Flashback Friday 2012: BriSCA F1 Stockcars Through The Ages (Part 5)

Flashback Friday: A weekly article brought to you from the vaults of top BriSCA photographer Colin Casserley and this week, help from Derek Hibbs and Rick Young.

Keeping with the Regions theme, we focus on Yorkshire drivers this week. A county that has seen it’s fair share of title winners and also drivers who turned out week in week out for the enjoyment of the sport.

1. Moving to South Yorkshire and no Flashback Series would be complete without a mention Of Willie Harrison (2), The Harrison family have been associated with Stock car racing ever since the sport came to the UK back in 1954. This photo is from Northampton back in 1970 and sees the familiar Harrison paint scheme on the ex Aubrey Leighton (42) machine.

Willie Harrison 2. Photo Colin Casserley

2. It’s a myth that tracks in the old days didn’t get muddy, this photo of Willie Harrison from the early 1970s in his Tony Neal (100) built car at Long Eaton is proof that wet shale was as bad back then.

Willie Harrison 2. Photo Colin Casserley

3. The Faldings have been around stock car racing almost as long as the Harrisons. This is Rod Falding (36) at Coventry in 1970.

Rod Falding 36. Photo Colin Casserley

4. Marian Palmowski (383) was originally from Poland, but made Rotherham his home. He raced from 1959 up to 1983, this is one of his cars from the mid 1960s.

Marian Palmowski 383. Photo Derek Hibbs

5. He is seen here at Brands Hatch’s Festival of Speed in the early 1970s.

Marian Palmowski 383. Photo Colin Casserley

6. Phil Smith (109) didn’t stay white top for long, the Huddersfield driver is seen here at Northampton in 1974.

Phil Smith 109. Photo Colin Casserley

7. Phil attained red grade for much of his racing days and won the British Championship in 1994. This photo is from Rochdale in the late 70s.

Phil Smith 109. Photo Colin Casserley

8. Ken Hopes (64) at Northampton behind the wheel of an ex Phil Smith car.

Ken Hopes 64. Photo Colin Casserley

9. The number is the same, but the name is Different! Kev Smith (64) became a fan favourite with his no nonsense style of driving. The former resident of Hudderrsfield now lives down under in New Zealand, much to the relief of several drivers!

Kev Smith 64. Photo Rick Young

10. Mike Close (199) began racing at the same time as his cousin Norman Close (200) in 1971 and did most of his early racing close to his home in the Yorkshire Dales. This photo is from Aycliffe in 1972, the following year and a new Chevy powered car Mike began to gain more success that would eventually bag him a World, European, British and National point title.

Mike Close 199. Photo Colin Casserley

11. Bryan “Thug” Thorn (373) was a travelling companion of Gordon Smith (293). The Halifax duo were always worth the admission money wherever they went.

Bryan Thorn 373. Photo Colin Casserley

12. Another Rotherham driver who raced on and off for many years was John Thorpe (367). he rapidly rose through the grade and was novice of the year in 1974, although he found the Northampton wires on this occasion.

John Thorpe 367. Photo Colin Casserley

13. John back at Northampton as a red roof and in one of his many cars he raced throughout the years, which also saw him appear as #4 and #433.

John Thorpe 367. Photo Colin Casserley

14. Huddersfield’s Nigel Hardy (317) tangles with Malc Dobson (131) at Rochdale.

Nigel Hardy 317 and Malc Dobson 131. Photo Colin Casserley

15. Hardy was a rugged driver who gave no quarter and was a dab hand at using the bumper. He is seen here battling with fellow Yorkshireman John Jebson (384) at Northampton. Jebson is driving an ex Roger Hollingshead car but is best remembered for his “Untouchable” creation that will be part of a thread in a few weeks time.

Nigel Hardy 317 and John Jebson 384. Photo Colin Casserley

16. Two more Yorkshireman battling at Northampton in the mid 1970s. Dave Hodgson (272) and and Frankie Wainman Snr (212) travelled far and wide during there racing days.

Dave Hodgson 272 and Frankie Wainman snr 212. Photo Colin Casserley

See Part 1 HERE, Part 2 HERE, Part 3 HERE, Part 4 HERE, Part 6 HERE, Part 7 HERE and Part 8 HERE.

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