Pierre Le­gion­naire

Australian Muscle Car - - Muscle Invader -

Pierre Dieudonne was a cen­tral fig­ure to ar­guably the most tur­bu­lent week in lo­cal mo­tor rac­ing his­tory – his first week in Aus­tralia. AMC caught up with him three decades on.

Peter Brock won The Great Race in 1987. Ev­ery­one knows that. Yet, it was an un­known Bel­gian, driv­ing a car that’s be­come one of the most in­fa­mous in Aus­tralian mo­tor­sport his­tory, whose car was first to the che­quered flag at Mount Panorama that year.

Pierre Dieudonne shared an Eggen­berger Mo­tor­sport Ford Sierra with Steve ‘Sop­er­man’ Soper and now, for the first time in nearly 30 years, he is go­ing on the record with his side of one of the big­gest Bathurst con­tro­ver­sies.

Dieudonne says he never sus­pected his Tex­aco Sierra was il­le­gal, thought Brock was grand­stand­ing with his lurid slides on the greasy track, and was stunned and hum­bled by his Bathurst ex­pe­ri­ence. And he says he still has the Rookie of the Year tro­phy tucked away at his home in Monaco.

“Bathurst ap­peared to me as very spe­cial and in a class of its own. Per­haps I was a bit mad, but in those years I al­ways liked the daunt­ing cir­cuits,” Dieudonne re­calls. “As driv­ers, we had to come to grips with a new, very chal­leng­ing track, fac­ing the lo­cal heroes and the hordes of their sup­port­ers. “The whole ex­pe­ri­ence was thrilling.” The Bel­gian made three more trips to Bathurst af­ter his fac­tory Ford ap­pear­ance, rac­ing Sier­ras with Al­lan Mof­fat and Andrew Bagnall, al­though

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