Had a great day Saturday at Prescott Hill for the 70th Anniversary of Cooper Car Company. The sun was out for the huge collection of Cooper racing cars from all formulas including Formula Junior, F3, F2, F1 and the old 500’s. Plenty of action on the hill too with most of the 500cc cars running along with a selection of others including a handful of Minis, Cooper’s T23, T39, T43, T59, T82 and a monstrous Cooper Daimler V8. John Rhodes, Paddy Hopkirk and Mike Cooper were present and all on good form. For display we took with us the Jim Russell Cooper MkX and the Mini Cooper S ‘GPH 1C’.
John Rhodes, Mini racing legend, explains his driving style in this short clip from the late 1960’s. The cars were setup for chronic over-steer. By lifting off Rhodes could encourage the rear to slide before mashing the throttle and pulling out of the corner.
“One thing he used to ask for if he was driving one of our cars was that it had to have violent oversteer. We’d use the strongest bumpstops on the back so that as soon as you’d turned into a corner it sat straight on the bumpstops which would put you straight into oversteer which he loved.” – Harry Ratcliffe, British Vita Racing Team
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