Bigger Beasty!

Today we are running a post which should have gone live three weeks ago and looks at one of the cars that has proved to be a big star of the hillclimb scene during the first part of the 2014 season.

Jos Goodyear GWR Raptor

Jos Goodyear wheel-wagging in the newly boosted GWR Raptor (thanks to Everley Photography).

 

The most eagerly anticipated new project of the year made its debut at Gurston Down a few weekends ago and attracted an awful lot of attention both in the paddock and on the hill.

Ever since the first car debuted back in 2010 at Doune Hillclimb in the hands of the highly talented future Scottish Champion Lee Adams, the GWR Raptor chassis have proved to be the best handling chassis ever seen on the hills with drivers achieving giant-killing results all over the country.

Originally designed specifically for the 1600cc Racing Car Class, over the winter Jos Goodyear’s chassis number 2 has been converted for action in the 2000cc Racing Car Class and is now a very different beast to the cars previously seen.

Having seen the mighty performances of Alex Summers’ DJ Firehawk during the past couple of years, Team Goodyear decided to go down the supercharged route with a Mark Fisher built 1400cc Hayabusa and DTA mapping.

Constructor Graeme Wight Jnr of GWR has worked incredibly hard to install all of the ancillaries and plumbing that boost the basis Suzuki motor to well over 400bhp into the very confined space of the Raptor’s engine bay, and lots of clever solutions have had to be found.

One of the main concerns with adding a couple of hundred horsepower and installing a chunk of additional kit to such a beautiful handing machine was that the car’s beautiful balance would be upset. This is not expected to be a major issue in this instance however as the installation has been completed in such a way that, by converting to off-board starting and clever engineering, the car is still very similar in weight to its original spec.

 

And how does the car look on track? The answer is… It looks incredible! Jos was immediately on the pace at Gurston, even getting within a whisker of matching class pace-maker Alex Summers in Saturday practice. The car is clearly very slippery as well, as some incredible trap speeds testified. Over the weekend Goodyear blasted the little car through the Hollow trap at 136mph and managed a stunning 147mph over the finish line!

Despite a small niggle in the opening shoot out of the day when the charge pipe popped off of the blower (an issue which was easily fixed by re-seating a Wiggins Clamp), the weekend’s results were as impressive as we have come to expect from 1600cc Raptors. A new 2-litre Class Record, top-qualifier for the opening Run Off, and fifth best time of the day overall is well above even the highest expectations.

Huge credit must go to 2001 & 2002 BHC winner Graeme Wight Junior, he has done it again and produced a quite sensational little racing car, very well done to Graeme and all involved in creating a bigger beasty!

Since this post was written Jos and the car have torn up the hillclimb formbook and have dominated the 2-litre Racing Car Class as well as giving the big boys a seriously hard time. Check out this footage of a sub-Outright Hill Record run at Doune Hillclimb last week for evidence of the pace that this combination is now capable of….

 

To sum up just how popular our sport can be, this video was posted on youtube Monday and, as this paragraph is being written (at 8pm on Wednesday evening), has already had over 40,000 views!!!

 

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