1963 Monte Carlo Rally Plate From Bo Ljungfeldt’s Ford Falcon

This week I took delivery of a 1963 Monte Carlo Rally plate that I recently purchased.  The plate is the actual rally plate that was on the hood of the 1963 Ford Falcon Sprint that was entered by the Ford Motor Company.  The 1963 Falcon Sprint was an early Ford small car fitted with their small block V8 engine.  These were in the days before the Mustang was available.  For 1963, the Ford Falcon V8 engine displaced 260 cubic inches.  The Falcon with rally plate number 233 was driven by the Sweden’s Bo Ljungfeldt.

My New 1963 Monte Carlo Plate From The Number 223 Ford Falcon 

This plate had been hanging on a wall in Maryland since the early 1980s.  The previous owner bought it in an antiques shop in Maryland in the early 1980s.  It is not known how the rally plate got to Maryland before that time.  I am surprised that Ford let this plate get away.

Ford Falcon Sprint In the 1963 Monte Carlo Rally With Rally Plate # 223

For Ford, 1963 was an initial foray into the Monte Carlo Rally with an American car.  Next year Ford returned big time with the 289 cubic inch V8 engine in the 1964 Falcon.  The 1964 Ford Falcon was the fastest car at the Monte Carlo Rally and it won every stage.  However as a result of the handicap placed on large engines, the actual winner of the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally was a Mini Cooper.

The 1963 Ford Falcon #223 On The Monte Carlo Rally Stages

The challenge for me now is to display this rally plate in a suitable manner.  I’m still trying to solve that one.  I have other rally plates displayed on a wall at my place, but I think that this plate deserves special treatment.

If you have any comments or questions regarding this post, then please leave a comment below or you can send me a private email address at the following address: shanna12 at comcast dot net

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Michael Eatough’s Peking To Paris Car Is Taking Shape

Michael Eatough continues to improve his 1966 Mercedes-Benz 230S rally car.  In the near term Michael will be competing in the 2018 Trans America Challenge being held by the Endurance Rally Association.  Further to that Michael has also entered this car in the 2019 Peking to Paris Motor Challenge.  Michael’s strategy is to prepare his car for the Peking To Paris event and use the Trans America Motor Challenge as a long distance road test of the car.  As can be seen from the picture below, this car has been transformed into a very serous endurance rally car.

Michael Eatough’s Mercedes-Benz Rally Car

For the 2018 Trans America Motor Challenge, Michael’s son, Marcus, will be the navigator, while for the 2019 Peking to Paris rally I will be the navigator.  I am very much looking forward to taking part in the Peking to Paris event with Michael Eatough.

The Roof Has Been Painted White To Reduce Heat In The Car

In addition to the changes that can be seen in these photos, there are numerous changes and improvements that have been made to the undercarriage of the car in order to prepare it for the rigors of the Mongolian roads that will be part of the Peking to Paris Motor Challenge.  The image below from “Driving The Impossible” shows a Mongolian “divided highway” – grass between the wheel tracks.

Mongolian “Divided Highway”

For navigation purposes the car has been fitted with both a GaugePilot rally computer and a Monit rally computer.  The GaugePilot is driven by a signal from a wheel sensor while the Monit is driven by a GPS signal.  The GaugePilot is the prime rally computer that I will be using.  Having these two independent odometers provides great redundancy should something happen to either of these units during these long rallies.

In an effort to increase driver comfort and to reduce overall vehicle weight the standard Mercedes-Benz front seats have been replaced by racing seats.  These seats were selected based on body measurements that were submitted to the builder of the seats.

New Seats Have Been Fitted

The improvements and maintenance on Michael Eatough’s car has been done by Owen Warboys, who has done excellent work.  Owen is very careful and makes sure that things are done well.

If you have any questions or comments about this post or the Peking To Paris Motor Challenge, then please leave a comment below or you can send me a private email message at the following address: shanna12 at comcast dot net

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2016 Peking To Paris Book From Endurance Rally Association

I recently acquired another book about the Peking To Paris Motor Challenge.  This book is “Driving The Impossible” by Gerard Brown.  This is the official book documenting the 2016 Peking To Paris Motor Challenge.  The book is available from the Endurance Rally Association.  The book is a very high quality publication with a large format and very durable pages.

Gerard Brown’s Book About The 2016 Peking To Paris Motor Challenge

Gerard Brown is an excellent photographer whose skills are on display on every page.  Page after page is filled with images from this very demanding car rally.  The photos from the Mongolian portion of the rally visually convey how challenging this car rally is.

A Typical Page From Gerard Brown’s Book

As I will be participating in the 2019 Peking To Paris Motor Challenge, I have been carefully reading this book, page by page, in order to understand and be prepared for some of the challenges that await us in 2019.  For that reason, I would particularly recommend this book to other competitors and potential competitors in the Peking To Paris event.  Other endurance car rally participants and enthusiasts will also find this book very interesting. The book can be purchased through the Endurance Rally Association store.  Their website can be reached by clicking on the following link:

http://www2.endurorally.com/store/

If you have any questions or comments about this book or the Peking To Paris Motor Challenge, then leave a comment below or you can send me a private email message at the following address: shanna12 at comcast dot net

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Our 2018 Winter Challenge Plans Fail To Materialize

Several days ago I posted on this website that Frank Beyer and I were going to compete together in this weekend’s Winter Challenge rally that is being held in Barre, Vermont. Alas, that is not going to happen.  I got an email from Frank this morning and he is suffering from the two-bucket disease.  He was on his way to the doctor’s office to get some medical attention.

As a result, we have cancelled out of the rally.  I hope that all of those who take part in this great rally have a wonderful time.  And send me some pictures!!  My email address is as follows: shanna12 at comcast dot net

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2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique Rally Ends With Disappointment And A Gala Dinner

The 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique ended in disappointment.  One of the teams that I was following and hoping to have a good result was Michael Bruns/Frank Westenburger in their 1965 Ford Falcon. Michael and Frank were having an epic rally and were leading the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique after ZR13.  Michael and Frank were in Monaco with only two more competitive stages to go.  I heard from Dan Allven that the engine in the Falcon sounded bad, but the cars were in a “parc ferme” situation so repairs could not be made.  Apparently Michael also was concerned about the engine, but the obvious fact was that they were leading the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique with only two stages, including the famous Col de Turini, to go.  So go they did.  Alas they had a mechanical failure that resulted in a DNF on ZR14.  I have no specific information, but based on what little I do know, I suspect that his engine did fail.  I really feel sorry for those guys.  They almost had it.

Michael Bruns’ Ford Falcon At The 2017 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique

For the final overall standings in the 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique click on the following file.

63-Classement-Final-Officiel

Another team that I was following was Michael Muller and Gerhard Spiesberger in Michael’s 1977 Saab 99 EMS. They had a good rally, even leading the rally after ZR2, eventually finishing in 80th place overall.  The picture below shows how nice it can be  at the Monaco harbor even in early February.

Gerhard Spiesberger & Michael Muller In Monaco After the Rally

The third team that I was following was Peter Fogelberg/Dan Allven in Dan’s 1965 Mustang.  Peter did the driving, while Dan worked the rally computer.  They had some difficulties during the rally and just limped back into Monaco with ignition problems.  It was obvious that they could not finish the rally if they went back out for the last two stages and because of “parc ferme” rules they could not fix the car, even if they could find the parts.  However the rules of the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique allow you to be classified as a finisher if you can check into the final checkpoint and complete all but two stages.  So when the last leg started, Peter and Dan checked out on their assigned out time, immediately parked the car near the control, went home for a sleep, and returned in time to check start the car back up and check into at the final control at 5:02AM, so they would be classified as finishers.  Although missing two stages results in considerable timing scores, at least they were able to say that they finished the 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique.

Dan Allven & Peter Fogelberg After Finishing The Rally

The Rallye Monte Carlo Historque is an interesting rally and it attracts some interesting people.  Dan sent me the following picture taken in the hospitality tent in Valance.  The gentleman standing beside Dan, with Dan’s arm around him, is Kenjiro Shinozuka who won the 1997 Paris-Dakar Rally in a Mitsubishi Pajero.  He was not competing the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique, but you never know about next year.

1997 Paris-Dakar Winner, Kenjiro Shinozuka Was Observing The 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique

At the conclusion of the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique the Automobile Club de Monaco puts on a very spectacular awards dinner.  This is the reason that all of the competitors pack a suit and tie in with their rally clothes for this event.  This is quite a show with entertainment, food, drinks, awards with lots of national anthems, drinks, and socializing with other competitors and drinks.

The Gala Awards Dinner in Monaco

The first year that a competitor competes in the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique the Automobile Club de Monaco gives the competitor and club/rally medallion with a hanging bar with the rally year.  The Automobile Club de Monaco keeps a record of this.  Then every other year that the competitor competes in the rally, the Automobile Club de Monaco will issue an appropriate year bar to add to the original medallion.  The picture below shows that Dan Allven now has three bars on his medallion.

Dan Allven Has Three bars With His Automobile Club de Monaco Medallion

But when it comes to Automobile Club de Monaco bars everybody takes second place to Willy Cave.  Willy has been involved with high level rallying since at least 1955.  Willy is now 92 years old.  When I met Willy Cave at last year’s Rallye Monte Carlo Historique awards dinner, I saw his impressive collection of year bars.  I asked Willy how many he had and he thought that he had 22 year bars.  Now he has one more.  The picture below shows Michael Muller and Willy Cave at this year’s awards dinner.  Willy plans on being back next year.

Michael Muller and Willy Cave At The 2018 RMCH Awards Dinner

If you have any comments or questions about this post or the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique, then leave a comment below or you can send me a private email message at the following address: shanna12 at comcast dot net

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Bruns/Westenburger Move Up The 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique Standings

Michael Bruns/Frank Westenburger in their 1965 Ford Falcon Sprint have moved up the standings in the 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique to second overall after 10 of 14 timed stages.  This is very impressive.

The leaders after the second timed stage Michael Muller/Gerhard Spiesberger in their 1977 Saab 99 EMS have fallen back to the position 68 overall which is still very good and if they continue like this they will have a very good finish.  They have consistently been moving back up in the standings after a small problem caused them to lose some time.

The other team that I have been following, Peter Fogelberg/Dan Allven in their 1965 Mustang continue to have problems but are soldiering on, determined to finish.

Peter Fogelberg/Dan Allven Negotiate A Mountain Curve

The overall standings after 10 stages are shown by clicking on the following file:

044-Classement-Etape-Commune-1ère-Partie

I have also attached a copy of the latest newsletter put out by the Automobile Club of Monaco concerning this year’s Rallye Monte Carlo Historique.

RMCH-2018-Le-Quotidien-N°6-GB

If you have any questions or comments on this post or the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique then please leave a comment below or you can send me a private email message at the following address: shanna12 at comcast dot net

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Muller/Spiesberger Leading The 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique

The Concentration Run of the 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique is complete and I am pleased to say that the leading team is Michael Muller/Gerhard Spiesberger in Michael’s 1977 Saab 99EMS.  This is quite a feat considering that the rally has about 300 contestants!

Navigator Gerhard Spiesberger Standing Beside Their Saab

Michael and Gerhard are experienced rally people who Harald von Langsdorff and myself met at the Baden Classic rally in 2016 and who were our teammates when we won the Team Prize at the Baden Classic in 2017.

Michael Muller’s 1977 Saab 99EMS

I also owned a Saab 99 for a while, so I have additional pleasure in seeing Michael and Gerhard put their Saab at the front of the field.  After the Concentration Run, Michael and Gerhard only had a total score of 80.

Note That The Required Average Speed Was 44 Km/hour In Stages 1 and 2

In the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique typically there are three speed classes Low (basse), Intermediate, and High (haute).  For the Concentration Run all of the cars must compete at the same speed.  As you can see from the photo shown above, all of the cars competed in this year’s Concentration Run timed stages, Zr1 and ZR2, at a speed of 44km/hour which appears to have been the Intermediate Speed.  Last year we competed in the Concentration Run at the High Speed of 46 km/hour.  While just looking at the raw numbers this average does not seem high, however I can assure you that maintaining that average speed all of the time on these crooked and hilly roads in winter conditions is very difficult.  The teams have to be on time, all of the time, as the location of the time controls is unknown, even when you are at one.  All of the timing is done wirelessly at secret locations.

Michael Bruns/Frank Westenburger’s 1965 Ford Falcon Sprint (photo from 2017 RMCH)

Another team that I have been following is the 1965 Ford Falcon Sprint crewed by driver Michael Bruns and navigated by Frank Westenburger.  Michael is another fellow who was part of our team at the 2017 Baden Classic.  After the Concentration Run of this years’ Rallye Monte Carlo Historique Michael and Frank have an excellent score of 330.

Both Michael Muller and Michael Bruns are members of the Historic Rallye & Racing Team from Germany, who put quite an effort in preparation and support of team members at the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique.

Dan Allven & Peter Fogelberg With Their 1965 Mustang

Obviously the other team that I am following is Dan Allven and Peter Fogelberg in Dan’s 1965 Ford Mustang.  Last year I navigated for Dan in the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique.  This year Dan is doing the navigating while he asked Peter Fogelberg to do the driving.  During the Concentration Run of the 2018 Rallye Monte Carlo Historique Peter and Dan apparently had some difficulties.  As they get more experience, then the scores will improve.

Parking Lot Scene In Valence, France After The Concentration Run

The Concentration Run involves driving continuously for more than 24 hours, much the way the Monte Carlo Rallye used to require.  Thus the teams were glad to get to the end of the Concentration Run and to celebrate completion of the Concentration Run.

Some Fellowship And Refreshments In The Valence Hospitality Tent

To see the complete results after the 2018 Concentration Run of the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique click on the following file:

025-Classement-Etape-Concentration

There is still a lot of rallying to do to get to the finish of the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique, so we will see what is in store for the competitors as the rest of the rally unfolds.

If you have any questions or comments about this post or the Rallye Monte Carlo Historique then leave a comment below or send me a private email message at the  following address: shanna12 at comcast dot net

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