What was SupaTura ?
The BRSCC launched the British Saloon Car Championship for 1958 , the beginning of we now call the hugely popular British Touring Car Championship. The first 2 seasons were for 4 classes of race-prepared Saloon and in line with `Appendix J to the International Sporting Code` for Group 3 `Special Touring Cars.
For 1960 however the rule book was thrown out of the window for the Championship with the most liberal set of `rules` ever used in its long history to date. For 1960 only 1-litre Saloons would compete and could run any modifications apart from having to retain the cars original engine block and no supercharging.
The result was remarkably fast small family saloons performing giant-killing acts on the non-championship 1959-spec bigger saloons that were allowed to compete in the same races. It was just a one-season wonder as for 1961 the BRSCC brought the rule book back in and adopted Group 2 homolgation rules. The rest was history once the Mini Coopers and Lotus Cortinas followed but the 1960 season had sparked off a new era of modified Saloons that would develop at club level as the decade worn on.

1960 SupaTura

- when legally modified saloons were just what the Doctor ordered...

Doc2

The way it was , George `Doc` Shepherd`s highly-tuned 994cc Austin A40 neck and neck with the big boys. At Brands he and Jack Sears
( Jag ) both set joint fastest lap such was the parity of performance.

How modified was Doc`s A40 ?

`This year Doctor Shepherd`s Austin A40 has been modified as far as the regulations for the BRSCC SupaTura Championship allow - which means that apart from outward appearance
it bares very little resemblance to the standard model. Aluminium doors , a glass-fibre bonnet and Perspect side and rear windows effect a considerable weight saving...in the engine department about the only thing standard is the dip-stick ! The crankcase has been machined to take a special BMC `Formula Junior` crankshaft and cylinder head `back ported` by Harry Weslake is used. extensivley modified and lightened valve gear is operated by a special BMC `Formula Junior` camshaft. Special pistons giving a capacity of 998cc ,connecting rods and SU carberettors and oil cooler all play their part in a unit which produces over 80 bhp at 7300rpm and gives this 12 1/2 cwt A40 a maximum speed of 110 mph.` ( the engine having been tuned by Don Moore , who was also the cars entrant )
from `Modified Motoring` Autumn 1960.
The stats mean the car weighed 635 kgs and gave 126 bhp per tonne. To put that into perspective the standard A40 gave only 44.5 bhp per tonne ! with a modest 34 bhp and 0 to 60 mph time of over 35 seconds.

"Taking Paddock faster than the Jaguars and then outbreaking them at Druids hairpin and nipping past on the inside...yes i saw the crowd waving...they do seem to like that sort of thing"
Doc Shepherd

Shepherd

( fastest lap Shepherd 1m 06.0 ) 9 SupaTura starters

STAR IN A REASONABLY PRICED CAR...

speedwell

The tuning boom for the new Mini was taking off and companies like Speedwell and Downton were at the forefront racing their own cars to advertise their tuning parts. Speedwell had already tasted success with John Sprinzell`s A35 and one of its Directors was works BRM Grand Prix driver Graham Hill ( future world champion and all round legend ) . He raced this deceptively modest looking Mini ( pictured in miniature version ) at Brands Hatch round 7.

( fastest lap Bailey) 13 SupaTura + 8 larger engined Saloon starters

( fastest lap Young ) 16 SupaTura starters

( fastest lap Bailey) 10 SupaTura + 3 larger engined Saloon starters

( fastest lap Sears ) 11 SupaTura + 9 larger engined Saloon starters

( fastest lap Sears + Shepherd ) 14 SupaTura + 11 larger engined Saloon starters

( fastest lap Powell 1m 05.6 ) 5 SupaTura + 7 larger engined Saloons

A40

CHAMPIONSHIP TABLE :

POS DRIVER CAR POINTS
1 DOC SHEPHERD AUSTIN A40 40
2 JOHN YOUNG FORD ANGLIA 30
3 ED LEWIS AUSTIN A40 13
4 JOHN ALLEY AUSTIN A40 6
ANDREW HEDGES AUSTIN A40 6
6 B.D. WHITTAKER AUSTIN A35 4
7 GEOFF WILLIAMSON AUSTIN A40 2
PADDY GASTON AUSTIN A40 2
JIMMY BLUMER MINI 850 2

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