MON­STERS Zytek mon­ster

MN sifts through some of the na­tion’s best club cre­ations. By Jack Benyon, Matt James, Rob Lad­brook, Paul Lawrence, Mar­cus Pye and Kevin Turner.

Motor Sport News - - Club Monsters -

The Ginetta G50Z was the prod­uct of smash­ing the best bits from two top Bri­tish com­pa­nies to­gether and see­ing what re­sulted.

Ginetta’s G50 was al­ready firmly es­tab­lished on the na­tional rac­ing scene as a cost-ef­fec­tive and quick GT4 op­tion, but the Leeds firm had loftier am­bi­tions for the car. Com­pany chair­man Lawrence Tom­lin­son ac­quired a stake in Zytek Engi­neer­ing, which pro­vided an op­por­tu­nity to bring both fac­tions to­gether to work on rac­ing projects.

With ac­cess to Zytek’s en­gine stock, Ginetta opted to ex­per­i­ment with its G50 and as­sess its po­ten­tial as a GT3 racer. In do­ing so it fit­ted a mule chas­sis with one of Zytek’s four-litre V8 en­gines ca­pa­ble of churn­ing out up to 600bhp, the first it­er­a­tion of Ginetta GT3 chal­lenger was born.

The car made its UK de­but in the Bri­tish GT round at Rock­ing­ham in 2009 where, run by Bar­well Mo­tor­sport, it won both races com­fort­ably with Joe Os­borne and Oliver Bryant at the wheel.

With no mass-pro­duc­tion ver­sion, the G50Z ran as an in­vi­ta­tion class en­try for a hand­ful of other Bri­tish GT races, win­ning three of the seven races it con­tested.

The car was then shipped abroad to race in Asia and Aus­tralia, and re­fit­ted with the Zytek 3.4-litre en­gine that pow­ered the first gen­er­a­tion of A1 GP cars.

With Ginetta launch­ing its new G55 model for 2011, work be­gan on cre­at­ing a true GT3 vari­ant of that. The Zytek en­gine was switched in favour of a 4.35-litre V8, but much of the DNA of the G55 GT3 can be traced back to the G50Z. RL most bonkers GT cars Bri­tain was ever to see: the Cer­bera Speed 12.

Plan­ning had be­gun as GT1 was the flavour of the month, but so long was the ges­ta­tion process that the world had changed by the time it was ready. The car had orig­i­nally been am­bi­tiously tar­geted at Le Mans, but made a rather more sub­dued de­but in the Bri­tish GT Cham­pi­onship.

There was no re­li­able power read­ing for the 7.7-litre car, but there was talk of it push­ing out in ex­cess of 800bhp.

TVR Tus­can Chal­lenge grad­u­ates Ian Mckel­lar and Bobby Ver­don-roe teamed up and were en­trusted with han­dling the barely-fin­ished car in 2001, and man­aged to win a race on the power-friendly straights of Sil­ver­stone.

Ver­don-roe was joined by Michael Caine in 2001 and two more wins fol­lowed, but the pro­ject had a short shelf life.

TVR boss Peter Wheeler had de­cided that the road car pro­ject was too dan­ger­ous for the pub­lic to drive and had re­turned all of the de­posits that had been taken for cars. He used all the stock of parts that had been al­ready made to sup­ply the race team, but when they ran out, it was game over. MJ

There was no re­li­able power read­ing for the TVR, but it was es­ti­mated to be over 800bhp

Rookeshield­shield­could­lose­out­to­could lose out to Rooke G50Z fea­tured Zytek en­gine

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