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Old 6 May 2009, 14:51 (Ref:2456530)   #1
HC Racing
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Austin/MG Metro/Metro Turbo Challenge (split from Grp A Turbo thread)

Very rarely do I read a 13 page thread on a forum!.. I have been amazed my the passion and knowledge of the members contributing to this thread.

Although in the 80's I was a spotty teenager i did not quite get the Metro in touring cars bug in their day, are there any videos/dvds to buy with them racing?

I have been tuning the A series for almost 2 decades and the ex BTCC and challenge cars were an amazing site.

I own and race an ex Challenge car and are so inspired by the Computervision cars, shame there are not more detailed pictures of the cage and suspension pick ups etc.

I not this thread is slightly off topic but I have such an informative time reading it.

Me at work below



Jon. www.hc-racing.co.uk
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Old 6 May 2009, 18:31 (Ref:2456686)   #2
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Glad you enjoyed the read Jon, and welcome to Ten-Tenths!

I think the Group A era is quite a passion for a lot of us - me in particular the MG Metro Turbos and Rover Vitesse. Others are keen on the other marques of course - but I don't really know why!

Am I right in thinking your ex-Challenge Metro is one of the old Enterprise Racing entered cars? I certainly recall seeing that livery all those years ago, or is that something that you have applied more recently?
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Old 6 May 2009, 20:33 (Ref:2456756)   #3
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No mine I am not too sure about the full history, it has been the the Drayton Manor MG Metro Cup for many years and the Pheonix championship before that, I was run by a chap called Chris Hughes who lives and breaths Metros in Motorsport.

It has alot of the old challenge mods, fuel filter, factory modded plenum etc, etc.. No rust and never a road car.

I do know of a running Enterprise car though, my team mate!.. Jim Dunkley bought one of the Enterprise cars last year, sadly he repainted it blue, I was working on it only 2 weeks ago at Mallory!

To be honest the enterprise cars were good in there day but times have changed and IF you have the time and money many improvements can be made.

The other Enterprise Metro still in white was on Ebay loads of times a few months back, that was the nicer one!

Not sure if this link will work but this is the old enterprise car.

http://picasaweb.google.co.uk/Peterr...54103573826770

Jon.
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Old 8 May 2009, 14:24 (Ref:2457992)   #4
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Glad you enjoyed the read Jon, and welcome to Ten-Tenths!

I think the Group A era is quite a passion for a lot of us - me in particular the MG Metro Turbos and Rover Vitesse. Others are keen on the other marques of course - but I don't really know why!
I certainly remember the Challenge cars, though I'm not sure if I've got any pics- I'll have a look.

From memory, was there more than one series- ie a British one and possibly a European one? I recall the Metro Challenge usually being one of the support races at the Silverstone TT meeting (usually Metro Challenge and Prodsaloons, on race day with FF1600 plus maybe one other race on the Saturday?), and the entry list featuring quite a few overseas -especially French- drivers, as well as the UK Metro regulars.

Some very well-known names appeared in them- Tim Harvey and David Leslie (in an Ecurie Ecosse-entered car?) amongst others.
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Old 9 May 2009, 15:27 (Ref:2458603)   #5
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There certainly was an MG Metro International Challenge Championship in 1986. It may have supported higher level series at some of the tracks it visited, but it was also a standalone too. The series was run by Roger Dowson Engineering and was the only one make championship endorsed by FISA at the time... how times have changed... almost everything's one make today.

That year it visited :

o Donnington on April 5/6
o Nurburgring on July 12
o Phoenix Park on August 31
o Spa Francorchamps on September 14
o Le Mans Bugatti on September 28
o Montlhery on October 11.

Among the more well known drivers were mini/metro stalwarts such as Dave Carvell, Peter Baldwin, Chris Lewis and Dave Loudon. There were quite a few French drivers including Claude Boissy, Dominique Lenaert, Carlo Gomez, Andre Lechat, Didier Belz, Bernard Guillou and Jacques Lacoste. At the Phoenix Park event that year, Michael Cullen and Irish rally Legend Billy Coleman guested... in fact I think Cullen did a few more rounds of the series too. I noticed that Lawrence Bristow and the evergreen Tony Dron were entries as well. I wonder though, were those cars turbocharged or not. I know its a long time ago, but casting my mind back to the event in the Phoenix Park, I'm not sure that they were you know.
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Old 9 May 2009, 15:38 (Ref:2458609)   #6
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There was a European Challenge too.
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Old 16 May 2009, 20:46 (Ref:2463638)   #7
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Hi all

I'm new to the forum, this thread made very interesting reading

I am trying to trace some history on my metro race car

Its apparently an ex works car, its certainly been very well prepared in the past, and has the exhaust exiting the sill as per the ones seen in this thread. I cant see any chassis numbers stamped anywhere however.

I bought it from a chap called David Spencer, he raced it in the MG Metro Cup last year. number 50c

I am hoping that somebody may be able to help me find out what its original race colours would have been, as I am restoring it at the moment and it would be nice to put it back in 80's livery. the current paint scheme is a few years old by the look of it, but not original.

If anybody has seen it racing anywhere, previous drivers names or even photos would be great

I have attached some photos of how it was when I bought it.

Cheers, James
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Old 19 May 2009, 07:41 (Ref:2464955)   #8
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Its apparently an ex works car, its certainly been very well prepared in the past, and has the exhaust exiting the sill as per the ones seen in this thread. I cant see any chassis numbers stamped anywhere however.
That poses a question- how were the Metro Challenge cars supplied. Did teams buy a Metro from a dealer and convert it using a kit of parts bought from Austin Rover, or did AR sell bare shells and parts to build up the cars from scratch?

Just a thought: Austin Rover did run a 'guest/celebrity' car in the series at one point- was it run in-house or farmed out to one of the teams? It might explain a reference to an 'ex-works' chassis though
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Old 19 May 2009, 08:10 (Ref:2464971)   #9
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Weren't the cars built by Roger Dowson Engineering ?
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Old 19 May 2009, 09:41 (Ref:2465024)   #10
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Weren't the cars built by Roger Dowson Engineering ?
The Group A cars yes, but I think they mean the one make challenge cars?
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Old 19 May 2009, 09:45 (Ref:2465027)   #11
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Roger Dowson Engineering ran the one make series and were involved in quite a lot of commissioning work with Austin Rover at the time, so I had assumed they built the cars or the kits for the cars.
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Old 19 May 2009, 09:54 (Ref:2465032)   #12
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By jove I think you're right come to think of it! Dowson did build cars for the challenge as well
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Old 19 May 2009, 12:50 (Ref:2465118)   #13
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I own and race an ex Challenge car and are so inspired by the Computervision cars, shame there are not more detailed pictures of the cage and suspension pick ups etc.


Jon. www.hc-racing.co.uk
Is this you in 2007? http://www.flickr.com/photos/2366150...7615313606845/

BTW, I raced in that Championship back in 93.

The Challenge cars weren't built to Group A spec of course so it may be an idea to split them out from the Group A thread. They do deserve a thread of their own simply because of the drivers who raced them, if nothing else!
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Old 19 May 2009, 19:45 (Ref:2465322)   #14
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OK.
If I remember correctly, the MG Metro Turbo Challenge (c 1987?) grew out of the MG Metro challenge for 1300cc non turbo MG Metro's. This too was the new Champoinship to replace the 1275GT Championship c 197-?) which was the 'top' class of the Leyland sponsored Mini Challenge which included the original Mini Se7en's (850cc) and Miglia's (1000cc).
The cars could be built up from new bodyshells (as could either of the Mini clases), but were often built out of road cars as this would be cheaper, to a very tight set of rules originated by the Mini Se7en Racing Club, with series scrutineer Mike Garton.
When the MG Metro championship was upgraded to the MG Metro Turbo championship ARG Motorsport (as they were called that week) released a kit of part to upgrade the normally aspirated MG Metro to Metro Turbo Challenge specification. And again, if I remember correctly, this upgrade was basically engine, all other parts remained as before.
I am also sure that, as well as building, maintaining and running the Computervision backed Group A Metro Turbo cars, Roger Dowson Engineering also ran the celebrity car in the MG Metro Turbo Challenge too. (They also continued this association with MG Rover Sport by running the celebrity Rover in subsequent championships).
[ I do think I'm right in this (but may be wrong!) as the picture in my avatar is my 1982 /83 Mini Se7en, plus I spent a great deal of time in upgrading a MG Metro Challenge car to Turbo specification for the 1987 season! (However, time & the mind do play interesting tricks as you get older...]
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Old 20 May 2009, 08:22 (Ref:2465531)   #15
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Seems a decent summary there VIVA!!

I seem to remember that there was also an Austin Metro challenge prior to the MG badged version in '81/82. This may have come in between the 1275 series you mentioned and the start of the MG series? I think John Barnard entered the series at some point or another?!!!

Did BCA sponsor both series for a while?
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