The Tour de France 1964 Mustang #85
driven by Peter Harper and David Pollard

Jeffry Harris, John Grant, Wolfgang Kohrn - November,2nd 2003, last updated March 2015

 



The DPK6B licenced Tour de France Mustang #85 finished the famous race second place with Peter Harper and David Pollard as a team. After the race it appeared in press publications witht the #83 of the winning Procter/Cowan car. You can identify it in TDF pictures by its bumper guards up front
Picture above courtesy Ford Media 100 years Motorracing


Bernard Cahier drove DPK6B for a week writing an article for Sports Car Graphics about the performance of this ex-TDF car. Here he pictured the car in front of the Tour d'Eiffel being on the way to a promotion photoshooting 
Picture courtesy Bernard Cahier



The car being staged under the Tour d'Eiffel and attracting a lot of onlookers
Picture courtesy Bernard Cahier


DPK6B with additional front lights under the bumper on its way from Stockholm to Monte Carlo driven by Bosse Ljungfeldt
Picture courtesy Bjornar Djonne




Roy Pierpoint in the "Druids Bend" at Brands Hatch/UK 1965
Picture courtesy Peter Quinn



Roy Pierpoint winning BTCC championship after a team order for Sir Gawaine Baillie and a protest against Brabhams car

The History of #85 (#83 in some later magazine articles)

The DPK6B licenced Mustang started its racing career in August 1964, after being shipped over in July by Ford to Alan Mann Racing Ltd. With the Tour de France starting on 11th of September, Alan Mann had not much time to modify the cars, but Ford wanted to see them winning, so time was no excuse and so was money. Alan Mann got all he needed plus more to get these cars up in front of the racing herd.

This car is the most famous of 4 Tour de France Mustangs, although it was the second placed one. A mystery? Not so. Although clearly visible with the door number #85 during the Tour de France races in 1964, Peter Harper and David Pollards Mustang appeared on most press pictures after the race with the winning number #83. There is a simple reason to that. Ford had ordered the Peter Procter winning TDF car back to Canada to the Comstock racing team immediately after the TDF in September 1964. When media asked for a test drive of one of the Tour de France cars, they simply put the winners door number #83 on the second placed car of Harper that was still available.


John Grant, an ex-mechanic of Alan Mann explained something interesting about the licence plate numbers to me in a recent interview: "Alan always had 3 letters up front and the last letter indicates the year - in this case B for 1964, A was 1963, C 1965 and so on. Those licence plates stay with the car for its lifetime typically."
So this is why we identify the Tour de France cars much better by their licence plates. DPK6B also accumulated in its history a lot more race miles than any of the other ones.

What happened to DPK6B after the Tour de France 1964?
First it went into the hands of Bernard Cahier. Bernard knew Alan very well and had been in his shop before, so once he met Alan at the TDF, he asked him for a test drive and Alan left him the car for a full week. His experience with the car appeared in a further Sports Car Graphic article in early 1965, that is published on our clubsite.


Aside from this article Bernard was kind enough to share some personal pics with us before his death that show Peter Ustinov and Jean-Louis Trintignant with the car, while Bernard visited the film studios of Bologna plus pictures with Jo Schlesser and his son posing with the TDF Mustang. Other pictures show the car under the Tour d'Eiffel and with a nice lady as co-driver.

John Grant tells us more about the later history: "Roy Pierpoint drove the Harper car in the other races in 1964. This second car was sold to Roy Pierpoint in December 1964 and raced by him in 1965, where he won the BSCC. We turned this Ex-TDF Mustang into a race car for Roy Pierpoint at the end of 1964 and I worked on it later. Still Bosse Ljungeldt drove it as well in some races, especially the Monte Carlo rally 1965 starting in Stockholm and driving almost 4500 km down to Monte Carlo.
Alan Mann remembers the tour to Monte Carlo with them flashing the oncoming trucks with the 8 headbeams/rallye lights, once those flashed them for the white standard headlights.



Jochen Neerpasch drove it as well at the Nuerburgring in 1965.

"We blew a few engines and had to replace them", says John. "Indeed Ford changed the connecting rods design upon our advice, because" we blew so many Hi-Po engines. They made an additional rib on the lower part close to the bearing.

Roy won the British Touring Car Championship in this ex-TDF-Mustang. I remember that indeed Roy only won the BTCC championship, because Alan Mann called Sir Gawaine Baillie in the pits at the final race. Sir Gawaine was leading with Jack Brabham following. Roy has had an accident and smashed his car at Furnace corner and lost 10 places and Roy would have lost the championship, but Sir Gawaine followed the pits order - although he was not happy about it - but he got a nice wrist watch from Alan as a reward.

Brabhams car was protested by Alan Mann and when they removed the cylinder head of his car, they found triple valve springs, one of it being used as a dampener. That was not allowed back then, so the protest went through and Roy won the championship.

With Group 5 coming out the next year, Roy fitted a Paxton supercharger, which I got him from the States. He did a couple of races with this before starting on the Falcon, which was more lightweight and dominant.

He sold the TDF Mustang later to a business man called Paul Rackham from Norfolk who painted it a bright Yellow with black stripes and Roy drove it with Rackham in a round of the European touring car championship at Snetterton in Norfolk. But it blew its engine in the first hour. I know Rackham drove the car later in a few club races after the engine was rebuilt, but I don't know what happened then.

Roy went on with his Falcon." Jeffry Harris - co-author of this page and a big enthusiast of the Tour de France Mustangs has spent years with me in tracing down these cars. Jeffrey got in touch with Paul Rackham and obtained a few pics of the ex-TDF car while being raced by Paul and his driver Teddy Savory.


Teddy Savory drives Paul Rackhams ex-TDF and Pierpoints BTTC championship Mustang - Picture courtesy Fred Hinton and Jeffry Harris


Teddy Savory and Paul Rackham standing next to their Mustang racer.
Picture courtesy Fred Hinton and Jeffry Harris

Jeffrey tells us: "Acc. to Paul Rackham he sold the car after this season to a guy in Liverpool, who raced the car as well in club races and later killed himself in the car. This DPK6B Mustang is most probably written off and gone forever."

The last picture of DPK6B, the picture description says 1968 


Chris Turner finally sent us his pics of the end of DPK6B with a sad story...
"It happened during a BRDC Club meeting at Silverstone on 28 April 1968. From reports of the accident, the driver, Robin Smith suffered a heart attack while at high speed on the long club straight prior to Woodcote corner. I remember the car continued without any reduction of speed  or attempt to take the corner. As an un-educated guess I think the car hit the earth bank at over 100mph."

"It seems strange looking back that the car was left for anyone to look around, unlike today when it would have been covered over. At the time I was only 18 and it was the first time I had seen anyone killed in a crash. Taking these pictures seems rather morbid now but I suppose there was a fascination in how a car that I always thought massively strong and safe could be reduced to so little. I'm glad now that i kept them if you can make use of them in your history of the car." Chris Turner

Editors note: Alan Mann has been approached by several auctioneers in the past to verify ex-TDF Mustangs. Once they were assured that they can be clearly identified by some specific "welding signatures" nobody ever turned back with a car to be inspected.

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