Race Report: Rufforth, 1 April 1972


Race Report: Rufforth, 1 April 1972

With Shell F3 Championship rounds at Oulton Park on Friday and Mallory Park on Monday it was no great surprise when only 13 cars made it to the wilds of Rufforth to contest this Lombank North Central event. The numbers were further reduced when Val Musetti took his Royale home before the race and Ken Mackintosh’s ex-Steve Thompson Ensign never left the paddock. Practice saw Neil Ginn who had some Rufforth experience from his F Ford days take pole position in his Ensign from the similar car of Rikki von Opel and Andy Sutcliffe’s GRD. In trouble was the second Iberia Ensign of Mike Walker who had to start from the back after a flat tyre restricted him to only three practice laps. Damien Magee had reverted to a Rowland engine for his Palliser after problems with the Novamotor unit he had used at Oulton Park.

It was raining as the cars formed up on the grid and as the flag fell von Opel made a slow start, holding up team-mate Walker in the process, so it was Sutcliffe who lead from Magee and Ginn. Making storming progress was Tony Brise in the Brabham BT38 and by the time the cars reached Runway Bend just before the end of the opening lap Brise was in first. The Brabham began to pull away from von Opel and Sutcliffe who were merrily holding each other up, behind them it was Walker from Magee and Ginn (who had spun). On lap 5 Sutcliffe passed von Opel at York but was promptly overtaken again at Acomb, Walker moved in and passed Sutcliffe only to find himself being assisted out of the race by a punt up the rear from Sutcliffe in the Esses.
Onto the last lap and Brise’s lead was being quickly eroded by von Opel as the track dried out, the Ensign tried to pass the Brabham at York but Brise resisted, von Opel tried again at Acomb this time making contact with Brise, both cars spun off, von Opel continuing but Brise having trouble restarting his engine. A very surprised Sutcliffe found himself the winner from von Opel, Ginn and Magee.



Race Report: Rufforth, 1 April 1972

Race Heat 1

1 Vittorio Brambilla

Birel Alfa Romeo 20:09.40

2 Fabrizio Noe

Lotus-Ford 69 20:09.50

3 Luigi Fontanesi

Tecno-Ford 20:13.10

4 Carlo Franchi (Gimax)

De Sanctis-Alfa Romeo 20:23.40

Race Heat 2

1 Giovanni Lo Voi

Brabham-Ford BT28 15:05.00

2 Adelmo Fossati

Brabham BT28 15:05.00

3 Patrice Compain

Martini-Ford MW7 15:21.00

4 Manfred Möhr

Lotus-Ford 15:34.10

5 Marcello Gallo

Brabham BT28

Race Final

1 Vittorio Brambilla

Birel Alfa Romeo 30:44.30 144.318

2 Marcello Gallo

Brabham BT28 30:44.34

3 Fabrizio Noe

Lotus-Ford 69 30:45.10

4 Adelmo Fossati

Brabham BT28 30:55.40

5 Patrice Compain

Martini-Ford MW7 31:08.00

6 Carlo Franchi (Gimax)

De Sanctis-Alfa Romeo 31:11.50

7 Manfred Möhr

Lotus-Ford 31:59.60

8 Giovanni Lo Voi

Martini-Ford MW7 31:08.00