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Hardie-Ferodo 1000 - Mount Panorama, Bathurst - 1st October, 1973

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Falcon XC Cobra
Bathurst 1973
Torana L34

Number of Laps: 163


Total Race Time: 7:20:6.8
Fastest lap: John Goss, 2:34.8 (143.53 km/h) on lap 2
Classes: Class A - Up to 1300cc; Class B - 1301 to 2000cc; Class C - 2001 to 3000cc; Class D - Over 3000cc

The First "1000"



The 1973 Bathurst classic was run for the first time over a distance of 1000 kilometres (630 miles) rather than 500 miles, due to Australia's conversion to the metric also the first to be run under the new production touring regulations, and there was some doubt as to how many cars would finish, because of the dual threat of more highly stressed components and the extra distance. For 1973, the classes were based entirely on engine capacity: - Class A, 0-1300cc; Class B, 1301-2000cc; Class C, 2001-3000cc; Class D, over 3000cc.

This put the XU-1 Torana’s and the Falcons in the same class, together with the four E49 Chargers . In all, five Falcons and 17 Torana’s faced the starter. To turn back the clock a few years to 1969, co-drivers were required for all the cars because of the extra length of the race. Crewing the Falcons were Allan Moffat and fan Geoghegan in the number one works car, and Fred Gibson and Barry Seton together again in the number two car. In the privately entered Falcons, John Goss was with Kevin Bartlett, John French with Bob Skelton, and Murray Carter with Laurie Nelson.

For the Hoiden Dealer team, Peter Brock was sharing with Doug Chivas, and Colin Bond had Leo Geoghegan as his co-driver. Other strong challengers were Bob Jane and John Harvey, plus Don Holland and Max Stewart, all in XU-1 Torana’s. Race day was warm and sunny, in direct contrast to 1972's pelting rain, and as the flag fell John Goss, who had won pole position, leapt to an immediate lead with Moffat, French and Carter filling the next three places.

Freddie Gibson



Freddie Gibson's was the first Falcon to retire with a cooked engine after less than an hour of racing, his fifth "DNF" (Did Not Finish) in a row. Meanwhile, Goss had increased his lead to 10 seconds over Moffat, with French next, about to be overtaken by Peter Brock and his XU-1. A very rapid pace was being set by the leaders, and after only 90 minutes Goss, Moffat, Brock and Bond were the only drivers on the same lap. At this stage things were looking rosy for the Fords, especially since a number of Torana’s were having troubles with conrods letting to and valves bending.

The problem was that most of the privately-entered Torana’s were using 3.08 to 1 final drives, which meant they had to use a lot of revs to stay with the Dealer Team cars which were using a taller 2.78 to 1 final drive. The Dealers Team Torana’s were pulling 6500 rpm on Conrod Straight for a top speed of 150 mph. To match this, the lower-geared Torana’s would need to have revved to around 7000, a speed of revolution at which point things start to break.

As the race progressed, the Goss/Bartlett car maintained its advantage, but two things happened which changed the face of the race: first, the Torana’s of Bob Jane and George into contact, causing the Garth car to roll right into the path of John Goss. The resultant damage not only wrecked a tyre but also damaged a radiator hose. Goss pitted, changed the tyre and went out again. Secondly, Doug Chivas, who had taken over from Peter Brock in the XU-1, ran out of petrol, and had to push the car unaided up to the pits.

The time lost possibly cost the Holden Dealer Team car the race. Soon afterwards, the Goss/Bartlett Falcon retired. The damaged radiator hose caused severe overheating, ultimately resulting in a well-fried piston. Understandably, Goss was a little savage about the whole thing, especially when remembering that the offending GTR Torana should not have been on the track at all, as it had been towed to the pits earlier in the race and was therefore ineligible to restart.

All this drama put Allan Moffat into a comfortable lead, a lead which held to the finish, giving him his third Hardie-Ferodo victory and "Pete" Geoghegan his first. Toranas filled the following four positions, headed by Brock and Bond, with the Kaleda/Granger Charger sixth, and the only other Falcon to finish, the car of Carter and Nelson, in seventh spot. The Falcon of John French and Bob Skelton, which was well up with the leaders in the early stages, blew its motor to pieces in Pit Straight at about two-thirds distance. It was a very pleasing result for Ford, with the combination of Moffat, Geoghegan and Howard Marsden demonstrating a fine tactical plan and an equally fine execution of that plan.
Please Note: You can sort this listing by simply clicking on the column heading
DRIVER / CO DRIVER(S)
1
Allan Moffat / Ian Geoghegan
Falcon XA GT
D
163
0:2:34.5
2
Peter Brock / Doug Chivas
Torana LJ XU1
D
163
0:2:34.4
3
Colin Bond / Leo Geoghegan
Torana LJ XU1
D
163
0:2:35.4
4
Bob Jane / John Harvey
Torana LJ XU1
D
161
0:2:39.3
5
Bob Forbes / Dick Johnson
Torana LJ XU1
D
154
0:2:41.0
6
Ray Kaleda / Peter Granger
Charger E49
D
150
0:2:45.2
7
Murray Carter / Lawrie Nelson
Falcon XA GT
D
150
0:2:45.9
8
Ray Harrison / Mal Robertson
Alfa 2000 GTV
B
149
0:2:49.8
9
Mel Mollison / Bruce Hindhaugh
Mazda RX3
B
144
0:2:56.0
10
Bernie Haehnle / Wayne Rogerson
Mazda RX2
C
144
0:2:54.9
11
Brian Ovenden / Max McGinley
Charger E49
D
143
0:2:53.5
12
Bob Beasley / Enno Buesselmann
Mazda RX2
C
143
0:2:58.9
13
Geoff Leeds / Jim Murcott
Escort TC
B
143
0:2:54.2
14
John Roxburgh / Doug Whiteford
Datsun 180B
B
143
0:2:59.4
15
Bill Evans / James Laing-Peach
Datsun 1200
A
142
0:3:02.8
16
Lakis Manticas / Peter Lander
Fiat 128SL
A
142
0:3:01.3
17
Herb Taylor / Don Smith
Torana LC GTR
C
141
0:2:53.1
18
Don Holland / Max Stewart
Torana LJ XU1
D
141
0:2:40.5
19
Ray Gulson / Peter Brown
Alfa 2000 GTV
B
140
0:2:52.4
20
Peter Kilmore / Kevin Kennedy
Torana LJ XU1
D
138
0:3:00.8
21
David Clement / Neil Mason
Cooper S
A
136
0:3:08.3
22
John Lord / Peter Janson
Honda Civic
A
134
0:3:11.1
23
Chris Heyer / Peter Mill
Subaru GSR
B
133
0:3:13.8
24
Ken Brian / Noel Riley
Honda Civic
A
131
0:3:10.9
25
Bob Williamson / Chic Audsley
Mini Cooper S
A
131
0:3:14.3
26
Caroline O'Shanesy / Peter Williamson
Mini Cooper S
A
131
0:3:14.1
27
David Frazer / Bob Edgerton
Renault Gordini
A
130
0:3:07.3
28
Bob Holden / Lyndon Arnel
Escort TC
B
129
0:3:01.8
29
Geoff Perry / Brian Reed
Mazda RX3
B
126
0:3:24.8
30
John Symon / Philip Arnull
Datsun 1200
A
125
0:3:24.8
DNF
Gary Cooke / Len Searle
Mazda RX2
C
DNF
not available
DNF
Ron Dickson / Bob Stevens
Monaro HQ GTS
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Herb Vines / Chris Batger
Escort TC
B
DNF
not available
DNF
John Goss / Kevin Bartlett
Falcon XA GT
D
DNF
not available
DNF
John French / Bob Skelton
Falcon XA GT
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Geoff Newton / Cam Richardson
Mini Cooper S
A
DNF
not available
DNF
Graham Ryan / Ray Lintott
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Ray Thackwell / Barry Coleman
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Lynn Brown / Paul Hamilton
Mini Cooper S
A
DNF
not available
DNF
George Garth / Bruce Stewart
Torana LC GTR
C
DNF
not available
DNF
Rod McRae / Tony Niovanni
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Graham Ritter / Tony Farrell
Escort TC
B
DNF
not available
DNF
Leo Leonard / Ernie Sprague
Charger E49
D
DNF
not available
DNF
John Stoopman / Denis Martin
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Jim Hunter / Phil Ward
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Ian Cook / Terry Finnigan
Honda Civic
A
DNF
not available
DNF
Tony Allen / Phil Brock
Charger E49
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Allan Grice / Keith Murray
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Bruce McPhee / Tom Nailard
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Warren Thompson / Rod Dale
Escort TC
B
DNF
not available
DNF
Gary Leggatt / Bob Wedd
Mini Cooper S
A
DNF
not available
DNF
Ray Strong / Ron Gillard
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Des West / Bill Brown
Charger E49
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Fred Gibson / Barry Seton
Falcon XA GT
D
DNF
not available
DNF
Christine Cole / Sue Ransom
Alfa 2000 GTV
B
DNF
not available
DNF
Bob Morris / John Leffler
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available
DNF
John Dellaca / Jon Leighton
Mini Cooper S
A
DNF
not available
DNF
Pat Peck / Darrilyn Huitt
Torana LJ XU1
D
DNF
not available

Penalties:

Harvey/Jane and Carter/Nelson each incurred one minute penalties. Roxburgh/Whiteford incurred two one minute penalties
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