Jeremy and his navigator, Angelica Fuentes Garcia, will be departing from Holden Vintage & Classic next Tuesday to take part in 'Tour Ireland'. This event is new for 2015, taking place from the 12th to the 15th of May and will tackle some sensational closed road special stages. � From the tour HQ in Llandudno, North Wales, they will visit the Great Orme and Anglesey circuits as well as completing at least four closed-road stages in Ireland.
Angelica is an experienced navigator so, with this in mind, the pressure is on Jeremy to live up to expectations!� Angelica's experience includes co-driving in the Panamericana Rally 20 times (winning as co-driver in 2006) and navigating for the Pikes to Peak Hill Climb in Colorado.
They will be competing in Jeremy's ex works Sunbeam Tiger, which has very recently (only finished today!!) undergone a full restoration. � Previously the Tiger has competed in the Geneva Rally 1964, Tulip Rally 1965, Monte Carlo Rally 1965, Alpine Rally 1965 and the Monte Carlo Rally 1966. Click here for more History on the Tiger.
The team are really up against it time wise. They only have the weekend to familiarise themselves with the car, learn to work together as a team and sort out their new Gauge Pilot navigation system!
Follow their progress – we will be providing daily updates and pictures on our Blog.
Jeremy’s model (The AHP 294B) features the original Ford 4.2 Litre V8 engine. It made its debut at the 1964 Geneva Rally, just three months after it was registered, where ‘Tiny’ Lewis and Barry Hughes took the controls and edged the car to victory. Heralded as the most campaigned of the seven Tiger models, highlights for this particular car include being driven by Maurice Gatsonides in the 1965 Monte Carlo Rally, as well as by Peter Harper in the 1966 Monte. Other successes include a spell of endurance racing at the Zandvoort circuit, shattering Dutch National Records in three, six, 12 and 24 hour categories where it averaged a speed of 75.47mph over the course of 23 hours, despite regularly pulling into the pit lane to be topped up with water. The car so impressed Gatsonides that he christened it “Thunderbus”.
In 1965, AHP was forced to retire from the Alpine Rally when the car caught fire. A rear brake shoe failed and the resulting debris damaged the hydraulics sending a jet of highly flammable brake fluid onto a hot brake drum with inevitable results. In the ensuing blaze, all the fire extinguishers were used up to quell the flames and the resulting damage is part of the reason why the car was returned to the Competition Department at Rootes for a full rebuild.
Despite lying unused in the 70’s & 80’s and being prepared for classic rallying in the early 1990’s, a full (FIA spec) rebuild by HardyHall Restorations was needed. AHP is now in fine fettle and still retains many period competition features including the 288 limited slip diff, the long-range saddle tank fitted in the boot, quick-rack steering, the original works hardtop badged “1966 Marathon de la Route”, period Halda rally instruments and the fly-off handbrake specially made for Peter Harper to aid his cornering technique. Indeed all the interior trim is original, including the driver’s seat which was specially tailored to suit Peter Harper’s long-shanked frame. The car has undergone restoration and Jeremy is looking forward to competing in it at the Tour Britannia Race Series this month.