DONNERS RUN MON­STER CAPRI

GROUP NA­TIONAL EDITOR

Motor Sport News - - Racing News - Pho­tos: Gary Hawkins, Jakob Ebrey Jonny Adam at Day­tona, p22

Vet­eran car builder Ray Don­ner will re­turn to rac­ing this year with a self-built Ford Capri, and will share the car with his son, Chad.

Don­ner was a suc­cess­ful car builder in the 1980s and 1990s, work­ing with club driv­ers Andy Pipe and Craig Davies on their re­spec­tive Fords and Corvettes. He took a break from com­pe­ti­tion at the end of the decade, but has spent the last two years build­ing the Group One 1983 Capri to share with his 28-year-old son Chad this year.

The car, which runs a three-litre 280bhp Steve War­rior en­gine had its shake­down test at Brands Hatch re­cently.

“It was bril­liant to get the car on track as it’s been two years of hard work to get it ready,” said Don­ner, 57. “I es­sen­tially re­tired from rac­ing but Chad grew up look­ing at pic­tures and now wants a go so it seemed the right time to start up again.

“The car has cost at least £53,000 plus labour so far, but we did ev­ery­thing to it. It was a ba­sic Gp 1 when we bought it and we gut­ted it and fit­ted the new en­gine. We’ve also fit­ted four-link rear sus­pen­sion and fab­ri­cated our own body kit with a be­spoke front end and arches in­spired by the orig­i­nal Zak­speed de­sign.”

The Donners plan to race the car in a se­lec­tion of club events, in­clud­ing the Mo­tor­sport News Sa­loon Car Cham­pi­onship, but hope to race it in the Spa Clas­sic one-hour race.

“We want to share the car so in the UK we’ll do se­ries with dou­ble header races and do a race each,” added Don­ner. “Spa is on my bucket list so we’ll try and do that to­gether ei­ther this year or next.”

Peu­geot UK will field a fac­tory en­try in this year’s Sil­ver­stone 24 Hours race, with Bri­ton Bradley Philpot lead­ing the driv­ing team.

The 30-year-old from Southamp­ton will han­dle one of Peu­geot Sport’s two be­spoke 208 GT ma­chines in the twicearound-the-clock event at the Northamp­ton­shire track from April 2/3. The French Team Al­tran squad will run both cars, with full Peu­geot UK sup­port.

Philpot’s team-mates have yet to be de­cided, but Euro­pean Peu­geot Sport reg­u­lars Stephane Ven­taja, Thierry Blaise, Guillaume Ro­man and Kim Holm­gaard are

The Capri has taken two years to build Ray Don­ner (left) and his son Chad

The 208 GT ma­chines have 320bhp from 1.6-litre en­gines

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