The CSCC Special Saloons + Modsports series
Dave Brodie at Donington
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Appearing for the very first time at a CSCC event was `70's saloon car legend Dave Brodie.
Brode is fondly remembered for winning so many races in his black Ford Escort mark 1 called 'Run Bay Run' in 1970/71 . At the same time dovetailing into Modsports with both the Gold Seal and then the VRM Lotus Elans before going into the British Saloon car championship and G1 production saloons. Having survived a horrific crash at Silverstone Brode continued to race in many disciplines including Le Mans ,Thundersaloons and even the BTCC before retreating into retirement and concentrating on Brittan Brodie Racing which tunes Mazda road cars in particular.
Now 74 Brode is just as sharp as ever and full of racing stories of the '70s and '80s . His Biography 'Last Train to Cockfosters' is ever expanding and now consists of 4 volumes and a 3-figure price tag but regarded as one of the very best motor sport reads published . In recent years Brode has been restoring 'Run Baby Run' which has hardly been seen in public for over 40 years. Keeping it period but with a few trick features added to help with the handling this famous car is due to reappear in 2018. Brode also has in his stable a very rapid Ford Sapphire Thundersaloon car but for Donington it was his 2wd Ford Sierra RS that was available ,in black of course.
Dave joined the CSCC special saloon regulars at Donington qualifying in bright sunshine on the saturday morning. 8 qualifying laps enabled Dave to set a time of 1 minute 22.9 enough for 12th fastest out of 14. By comparison it was only 3 seconds down on the other comparable Sierra .He latter admitted he was a bit disappointed with his own performance despite a worrying judder at high speed down the back straight. Just as he was getting the lap times down the Sierra coasted into the pit lane with what Dave thought might be a pump failure but turned out to have been just short-fuelled. This was only the second time this year either the driver or car had been on track .
I had the rare opportunity to chat at length with Dave that morning about the old days ,before my time but I asked about the differences between the 2 Elans he raced and why the Capri supersaloon wasnt a success . Brode met a few old friends in the paddock and took interest in the current crop of special saloon cars ,especially the Anderson BMW V8 turbo.
Unfortunatly in the meantime Dave's mechanic had fallen ill and with the race not until 3 he reluctantly decided to pull out of the race and take the guy back home. This was a real shame but it had been a pleasure to have another legend with the CSCC family , another Tony Sugden was once again on safety car on the day.
So we hope to see the Brode out again with the CSCC in 2018 and maybe with 'Run Baby Run'.
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