Herbert & Pirro To Race Against Ex-Audi Driver Moss In Extraordinary DKW's At Goodwood

British legend Jim Clark made racing début in distinctive DKW

Former Grand Prix aces Johnny Herbert and Emanuele Pirro turn the clock back almost 50 years next weekend (7-8 Sept) when the duo race a pair of three-cylinder, two-stroke DKW saloon cars at Goodwood's "Revival Meeting" in West Sussex.

But Herbert and Pirro, who drive at speeds of over 200mph in the Audi R8 sportscar at Le Mans nowadays, will be following in the wheel tracks of a former double Formula One World Champion when they race the rare 1000cc DKW in Britain.

Somewhat surprisingly Britain's Jim Clark made his car racing début behind the wheel of a DKW "Sonderklasse" owned by Ian Scott-Watson in 1956. Clark, one of the world's greatest single-seater drivers, unexpectedly drove Scott-Watson's DKW at an Aberdeen & District Motor Club organised meeting at Crimond, located between Peterhead and Fraserburgh.

Scott-Watson entered Clark in the "Deek" for a sportscar race, a "scratch" event with no handicap and not surprisingly, the strange little 896cc, 34bhp DKW was hopelessly outgunned by the more powerful Lotus and MGA cars. Clark, who won the World Championship in 1963 and '65 in a Lotus and was killed in an accident at the age of 32 in 1968, finished last after retiring the DKW with a broken half shaft but not before overtaking one car.

Herbert and Pirro will be up against another British motor racing legend in the 18-lap St Mary's Trophy, a two-driver 50-mile saloon car race on Sunday. Sir Stirling Moss, who contested the 1980 British Saloon Car Championship in an Audi 80 - along with Martin Brundle the following year - will be in a field featuring cars like the Austin A35, Morris Minor and Riley.

Brentwood-born Herbert teams-up with Desmond Smail, from Olney in Buckinghamshire, in a 1957 DKW that has been imported by Audi UK from South Africa. Meanwhile reigning American Le Mans Series champion Pirro, who made history three months ago by claiming his third consecutive Le Mans 24 Hours triumph along with Frank Biela and Tom Kristensen, will co-drive German Martin Hesse's 1958 1000cc DKW Coupé DeLuxe.

Both DKWs feature a four-speed gearbox and can now produce around 85bhp. The Hesse car was bought by Martin 10 years ago from its only other owner, a lady, with 45,000 miles on the clock before being converted for classic saloon car racing. A former mechanic from DKW engine tuning specialists, Mantzel, tends the three-cylinder, two-stroke unit.

DKW was founded in 1907 by Dane Jőrgen Skafte Rasmussen and amalgamated in 1932 with Audi, Horch and Wanderer, to form Auto Union. In 1969, NSU joined the "family" which is known today as Audi.

The three-day "Revival Meeting" at Goodwood not only turns the clock back on the track for 14 action-packed races but in the Paddock too. Drivers and team personnel, as well as spectators, are asked to wear 1940-50s period dress.

Published : 02/09/02 Author : Melanie Carter

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