghegan's Sporty Cars Ford Mustang 1
31
Australia Ian Geoghegan
Peter Manton Shell Racing Team Morris Cooper S 2
21
Australia Peter Manton
Jim McKeown Shell Racing Team Porsche 911S 3
7
Australia Jim McKeown
Bob Jane Shell Racing Team Ford Mustang 3
6
7
27
Australia Bob Jane
Norm Beechey Shell Racing Team Holden HT Monaro GTS350 4
24
Australia Norm Beechey
Ford Escort Mark I Twin Cam 5 Australia Graham Ritter
Scuderia Veloce Porsche 911S 5
6
34
Australia Bill Brown
Chesterfield Filter Racing Porsche 911S 8 Australia Brian Foley
Team Coca-Cola A.M.R. Ford Boss 302 Mustang
Ford XW Falcon GTHO Phase II
9
41
Canada Allan Moffat
C. Brauer Ford Mustang 10
11
Australia Chris Brauer
Indianapolis Speed Shop Chevrolet Chevy II Nova 14 Australia John Kay
Ford Escort Mark I Twin Cam 15 Australia Bob Holden
Volvo 142S 15 Australia Gerry Lister
Chevrolet Camaro SS 17 Australia Bryan Thomson
D. Johnson Holden LC Torana GTR 22 Australia Dick Johnson
Holden EH 23 Australia Herb Taylor
Morris Cooper S 25 Australia John Humphrey
Shell Racing Team Ford Cortina Lotus 33 Australia Malcolm Nancarrow
Ian Hindmarsh Motors Ford Cortina Mark I Lotus 34 Australia Bill Fanning
Morris Cooper 42 Australia Malcolm Brewster
John Lewis Holden LC Torana 64 Australia John Lewis
Graham Collier Morris Cooper S 99 Australia Phil Barnes
Morris Cooper S Australia Ross Ambrose
Ford Escort Mark I Twin Cam Australia J. Bassett
Morris Cooper S Australia Robin Bessant
Morris Cooper S Australia Anthony Bishop
Toyota Corolla Australia Bill Brenchley
Morris Cooper S Australia Ted Brewster
Morris Cooper S Australia Barrie Broomhall
Morris Cooper S Australia Bob Brown
Toyota Corolla Australia Ian Brown
Ford Mustang Australia Tony Calvert
Morris Cooper Australia R. Collinson
Morris Cooper Australia Digby Cooke
Toyota Corolla Australia Robert Davies
Toyota Corolla Australia Bill Evans
Morris Cooper S Australia G. Finen
Morris Cooper S Australia John French
Alfa Romeo 1750 GTV Australia Doug Gardiner
Holden Australia Norm Gown
Ford XW Falcon GTHO Phase I Australia Roy Griffiths
Morris Cooper S Australia Paul Hudson
Morris Cooper S Australia Frank Hunt
Datsun Australia Don Jenkins
Morris Cooper Australia Bruce Jones
Morris Cooper Australia Robert Kent
Ford Escort Mark I Twin Cam Australia Richard Knight
Morris Cooper S Australia Jeff Leighton
Ford Escort Mark I Twin Cam Australia Andrew McComb
Morris Cooper Australia Ken Miller
Holden Monaro Australia Lawrie Nelson
Ford Falcon Australia Colin Noble
Ford Mustang Australia Robin Pare
Holden Australia P. Peters
Holden HT Monaro GTS350 Australia Nick Petrilli
Morris Cooper S Australia Rick Radford
Holden HT Monaro GTS350 Australia Bruce Rae
Holden Australia Garry Rogers
Datsun 1600 Australia John Roxburgh
Morris Cooper Australia Jim Smith
Holden Australia George Spilio
Datsun 1600 Australia Barry Tapsall
Morris Cooper Australia Bob Tweedie
Ford Cortina Australia Norm Watts
Morris Cooper S Australia Tony Watts
Morris Cooper S Australia Phil Webb
Ford Escort Mark I Twin Cam Australia Garth Wigston
Morris Cooper S Australia Robert Wilson
Hillman Imp Australia Roger Withers

Calendar[edit]

The championship was contested over a series of seven heats.[2]

Heat Event title Circuit Location Date Winner Entrant
1 Victoria (Australia) Calder Calder Park Raceway Melbourne, Victoria 22 March Allan Moffat Team Coca-Cola A.M.R.
2 New South Wales Bathurst Mount Panorama Circuit Bathurst, New South Wales 30 March Norm Beechey Norm Beechey Shell Racing Team
3 Victoria (Australia) Sandown Sandown Raceway Melbourne, Victoria 19 April Norm Beechey Norm Beechey Shell Racing Team
4 South Australia South Australian Touring Car Championship Mallala Motor Sport Park Mallala, South Australia 16 June Ian Geoghegan Geoghegan's Sporty Cars
5 New South Wales AJC Trophy Warwick Farm Raceway Sydney, New South Wales 12 July Jim McKeown Jim McKeown Shell Racing Team
6 Queensland Lakeside Lakeside International Raceway Brisbane, Queensland 26 July Norm Beechey Norm Beechey Shell Racing Team
7 Tasmania Symmons Plains Symmons Plains Raceway Launceston, Tasmania 15 November Jim McKeown Jim McKeown Shell Racing Team

Race summaries[edit]

Calder[edit]

Allan Moffat took pole position for the opening round of the championship ahead of Ian Geoghegan and Bob Jane. Geoghegan challenged Moffat for the lead at the first corner but Moffat held the position. Norm Beechey, starting down the order, made his way into fourth place on the first lap before passing both Jane and Geoghegan at the beginning of lap 2. He eventually passed Moffat for the lead before making slight contact with a lapped car, forcing him to pull over to the side of the track and pull the guard off of his front tyre.[3]

Jane had already made a pit stop and Geoghegan lost a rear wheel while Beechey was stopped, leaving Moffat with a sizeable lead. Meanwhile, the Porsches of Brian Foley and Jim McKeown were battling for second place. Beechey had enough pace to catch Moffat and retake the lead on lap 33 before he had to pit to change a front tyre. Moffat cruised to an easy victory from there, with Foley finishing in second place ahead of McKeown, Jane, Bob Brown and Bill Fanning. Beechey returned to the track with three laps left and set a new lap record of 47.7 seconds.[3]

Bathurst[edit]

Ian Geoghegan took pole position with a time of 2:29.9, 1.4 seconds clear of Bob Jane. Allan Moffat completed the front row while Norm Beechey and Brian Foley started on the second row ahead of Jim McKeown and Chris Brauer. Beechey used the straight-line speed of his Holden Monaro to take the lead going up Mountain Straight. After dropping to seventh off the line, Moffat made his way back up to third behind Beechey and Geoghegan during the first lap before both Geoghegan and Moffat passed Beechey going down Conrod Straight. Geoghegan and Moffat pulled away from the rest of the field over the next two laps, while Beechey began to suffer with a misfire. On lap 4 Moffat slowed with a spark plug problem which eventually led to his retirement, giving Geoghegan a break over Beechey and Jane who were battling hard for second place. Nick Petrilli also retired when a piston let go. Jane spun at Forrest's Elbow a few laps later, taking the pressure off of Beechey.[3]

Geoghegan was running the race on worn tyres, as his supplier Firestone did not have new tyres available. As a result, Beechey was able to easily reduce Geoghegan's lead in the second half of the race. At the same time, Phil Barnes began slowing up in his Morris Cooper S, allowing Peter Manton, Bob Holden and Roy Griffiths past.[7] Beechey took the lead going into Murray's Corner on lap 18 and pulled away to take victory. Geoghegan held on for second place while Jane finished third despite his spin. The Porsches of McKeown and Foley finished fourth and fifth respectively while Brauer was the final point-scorer in sixth.[3]

Sandown[edit]

Allan Moffat took his second pole position of the season at Sandown, with Norm Beechey qualifying on the front row ahead of Ian Geoghegan, Bob Jane and Jim McKeown. Beechey took the lead at the start and led all the way to the finish, setting a new lap record in the process. Moffat held second place over Geoghegan until lap 25 when he began having engine dramas, allowing Geoghegan to pass. Jane battled with the Porsches of McKeown and Brian Foley early on before McKeown retired on lap 15, while Foley made contact with a fence and allowed Jane to take fourth place. Foley recovered to finish fifth ahead of Graham Ritter's Ford Escort.[3]

Mallala[edit]

Brian Foley took pole position at the Mallala round, giving Porsche its first pole position in the championship. Jim McKeown and Allan Moffat started the race with wet tyres after rain fell during the morning of the race. Moffat built an early lead before the track started to dry out, which led to the retirement of McKeown due to overheating tyres. Norm Beechey moved into second place and was catching Moffat when his clutch started to slip, allowing Ian Geoghegan and Foley to pass. Moffat's clutch then failed, gifting the lead to Geoghegan. Foley experienced a change in handling which was found to be caused by a broken roll-bar bracket when he made a pit stop. This allowed Beechey to take second place behind Geoghegan while Foley would still manage to finish third. Bill Brown finished fourth ahead of Bob Jane and Peter Manton.[3]

Warwick Farm[edit]

Allan Moffat again qualified on pole position for the fifth round of the championship at Warwick Farm. However, he spun at the first corner and was collected by Ian Geoghegan, while Brian Foley and Bill Brown were also caught up in the incident. Moffat, Geoghegan and Foley all retired from the race while Brown was able to continue. Jim McKeown, after making a good start, had missed the accident and Norm Beechey had moved up to second place. Beechey lost a rear wheel, giving second place to Bob Jane and allowing Brown on to the podium. McKeown took victory, Porsche's first in the championship, ahead of Jane, Brown, Phil Barnes, Chris Brauer and John Humphrey. The victory brought McKeown into championship contention, eight points behind Beechey and five behind Geoghegan with eighteen points still on offer.[3]

Lakeside[edit]

The Lakeside event was marred by a pair of bad accidents. One of the support races saw one driver killed and another seriously injured. Chris Brauer then suffered career-ending injuries in the touring car championship race. Allan Moffat made a poor start from pole position which resulted in Bob Jane and Brian Foley squeezing together. Jane was then pushed into Brauer's car, which left the circuit and slammed into the end of an armco barrier. The race continued with yellow flags at the first corner. Moffat was black flagged for attempting to pass in the yellow flag zone. Ian Geoghegan led the race until lap 7 when he retired with engine problems. Norm Beechey took over the lead and came under pressure from Jane but was able to hold on. Beechey and Jane remained in first and second until the end of the race with Jim McKeown completing the podium. Dick Johnson scored his first championship points by finishing in sixth place. Beechey's victory was enough to secure the title with one race remaining.[3]

Symmons Plains[edit]

Allan Moffat took his fifth pole position of the season, driving his new Ford XW Falcon GTHO Phase II, dubbed the "Super Falcon". Along with Norm Beechey, however, Moffat did not start the race after both drivers blew their engines in practice. The race was held in wet conditions and second-fastest qualifier Jim McKeown took the lead at the start, while Bob Jane lost traction off the start and lost a place to Bryan Thomson. The wet conditions suited McKeown's Porsche and he took a one-lap victory over Thomson with Jane a further lap back in third. The result saw McKeown pass Jane for second place in the championship.[3]

Championship standings[edit]

Points system[edit]

Points were awarded as follows to the top six finishers in each heat.[3]

Position 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
Points 9 6 4 3 2 1

Championship points[edit]

Pos. Driver CAL
Victoria (Australia)
BAT
New South Wales
SAN
Victoria (Australia)
MAL
South Australia
WAR
New South Wales
LAK
Queensland
SYM
Tasmania
Pts.
1 Norm Beechey 8 1 1 2 Ret 1 DNS 33
2 Jim McKeown 3 4 Ret Ret 1 3 1 29
3 Bob Jane 4 3 4 5 2 2 3 28
4 Ian Geoghegan Ret 2 2 1 Ret Ret 21
5 Brian Foley 2 5 5 3 Ret 14
6 Allan Moffat 1 Ret 3 Ret Ret Ret DNS 13
7 Bill Brown 4 3 4 10
8 Bryan Thomson Ret 2 6
9 Phil Barnes 10 4 3
Robin Pare 4 3
Chris Brauer 6 5 Ret 3
12 Bob Brown 5 2
John French 5 2
Tony Calvert 5 2
Peter Manton 14 7 7 6 Ret Ret 6 2
16 Bill Fanning 6 1
Graham Ritter 6 1
John Humphrey 6 Ret 1
Dick Johnson 6 1
Pos. Driver CAL
Victoria (Australia)
BAT
New South Wales
SAN
Victoria (Australia)
MAL
South Australia
WAR
New South Wales
LAK
Queensland
SYM
Tasmania
Pts.
Colour Result
Gold Winner
Silver 2nd place
Bronze 3rd place
Green Points finish
Blue Non-points finish
Non-classified finish (NC)
Purple Retired (Ret)
Red Did not qualify (DNQ)
Did not pre-qualify (DNPQ)
Black Disqualified (DSQ)
White Did not start (DNS)
Withdrew (WD)
Race cancelled (C)
Blank Did not participate (DNP)
Excluded (EX)

Bold - Pole position

References[edit]

  1. ^ Conditions for National Titles, 1970 CAMS Manual of Motor Sport, pages 78-81
  2. ^ a b c Australian Competition Yearbook 1971. North Sydney, New South Wales: Automotive Publications Pty Ltd. pp. 64–85. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Greenhalgh, David; Howard, Graham; Wilson, Stewart (2011). The official history: Australian Touring Car Championship - 50 Years. St Leonards, New South Wales: Chevron Publishing Group. pp. 90–99. ISBN 978-0-9805912-2-4. 
  4. ^ Mallala Races Official Programme. 15 June 1970.
  5. ^ Medley, John (1997). Bathurst, Cradle of Australian Motor Racing. Wahroonga, New South Wales: Turton & Armstrong Pty Ltd. p. 419. ISBN 978-0-9080317-0-2. 
  6. ^ Wilson, Stewart (1988). Holden: The official racing history. Hornsby, New South Wales: Chevron Publishing Group. p. 332. ISBN 0-9590378-4-5. 
  7. ^ a b Wherrett, Peter (May 1970). "Beechey Booms at Bathurst". Racing Car News. Chippendale, New South Wales: Racing Car News Pty Ltd. pp. 26–27. 

External links[edit]